John Wickham - The Godfather
BAUS ePoster online library. Auer A. 06/29/16; 131994; P9-4
Mr. Andreas Auer
Mr. Andreas Auer
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P9-4

Introduction

John Wickham (JW), it has been suggested, is the godfather not only of endo-urology in the UK, but a key pioneer of minimally invasive surgery internationally.

 

Material and methods

The subject was interviewed and the resultant transcript analysed.  Former colleagues were questioned and literature written by, or pertaining to, the subject was reviewed.

 

Results

Having witnessed the finesse of neurosurgery in his training and developed renal cooling for his MD thesis, on being appointed as a consultant in 1968, JW was concerned at the crude surgery for renal calculi which often resulted in nephrectomy.  Over the subsequent decades he developed radial nephrotomies and then PCNL.  In the face of resistance from his British peers he joined with international colleagues to form the Endourological Society in 1994 and was their first president.  He also formed the Society for Minimally Invasive Surgery, with innovators from other specialities in 1989.  In the 1980's he introduced lithotripsy to the UK and with Malcolm Copcoat performed the first laparoscopic nephrectomy.  He also led many Endourological research projects and enthused a new generation of Urologists.  His most ambitious project was an autonomous turp robot which, whilst clinically effective, was moth-balled because of cost.  However, as a proof of principle, it was invaluable, and foresaw the revolution in robotic urological surgery over the subsequent three decades.

Conclusion

JW can rightly be claimed to be the Godfather of Endourology and the impact of his work on minimally invasive surgery across specialities is still evident today.

P9-4

Introduction

John Wickham (JW), it has been suggested, is the godfather not only of endo-urology in the UK, but a key pioneer of minimally invasive surgery internationally.

 

Material and methods

The subject was interviewed and the resultant transcript analysed.  Former colleagues were questioned and literature written by, or pertaining to, the subject was reviewed.

 

Results

Having witnessed the finesse of neurosurgery in his training and developed renal cooling for his MD thesis, on being appointed as a consultant in 1968, JW was concerned at the crude surgery for renal calculi which often resulted in nephrectomy.  Over the subsequent decades he developed radial nephrotomies and then PCNL.  In the face of resistance from his British peers he joined with international colleagues to form the Endourological Society in 1994 and was their first president.  He also formed the Society for Minimally Invasive Surgery, with innovators from other specialities in 1989.  In the 1980's he introduced lithotripsy to the UK and with Malcolm Copcoat performed the first laparoscopic nephrectomy.  He also led many Endourological research projects and enthused a new generation of Urologists.  His most ambitious project was an autonomous turp robot which, whilst clinically effective, was moth-balled because of cost.  However, as a proof of principle, it was invaluable, and foresaw the revolution in robotic urological surgery over the subsequent three decades.

Conclusion

JW can rightly be claimed to be the Godfather of Endourology and the impact of his work on minimally invasive surgery across specialities is still evident today.

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