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Biographical entry Roughton, Edmund Wilkinson (1863 - 1913)

MRCS Jan 24th 1883; FRCS Dec 9th 1886; MB Lond (Gold Medal in obstetric medicine and honours in medicine) 1883; BS (University Scholar and Gold Medal in surgery) 1887; MD (Gold Medal in medicine) 1884.

10 June 1913
Dental surgeon and General surgeon


Son of a naval officer; studied at St Bartholomew's Hospital, where he had a brilliant career, and gained many honours at the London University. He was successively House Surgeon, Ophthalmic House Surgeon, Resident Midwifery Assistant, and Assistant Demonstrator of Anatomy from 1886-1890, at St Bartholomew's Hospital. In 1890 he was appointed, at St Mary's Hospital, Demonstrator of Anatomy and later Warden of the College, holding the posts for seven years. In the meantime he was elected Assistant Surgeon to the Royal Free Hospital, Lecturer on Surgery at the London School of Medicine for Women, and Surgeon in Charge of the Throat and Ear Department.

A tall, handsome man, he was apt to assume a rather brusque, superior manner, and his temperament did not allow him to subordinate his views to those of his seniors. Hence he lost their support, and when a vacancy occurred for an Assistant Surgeon to St Mary's Hospital he was not elected.

As regards diagnosis and skill as an operator he well maintained his early promise without devoting himself to original research. Whilst a House Surgeon he had added to Cline's side splint a foot-piece to prevent extension of the foot when a Pott's fracture was treated on the side, and this splint was named after him.

He was Visiting Surgeon to the National Dental Hospital, and published some good communications on oral sepsis and cancer of the mouth, as well as a Text-book of Oral Surgery (8vo, London, 1898) for the use of dental students. In the Special Throat and Ear Department he operated skilfully on the mastoid antrum and nasal septum. He was Examiner in Elementary Anatomy at the Royal College of Surgeons in 1895.

Nearly a year before his death he found that he was suffering from inoperable intestinal cancer. He retired from 38 Queen Anne Street to Lauderdale Mansions, Marylebone, but continued his hospital work as long as possible, courageously and uncomplainingly facing the end, which occurred on June 10th, 1913. He married but left no children.

His portrait accompanies the obituary notice in the Lancet (1913, i, 1685, 1775) by his colleague, Dr Walter Carr, and a biographical notice by A S W appeared in the St Bartholomew's Hospital Journal (1912-13, xx, 182).

The Royal College of Surgeons of England