Dr Samways Writes to the Editor: The Life and Times of an Exceptional Physician (1857-1931)
This is the story of Dr Daniel West Samways’s academic and professional life. After early achievements in physics at Cambridge, and medical training under eminent physicians at Guy’s Hospital, London, he seemed destined for a prestigious career. An attack of tuberculosis threw him off course. After recovering on the French Riviera he added a Paris MD to his numerous qualifications and turned to general practice. The book captures his undiminished scientific curiosity and clinical compassion, revealed in his many articles, commentaries and letters to the major journals. He engaged in debate, seeking to correct wrong thinking and to champion science-based practice. The book chronicles the treatments of common diseases and arcane medical practices in changing times. The Great War prevented him practising in France. He worked in an Exeter War Hospital and his writing continued with new energy. His wide knowledge and astute observations raised challenges which continue to resonate today.
Tom Treasure has published more than 750 journal articles, a dozen books and many book chapters, mainly related to his life’s work as a prominent heart and lung surgeon. A lifelong interest in history led to a mid-career sabbatical at the Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, followed by four years on its research grant panel and authorship of chapters on the history of surgery. His professional achievements include election to the Council of the English Royal College of Surgeons, and he served the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery in various capacities, including as President. His literary duties have included serving on the editorial boards of the Royal Society of Medicine, the British Medical Journal, Heart, Thorax, and The Lancet. He was Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Guy’s Hospital, London, and is now an Honorary Professor at University College, London.
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