This week, the Swedish Academy announced the 2013 winners of the Nobel Prize in Medicine.
You may be familiar with the story of Dr. Rosalyn Yalow,
Mount Sinai’s first Nobel laureate, but she is not the only Mount Sinai doctor
to have been nominated for this most distinguished of awards.
In 1935, Dr. Ira Kaplan, a prominent radiologist at New
York’s Bellevue Hospital, was approached by the Nobel Committee to nominate a
candidate for the Prize. He chose Mount Sinai’s I.C. Rubin, a pioneering
gynecologist whose development of the Rubin insufflation test was a major
breakthrough in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility.
The above manuscript by Dr. Kaplan, now part of the I.C.
in the Mount Sinai Archives, was submitted to the Nobel Committee in support of
his nomination. It describes Dr. Rubin’s “signal and unique
achievement” in developing a non-intrusive outpatient procedure that could
be used to detect blockages of the fallopian tubes. As Dr. Kaplan notes, the
Rubin Test cleared the ground for a wide range of further studies into the
causes of sterility, making it “the most outstanding contribution” to
contemporary fertility research and “one of the most important
contributions to gynecologic medicine and surgery in the present century.”