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Pioneering British medical achievements receive royal recognition on a new set of four stamps, as reported by the Royal Mail in London.

The subject of the designs is "Discoveries" and is this year's PostEurop theme for stamps issued by postal authorities throughout Europe.The 25-pence stamp features ultrasonic imaging, developed by scientists at Glasgow University 40 years ago as an ultrasound scan for pregnant women, used to produce an image of an unborn baby.

The 30-pence illustrates scanning electron microscopy, which allows imaging of objects less than a few thousandths of a millimeter across.

The 35-pence features MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), which allows doctors to examine the atoms which make up the human body using tuned radio waves to look for differences between normal and dead tissue. It is commonly used to examine the brain, heart and kidneys.

The 41-pence portrays computed tomography, which uses X-ray beams to take pictures of a slice through the human body. The CT scan was developed by Britisher Godfrey Hounsfield.

- Syd Kronish