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Biographical entry Lam, Sorab Jamshed Sorabsha (1934 - 2010)

MRCS LRCP 1957; MB BS London 1957; FRCS 1961; FRCS Edin 1961; FICS 1969; FACS 1972.

22 October 1934
Bombay, India
30 November 2010
Orthopaedic surgeon and Trauma surgeon


Sorab Jamshed Sorabsha Lam, known as 'Soli', was a senior consultant orthopaedic and trauma surgeon in Bromley and Tunbridge Wells. He was born in Bombay, India, on 22 October 1934, the son of two distinguished lawyers, Jamshed Sorabsha Lam, a solicitor, and Mithan Lam née Tata, a barrister and one of the first women to be called to the British bar (in 1923). In 1950 Lam went to the UK, where he attended Dulwich College and then Guy's Hospital Medical School. He gained his MB BS and MRCS LRCP in 1957.

He was a house officer at Guy's and then a senior house officer at Birmingham Accident Hospital. From June 1960 he was a senior house officer in surgery at Manchester Royal Infirmary. In 1961 he gained his FRCS and became a registrar in orthopaedic and general surgery at St Olave's Hospital, then annexed to Guy's. From 1962 to 1963 he was a registrar in vascular surgery at St Mary's Hospital, London. He was then a registrar in surgery at Lewisham General Hospital, and a registrar in orthopaedic surgery at Birkenhead General Hospital and Guy's. From 1965 to 1969, he was a senior registrar in orthopaedic surgery at Guy's, during which time he spent a year on a Fulbright travelling fellowship as an instructor in orthopaedic surgery at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. In 1968 he was a Hunterian Professor at the Royal College of Surgeons.

In June 1969 he was appointed as a consultant to the Cray Valley and Sevenoaks Hospital Group, based at Orpington and Sevenoaks hospitals. In 1974, as a result of boundary and hospital reorganisations, he became a senior consultant orthopaedic and trauma surgeon to the Bromley Hospitals Trust (including Bromley, Orpington and Farnborough hospitals) and consultant orthopaedic surgeon to Tunbridge Wells Health Authority (Sevenoaks Hospital). For many years he was completely single-handed. He was particularly interested in spinal surgery, including correction of scoliosis, and in the reconstruction of knee and ankle joints.

He was a fellow of the British Orthopaedic Association and the British Scoliosis Society, a member of the European Spine Society, the Société Internationale de Chirurgie Orthopédique et de Traumatologie, the British Association for Surgery of the Knee and the British Elbow and Shoulder Society, and an associate member of the British Society of Surgery of the Hand and the Scoliosis Research Society. He was also a visiting surgeon in America, Tunisia, Australia and Cyprus.

He was a founder member of the British Fulbright Scholars Association and on the executive committee for five years.

In his younger days he was a very active sportsman; he was ranked number four in the world at squash and was a cricketer for the minor counties. He won numerous trophies for squash, swimming and table tennis.
His first marriage ended in divorce, and he had no further contact with his children. In 1980 he married Margaret. Soli Lam died suddenly on 30 November 2010, aged 75. He was survived by his stepsons, Stephen and Tim. Two British Orthopaedic Association fellowships have been set up in his memory.

Sarah Gillam

The Royal College of Surgeons of England