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Sir Archibald Hector McIndoe

(1900—1960) plastic surgeon


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New Zealand plastic surgeon who pioneered techniques of treating airmen badly burned during World War II, rebuilding their faces and limbs and helping them to overcome the psychological problems caused by their mutilations. McIndoe graduated from the University of Otago Medical School (1924) and after several years in the USA at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, he went to London and trained as a plastic surgeon. By 1939 he was a renowned expert in this field and became consultant to the RAF, which arranged for him to organize a centre at East Grinstead for the treatment of severely burned airmen and air-raid victims. McIndoe created a world-famous centre for reconstructive plastic surgery and followed the progress of his patients, fighting on their behalf for better pay and conditions until they were rehabilitated. He personally operated on six hundred men, who formed their own club, ‘McIndoe's Guinea Pigs’, which met annually and through which he was able to follow the fortunes of his patients. After the war McIndoe improved the facilities at East Grinstead and trained plastic surgeons from all over the world.

From Who's Who in the Twentieth Century in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).


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