Browse Fellows


www Lives

Biographical entry Wilson, Thomas Edward (1913 - 1972)

MRCS and FRCS 1946; FRACS 1942; FRCS Ed 1947; FACS 1944; MB BS Melbourne 1936; BSc 1937; MD 1939; MS 1941; MRACP 1939.

25 January 1913
Melbourne, Australia
30 October 1972
General surgeon


Thomas Edward Wilson was born in Melbourne on 25 January 1913 and had a distinguished record at Scotch College, Melbourne, especially in geometry, and as a champion swimmer. He proceeded to Melbourne University, but while an undergraduate had the misfortune to lose both his parents; yet in spite of this handicap he decided on a medical career and passed the Primary FRCS examination before graduating MB BS with honours in 1936. In 1937 he obtained the BSc in mathematics, French, German and bacteriology.

He was a resident medical officer at the Royal Melbourne Hospital in 1937 and resident clinical pathologist in 1938. In 1939 he became resident at the Children's Hospital and in the same year graduated MD and passed the MRACP examination.

In 1940 Wilson moved to Sydney where he was appointed a junior fellow in surgery at the Prince Henry Hospital, being promoted to senior fellow in 1941 and obtaining the MS degree the same year. He derived great benefit from working with Sir Hugh Poate, and passed the FRACS examination in 1942. He then joined the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps as a surgical specialist with the rank of Major and served in New Guinea. He was made a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons in 1944, and in 1945 after his active service was over he obtained the MSc Melbourne.

In 1946 Wilson began his long association with Sydney Hospital, but was granted leave in 1947 when he came to London, obtained the FRCS England and commenced his specialty in colon and rectal surgery by working as a resident surgical officer at St Mark's Hospital. In 1947 he also obtained the FRCS of Edinburgh.

When he returned to Sydney in 1948 he established a rectal surgery clinic at Sydney Hospital and was also appointed to the staffs of several neighbouring hospitals where his reputation for surgical competence was commensurate with his astonishing record of academic achievement.

Wilson's outside interests were in house design and decoration, in gardening and in sailing, which were shared by his wife Gwen, and together they made a hobby of entertaining their numerous visitors. When he died suddenly on 30 October 1972 his wife and their son and daughter survived him.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Med J Aust 1973, 1, 1062].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England