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Biographical entry Kidd, Francis Seymour (1878 - 1934)

MRCS 14 May 1903; FRCS 1 June 1905; BA BCh Cambridge 1903; MB 1905; MA MCh 1921; LRCP 1903.

30 March 1878
Blackheath Park
12 May 1934
Barton Stacey, Hampshire
Urological surgeon


Born at Brooklands, Blackheath Park, SE on 30 March 1878, the second child of the marriage of Joseph Kidd, MD, with Frances Rouse, his second wife. His father, the seventeenth of a family of eighteen, was a well-known homoeopathic physician in London; a brother by a previous marriage was Percy Kidd, MD (1851-1942), see Lancet, 1942, 1, 184, who was educated at St Bartholomew's Hospital and became physician to the London Hospital, and his elder sister by the second marriage was Beatrice Mary Kidd, MB, who practised at St Leonards-on-Sea. Two others of his father's fifteen children, Walter and Leonard Kidd, also practised medicine.

Frank Kidd was educated at Stratheden House, Blackheath, at Winchester College, and at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he matriculated on 30 June 1896. He entered the London Hospital and was awarded the surgical scholarship in 1903, subsequently filling the posts of house physician, house surgeon to E Hurry Fenwick, surgical registrar 1906, assistant surgeon 1910, surgeon 1917; the latter post he resigned on 8 November 1920. He was demonstrator of anatomy in the medical school attached to the Hospital during the years 1910-11. Under the influence of Hurry Fenwick he devoted himself more especially to genito-urinary surgery. He was appointed out-patient clinical assistant at St Peter's Hospital for Stone in February 1908 and was reappointed at six-monthly intervals until February 1910, after which he did not seek reappointment. He then became attached to St Paul's Hospital in Endell Street, WC, of which he was consulting surgeon at the time of his death. During the war he served in France as captain, RAMC, 1917-19.

In March 1929 he was one of the founders and the first editor of the British Journal of Urology. He was president of the urological section of the Royal Society of Medicine in 1927-28; a member of the International Society of Urology, and the Association fran├žaise d'Urologie; a corresponding member of the Berliner urologische Gesellschaft, of the American Association of Genito-Urinary Surgeons and an honorary member of the American Urological Association, as well as a corresponding academician of the Royal Medical Academy of Rome.

At Winchester, where he was in Sunnyside house, he was in the association football XI 1900-04, and later played hockey for the South and was reserve for the England hockey XI. He married in July 1909 Stella, daughter of W Williams of Langland; she survived him with three sons. He died very suddenly of coronary thrombosis on 12 May 1934 at Bransbury Mill, Barton Stacey, where he had been fishing.

Kidd was fortunate in his period, for he specialized in urinary surgery at a time when there was much improvement in the technique of ureteric catheterization, when there were improvements in the surgery of the prostate, and when the introduction of X-ray examinations and the development of bacteriology made it possible to discover the cause of most urinary symptoms and to treat the cause with greater safety than was possible for the older generation of surgeons. He held that no urologist could hope to be successful or even competent unless he was fully acquainted with venereal disease and diseases of the urethra. To this end he started a genito-urinary department at the London Hospital. Men only were treated in it at first, but it was afterwards enlarged to admit women and children. He was a clever and dexterous surgeon who used instruments with a minimum of pain and discomfort to the patients, but, being of a nervous temperament, he took things unduly to heart when any contretemps occurred in the after-treatment.

Urinary surgery. London, 1910.
Common diseases of the male urethra. Ibid, 1917.
Common infections of the kidneys with the colon bacillus and allied bacteria. Ibid. 1920.
Common infections of the female urethra and cervix, with A M Simpson. Ibid, 1924.
He edited the British Journal of Urology from 1929 to 1934, with H P Winsbury White.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Brit J Urol 1934, 6, 101, with portrait, a good likeness; Lancet, 1934, 1, 1091 and p 1143 with portrait; Brit med J. 1934, 1, 967; The Times, 15 May 1934, p 11a; information given by his half-brother Dr Percy Kidd and by the secretaries of the London and St Peter's Hospitals].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England