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Biographical entry Sandblom, Philip (1903 - 2001)

Hon FRCS 1983; MD Lund; Hon FRCS Edinburgh; Hon FRCSI; Hon FACS.

21 February 2001
General surgeon and Paediatric surgeon


Philip Sandblom was Professor of Surgery at Lund University, Sweden. He was born in 1903 in Chicago, of Swedish parents. He attended medical school in the city and did research under A C Ivy at Northwestern University, demonstrating that cholecystokinin was a hormone. He then trained as a surgeon in Sweden. Although he started his career as a paediatric surgeon, he was appointed Professor of General Surgery at Lund in 1950. He served as Vice-Chancellor from 1957 to 1968.

He published extensively on trauma to the hepatobiliary tract, and pioneered the Whipple-Blakemore operation for correcting portal hypertension. This work made Lund a world centre, and reinforced his belief that such operations should only be done in expert centres, where many cases are seen.

He had many interests, including art: together with his wife Grace he had collected a fine collection of paintings, including works by Delacroix, Renoir, Picasso, Matisse and Braque. These formed the subject of his magisterial book Creativity and disease; how illness affects literature, art and music (Philadelphia PA, George F Stickley, 1983).

Even in retirement he continued to be active, maintaining houses in Lausanne, San Diego and Lund. It was in Lausanne, whilst out shopping with his wife, that he collapsed and died at the age of 97, on 21 February 2001.

Sources used to compile this entry: [World Gastroenterology News, Spring 2002].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England