Lives of the fellows

George Allan Heron

b.9 April 1845 d.10 December 1915
MB CM Glasg(1867) MD DPH FRCP(1887)

G. A. Heron was born in Glasgow and educated at Ross’s School, Ottawa, and Glasgow Academy. He trained for his career at Glasgow University, and, after graduating M.B, C.M, in 1867 and acting in house appointments at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, extended his studies at Paris, Berlin and University College, London. He was assistant medical officer at Glamorgan County Asylum and engaged in general practice at Margate and King’s Cliffe, Northamptonshire, before settling in London as a consultant. In 1878 he was appointed assistant physician to the City of London Hospital for Diseases of the Chest, with which he remained connected for the next thirty-seven years. He was also physician to the West End Hospital for Nervous Diseases for a time. When Koch, whose friendship he had made in his Berlin days, published his discovery of tuberculin in 1890, Heron was the first physician in England to give the treatment a full and extended trial. Moreover, he maintained his belief in its efficacy long after others had come to recognise its imperfections. Heron rendered valuable service in emphasising, in the light of Koch’s work, the factor of infection in pulmonary tuberculosis. He was a man of striking presence, courage and conviction, who masked his sincerity behind a pose of cynicism. Heron, who was a widower with three sons, died in London.

G H Brown

[Lancet, 1915; B.M.J., 1915; Presidential Address to R.C.P., 1916, 25]

(Volume IV, page 323)

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