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Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine

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19 December 2006

Congratulations: Dr Lossio

Dr Jorge Lossio with his parents
Dr Jorge Lossio with his parents

On 12 December Jorge Lossio was awarded his PhD for his thesis " Life at High Altitudes: Medical Historical Debates (Andean Region, 1890-1960) ". Dr Lossio has been awarded a Wellcome Trust VIP career development post by the Faculty for four months to work on publications and grant applications.

Sharon Mathews

Sharon Mathews and her examiners
Sharon Mathews and her examiners

On 15 December Sharon Mathews had the viva voce examination for her doctorate on Frederick Walker Mott. Sharon successfully defended her thesis and will be graduating in the New Year.

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17 October 2006

Wrightington Project gets Freddie's Seal of Approval

Francis Neary (left) with Andrew Flintoff at the opening
Francis Neary (left) with Andrew Flintoff at the opening
Research at CHSTM has led to the development of a Patient Information Centre for Joint Replacement at Wrightington Hospital, near Wigan. After a long association with the hospital, Andrew 'Freddie' Flintoff, England Ashes Tour Captain, formally opened the new Centre on 3 October.

The project is the first of its kind and demonstrates the benefits, risks and unknowns of joint replacement surgery to patients. This unique, interactive exhibition, which maps the patient's journey from initial referral to the hospital through to rehabilitation and follow-up, has been designed in collaboration with Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Trust and its hospital staff, patients and their families and carers.

"The aim of The Patient's Journey is to demystify the complexities surrounding patients' treatment by educating them about hospital practices at every stage of their procedure, reassuring them and addressing their anxieties, and ensuring that they fully understand the consent process and are informed enough to agree to their operation," said the exhibition's curator, CHSTM's Dr Francis Neary.

As he toured the exhibition and unveiled a commemorative plaque, Freddie took particular interest in the video of Sir John Charnley performing his pioneering hip operation and the x-ray light box interactive (where patients can view the differences between healthy, diseased and replaced joints).  

The Patient's Journey is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. More information is available on the Wigan and Leigh NHS Trust website.

10 October 2006

Arrivals and Departures

The start of the new academic year allows us to record a number of changes in CHSTM's research profile. First, the departures:

  • Dr Fay Bound Alberti has become Lecturer in History at the University of Lancaster, where she continues work carried on at CHSTM on the changing status of the heart and emotions.
  • Dr Janet Greenlees is now Lecturer in History in the Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare, Glasgow Caledonian University. She too is building on work developed at CHSTM, in areas including occupational health.
  • Dr Ed Ramsden has moved to the London School of Economics as a researcher on the economic history project, "The nature of evidence: how well do facts travel?"
  • Dr Simone Turchetti is now a research assistant at the School of Geographical Sciences, University of Bristol, working on the history of subglacial exploration in Antarctica.

Our congratulations to all our departing staff on their appointments, and our best wishes for the future.

We also welcome a number of new appointments:

  • Dr Stephanie Snow, known to many in CHSTM as a former colleague, has rejoined us for a two-year project to work on contemporary history, funded as part of the Wellcome Strategic Award announced in July.
  • Dr Rob Kirk will be joining us shortly to take up a two-year project, also from the Wellcome Strategic Award, on diseases of civilisation.
  • Dr Emma Jones will join us for a year to work on diseases of public health in twentieth-century Manchester.

In addition, we welcome two new PhD students. Melissa Smith (supervisor Dr Jeff Hughes) will be working on Cold War culture and the 'nuclear citizen,' and Ian Miller (supervisor Prof Michael Worboys) on diseases of the stomach.

Lastly, neither arrivals nor departures: congratulations to Professor Jon Harwood on his recent chair, and to Ian Burney on his senior lectureship.

14 July 2006

Congratulations to Sandra Mols

It is a pleasure to announce that this morning, Sandra Mols passed her viva with Martin Campbell-Kelly and John Pickstone. Many congratulations to Sandra; and thanks to James and Jeff, and to all who assisted along the way.

11 July 2006

Last chance to see: Hip Histories

The temporary exhibition on the history of hip replacement, curated by Dr Francis Neary of CHSTM, closes at the end of July.

'Hip Histories' can be seen in the Qvist Gallery of the recently refurbished Hunterian Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons of England, Lincoln's Inn Fields, London. It was produced in association with Simon Chaplin and the John Charnley Trust as part of 'Innovation, Assessment and the Hip Prosthesis,' an ESRC project led by Professor John Pickstone in CHSTM. The exhibition uses objects, video and the personal accounts of innovators to reconstruct the story of the development of hip replacement from a variety of perspectives.

The Total Hip Replacement (THR) operation has been seen as a landmark in twentieth-century surgery and it is now one of the most performed elective surgical procedures. Since the early 1960s it has played an important role in alleviating pain and restoring mobility to millions of arthritis sufferers. 'Hip Histories' provides an insight into the pioneering contribution of one of the centres involved in its development: Wrightington Hospital, near Wigan. It explores the stories of some of the patients, nurses, surgeons, engineers and manufacturers involved with the development of an operation that changed the world.

Further details: Royal College of Surgeons exhibitions page | BBC News report | HERO profile

Update: Nerves of Steel

You may also want to listen to Nerves of Steel, Clare Jenkins' documentary on hip replacement and the Sheffield steel industry, which was broadcast on Radio 4 on 17 July. It features a brief 5- minute tour of the Wrightington museum about 10 minutes in.

07 July 2006

Largest ever Wellcome Trust Award for Research in the History of Medicine awarded to CHSTM

Our Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine has been awarded a Wellcome Trust Five-Year Strategic Award for work on Medicine and Modernity. The grant is for £752,000 over five years and is the largest ever awarded by the Trust's History of Medicine Panel. Professor Michael Worboys said that 'This is a tremendous achievement by our staff and will help secure our place as the leading research centre in Britain for the history of medicine since 1800.' The award also supports the Unit's Outreach Programme, where we will continue to work with a variety of groups locally, in the region and nationally. The Award provides for the appointment of five postdoctoral fellows who will assist staff with new programmes of research on: Diseases of Civilization; the Economics of Medicine, Medical Sciences and Technologies, Ecologies of Disease, and Contemporary History. The Wellcome Unit already has a large group of postdoctoral fellows working on projects from the history of sports medicine to the history of noise and hearing. Professor Worboys stated that 'The Award will also facilitate our research collaborations across the University. We are just completing a project on the history of the School of Biological Sciences and plan more work on the impact of the molecular revolution on modern biomedicine. We also have collaborations with staff in Schools such as Medicine, Nursing, Arts, Histories and Cultures, and Social Science, and with the Museum.'

26 May 2006

Conference: Computers in Use

On 22-23 July CHSTM will host a conference on 'Computers in use: historical and social perspectives'. The meeting will address representations of computers and their users (expert and non-expert) across a variety of periods and contexts.

For more information, please consult the Computers in use pages.

13 March 2006

Workshop: History of Clinical Iatrogenesis

30 years after the publication of Ivan Illich's controversial book Medical Nemesis , CHSTM hosts a one-day workshop on the history of problems and diseases that are caused by modern medicine itself. Date: 19 May 2006.

For the programme and further details, please visit the History of Clinical Iatrogenesis conference homepage.

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