BRIEF HISTORY OF INDIAN RADIOLOGY |
material has been put together from two articles by Maj Gen S K Dhawan and all
copyright belongs to him and the REF.
If anyone has any more material or can add to this history page, please send it
to us for incorporation. Other headings include history of radiology in different
regions of the country, related to different modalities, radiation rotection,
contrast media, etc. All contributions will be acknowledged.
Prof. W.C. Roentgen discovered the mysterious X-rays on 8th November, 1895, it
is difficult to be sure as to when and where the first X-ray machine was installed
in India. The late Dr. K. P. Mody had mentioned, in his editorial in the Indian
Journal of Radiology & Imaging, in 1956 that the first X-ray machine was imported
by a chemist in 1902 into India; that was only 7 years after the discovery.
New Delhi became the capital of India in 1912. It appears that, in Delhi the first
X-ray machine was installed at Lady Hardinge Hospital in 1918, and a chair in
radiology was established in 1923 at the Lady Hardinge Medical College & Hospital.
After World War I, the government established a dispensary with X-ray facilities
somewhere near Jama Masjid. Rai Bahadur Hari Ram started private practice in radiology
along with his general practice in 1932, but exclusive radiology practice was
started by Dr. S C Sen in 1933 who later became a founder member of the Indian
Radiological Association (IRA). He had a 150 mA unit. Dr. Sen claimed two other
"firsts" to his credit. He started deep X-ray therapy in New Delhi in 1935 with
a 180 kV machine and also started group practice.
Radiology in North India further evolved at the time of partition in 1947, when
a large number of medical practitioners including radiologists migrated to Delhi
from Pakistan. Some of the prominent radiologists among them were Dr. Diwan Chand
Agarwal, Dr. R K Handa, Dr. R C Goulatia, Dr. R M Sharma and Dr. Roshan Lal. Dr.
D C Agarwal had been one of the leading radiologists in Lahore since 1927. This
remarkable man laid down the foundation of a modern X-ray clinic in Delhi.
advancements were taking place in the southern, western and eastern parts of India
and Madras (now Chennai), Bombay (now Mumbai) and Calcutta grew in stature. The
Barnard Institute of Radiology was established in Chennai and many radiologists
who could not go abroad for training, went to Madras for their post-graduate studies.
machines were single phase self rectified x-ray machines with air-cooled rectified
valves with cones and cylinders. The tables were mechanically or manually operated
with crude spot film devices, etc. One was lucky to get access to a 200 or 300
mA unit. In Delhi, upto 1952, Irwin Hospital and Lady Hardinge Medical college
had the only well-equipped radiology departments while Safdarjung Hospital languished
with only one 100 mA unit. At present, there are scores of well-equiped departments
in Government and public institutions and there are over a 100 private clinics.
Similarly, all the metropolitan cities have scores of well-equipped centres.
It appears that there are about ten thousand 500 mA units in India today; 100-500
mA units are about 30,000 and less than 100 mA units may be about 20,000. The
annual demand for conventional x-ray machines is in the vicinity of 1500 (though
it appears that demand is going down). There are about 350 CT scanners all over
the country with a demand of about 50 per annum. There are about 50 MRI scanners
and the anticipated demand is 20 per year.
RADIOLOGICAL & IMAGING ASSOCIATION
Ajit Mohan Bose and Dr. Subodh Mitra founded the Indian Radiological Association
in Calcutta in 1931 and the first meeting was held on 21 April 1931. It used to
meet as a section of the Indian Medical Association. The IRA was registered in
March 1937 with the registrar of Joint Stock Companies, Bengal with a mere 24
members. There was a lull in the activities of the IRA during World War II. Immediately
after, Dr. P Rama Rao and Dr. K M Rai revived the association at Chennai. From
1946, the association took a firm hold and started as a coherent, cogent and cohesive
association. Since then there has been no looking back and the IRA has grown from
strength. From 24 members in 1931, it now has around 3500 members. In the late
80s, keeping with the times, the name was changed to Indian Radiology & Imaging
INDIAN JOURNAL OF RADIOLOGY & IMAGING
The journal was started in February 1947 at Chennai, soon after the re-formation
of the IRA. Dr. Rama Rao and Dr. K M Rai were the joint editors. The journal was
shifted to Mumbai in 1950 under the editorship of Dr. K P Modi. Dr. Madan Lal
Aggarwal and Dr. O P Bhardwaj later took up the reins of the journal and carried
on till 1976. Maj. Gen. S K Dhawan was elected editor in 1980. He was followed
by Dr. Mukund Joshi and then Dr. Om Tavri.
INDIAN COLLEGE OF RADIOLOGY & IMAGING
was the dream of the founding fathers of the association that we should have a
college purely dedicated to the teaching of radiology in this country and spread
knowledge. The late Dr. P K Haldar and late Dr. K N Kamdar were primarily responsible
for evolving the concept and 100 senior members were chosen to be founder fellows.
The college evolved its constitution, rules and regulations and strict criteria
for membership and fellowship. Many illustrious leaders in the profession have
served in the ICRI.