Kerley, Peter

PETER KERLEY (1900–1979)

Peter Kerley was born on 27 October 1900 at Dundalk, County Louth. Following his graduation from University College Dublin in 1923, he spent one year training in radiology in Vienna. He took the DMRE at Cambridge and received an M.D. from the National University of Ireland in 1932.

Kerley became Director of Radiology at the Westminster Hospital in London and was also affiliated with the Royal Chest Hospital. In was made a Fellow of Honour of the Faculty of Radiologists, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin. The Sir Peter Kerley Lecture of the Royal College of Radiologists is named for him.

He was editor of the Journal of the Faculty of Radiologists and author of many original papers. As joint author and editor of a textbook on X-ray diagnosis, he established this work as the definitive text on radiology for many years. His most telling contribution was undoubtedly his description of the so-called A, B, and C lines he observed on the chest x-ray films of patients suffering from various degrees of cardiac failure and raised venous pressure. This opened a new chapter in investigative radiology, and "Kerley's lines" became a legend in the founder's lifetime.

Kerley was elected FRCP in 1943 and the following year received the Roentgen award of the British Institute of Radiology. In 1976 the Royal College of Radiology awarded him its gold medal. He was knighted in 1972 in recognition of his services to Radiology and as Radiologist to the British royal family. Sir Peter Kerley  died at his home on 15 March 1979.


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