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The invention of the ophthalmoscope by Hermann von Helmholtz in 1850/51 allowed ophthalmologists to see inside the living organ of sight and reveal its secrets. Without doubt this was one of the most significant, if not the most significant event in the history of ophthalmology.
A year later (1851) William Bowman (of Bowman's membrane fame) acquired one of the first models of Helmholtz's ophthalmoscope which he enthusiastically deployed at Moorfields Eye Hospital in England. Bowman's student, Charles Bader, was amongst the earliest users of the ophthalmoscope in England. In 1855 he had published an article in German on the ophthalmoscope stating that in a period of 4 weeks he had seen 600 patients at the Royal London Ophthalmic Hospital (Moorfields). He later published a book of …
Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.