May 2015 | Bealtaine 2015

Inaugural Bernard Connor Medal for Rheumatology

Mon, 4 May 15 09:00

Did you know that a young Irish Medical Student was the first to discover Ankylosing Spondolytis?  The young Kerryman, Dr Bernard O’Connor (later Connor) made his observations whilst studying medicine in France in 1693.

The Irish Society for Rheumatology has announced the inaugural Bernard Connor Medal for Rheumatology competition for undergraduate medical students.  The competition is open to all students of medicine in Ireland  (or Irish citizens studying medicine abroad).  Any student registered to an MB degree on April 1st 2015 can submit an entry in one of three categories: original research; case study or original essay. All entries should relate to the theme of this inaugural award  "Medical Student Observation in Rheumatology."

First prize is sponsored attendance at the ISR Annual Scientific Meeting 2015, at which the winner will present their submission and receive the Bernard Connor Medal plus mentorship for the conference with Dr Suzanne Donnelly, ISR Board Member and Director of Clinical Education, UCD School of Medicine & Medical Science. A number of runner-up prizes may also be awarded at the discretion of the judging panel.

Further details (including submission guide, entry form & closing date) are available on the homepage of the ISR website. All submissions must be the student's own work, however students are encouraged to seek guidance from MMUH & SVUH Rheumatology consultants and SpRs if they require assistance identifying suitable cases or topics for submission.

Closing Date for applications is 3rd July 2015. 

Please note that this competition is being run by the Irish Society for Rheumatology and is included here to help advertise the opportunity to medical students. While every best effort is made to ensure this information is up to date, the School cannot accept responsibility for any subsequent changes by the competition organisers.

About Bernard Connor (1666 – 1698)

Born Bernard O’Connor (he subsequently dropped the ‘O’) in Kerry in 1666, this young Irish medical student led a remarkable but short life.  After studying medicine in France, he travelled extensively through Europe mixing with many of the greatest minds of a golden era of medicine. Dr Bernard Connor was the first to describe Ankylosing Spondylitis in 1693. Prior to graduation whilst studying in France, in a letter published in Paris in 1693, he described the appearance of part of a skeleton: pelvis, lumbar and dorsal spine, and ribs up to the mid thoracic level. An English version was included in Connor’s book Dissertationes Medico Physicae published in Oxford in 1695. He wrote the first clinical description of Ankylosing Spondylitis ever published.  Connor was elected fellow of the Royal Society, a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Membrede l’Academie Francaise, a remarkable achievement for a doctor barely in his 30s.

More about the life of Dr Bernard Connor here.