Circular Patterson Foreign Body Fluoroscope (ca. 1920s)

This circular hand-held fluoroscope was manufactured by the Patterson Screen Company of Towanda Pennsylvania, probably in the 1920s. At the time, Patterson screens were the recognized standard in the U.S.

After dark adapting the eyes, and with the beam on, the physician would position themselves on the opposite side of the patient from the x-ray tube and view the image produced on the fluorescent screen of the fluoroscope. 

The fluoroscope originally came with a small magnifying glass that could be used to view the screen. Unfortunately, this is missing.

Quoting the manufacturer's literature: "The Patterson Foreign Body Fluoroscope  was developed from a suggestion and with the co-operation of Dr. Robert A. Arens, who in his work at the Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago, felt the need of a small fluoroscope that could be used when removing a foreign body with the aid of x-rays. After a foreign body has been located and its removal is anticipated on the fluoroscopic table, it is very inconvenient for the operator to work under the large fluoroscopic screen. We felt this condition warranted the manufacture of the Patterson Foreign Body Fluoroscope . . . The apparatus has been made small and circular so that instruments can be used around and under it conveniently . . . A magnifying glass is mounted above the screen on an adjustable post which may be of assistance when removing small parts like a needle point. The fluoroscope can be used without the lens if desired."

Size: 4" outer diameter, 3" diameter screen, 15" total length.


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Last updated: 05/10/11
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