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Biographical entry Trickey, Edward Lorden (1920 - 1999)

MRCS 1944; FRCS 1950; LRCP 1944.

20 October 1999
Orthopaedic surgeon


Edward Lorden Trickey, or 'E L T' as he was known to his contemporaries, was a consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Edgware General Hospital and at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Stanmore. He was born in China in 1920, the eldest son of the missionaries E C W and M C Trickey. His mother died when Lorden was only 18 months old. He and his sister Margaret went as boarders to Chefoo School in China, returning home only once a year for Christmas - a two week journey made hazardous by the risks of cholera and typhoid. On his first visit to England at the age of six he passed close to King's College Hospital, and resolved that he would become a surgeon there. He then went to England as a teenager, as a sponsored scholar to Dulwich College. He qualified from King's College Hospital in 1944 and, after house jobs, did his National Service as a medical officer in Africa.

He returned to take the FRCS and became senior registrar at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, followed by a similar post at Charing Cross. He was appointed consultant orthopaedic surgeon to Ashton-under-Lyne in 1957, but returned to London in 1960, to set up an orthopaedic and trauma service at Edgware General Hospital, combined with a post at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital. He retired from the NHS in 1985, but continued as Dean of the Institute of Orthopaedics until 1987, at a time when the future of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital and the Institute was under threat.

He was an outstanding teacher, with a particular interest in disorders of the knee, famous for his lectures on ligamentous injuries, illustrated by his own dissections. In the late 1960s he went to Toronto to learn the technique of arthroscopy from Robert Jackson. He was President of the British Association for the Surgery of the Knee, and Vice-President of its European equivalent. He made many trips abroad to the orthopaedic centres in the Third World. Despite his expertise in knee surgery, E L T remained a generalist, and could still turn his hand to the management of the most complicated multiple injuries.

He had been a talented cricketer and was a member of the MCC. He regularly arranged cricket matches between the staff at Stanmore and other hospitals, played on a rather uneven and unpredictable pitch. He also had a talent for amateur dramatics. Later he became a first class golfer, continuing even when challenged by Parkinson's disease in his retirement. He married Doreen in 1944, and they had three children. She predeceased him. He died on 17 April 2002 after a prolonged illness, cared for by his devoted partner Grace Fisher.

Sources used to compile this entry: [BMJ 2002 325 973; information from J N Wilson].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England