Alan Graham Apley

Alan Graham Apley (1914 – 1996)

Alan Graham Apley (1914 – 1996) was a British Orthopaedic Surgeon and educationalist.

Author of the essential orthopaedic reference text first published in 1959: Apley’s System of Orthopaedics and Fractures, now in it’s 10th edition (2017).

Expert Postgraduate surgical educator set up the ‘Pyrford Postgraduate FRCS Course’ better known as the ‘Apley Course‘. Serving more than 5,000 students over 15 years with satellite courses in New York City and Toronto.

In 1947 Apley described posterior examination of the knee to determine damage to the knee meniscus. This is more commonly referred o as the Apley Test [*Apley grind test’ Apley Compression test]

  • Born 10 November 1914, London
  • 1938 – Graduated MBBS University College Hospital, London
  • 1941 – Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of England
  • 1947 – Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Rowley Bristow Orthopedic Hospital at Pyrford
  • 1959 – 1st edition: Apley’s System of Orthopaedics and Fractures – unillustrated paperback with blank pages for notes. Continued for 5 more editions prior to engaging Solomon as a second author
  • Director of Orthopedics at St. Thomas Hospital
  • 1983-1985 Vice president Royal College of Surgeons
  • 1984 – Editor of The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery
  • Honorary Medal of the Royal College of Surgeons of England
  • Died 20 December 1996

Medical Eponyms
Apley grind test [Apley compression test] (1947)

Knee examination for meniscus tear by pressure and rotation of the foot with the patient lying face down and the knee flexed 90 degrees. See Apley Test

Major Publications
  • Apley AG. The diagnosis of meniscus injuries; some new clinical methods. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1947 Jan;29(1):78-84. [PMID 20284687] [Apley grind test]
  • Apley AG. Tunnel syndromes in the upper limb. Practitioner. 1956 Dec;177(1062):722-4. [PMID 13389100]
  • Apley AG. Apley’s System of Orthopaedics and Fractures Hodder Arnold. 1959
  • Apley AG. Intelligent Kneemanship. Postgrad Med J. 1964 Sep; 40(467): 519–520. [PMC2482658]
  • Apley AG. Commonly missed orthopaedic injuries. Postgrad Med J. 1967 Sep; 43(503): 568–573. [PMC2466202]
  • Apley AG, Millner WF, Porter DS. A follow-up study of Moore’s arthroplasty in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the hip. J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1969 Nov;51(4):638-47. [PMID 5371968]
  • Apley AG. Ulnar nerve paresis–a simple test. Hand. 1980 Feb;12(1):81. [PMID 7364329]
  • Apley AG, Wientroub S. The sagging rope sign in Perthes’ disease and allied disorders. J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1981 Feb;63-B(1):43-7. [PMID 7204473]
  • Apley AG. Instability of the knee resulting from ligamentous injury. A plea for plain words. J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1980 Nov;62-B(4):515-6. [PMID 7430238]
  • Apley AG. The evolution of hip replacement. Trans Med Soc Lond. 1988-1989;105:21-4. [PMID 3153114]


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the person behind the name

Emergency physician MA (Oxon) MBChB (Edin) FACEM FFSEM with a passion for rugby; medical history; medical education; and asynchronous learning #FOAMed evangelist. Co-founder and CTO of Life in the Fast lane | Eponyms | Books |

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