Views & Reviews Medical Classics

Guerilla Surgeon

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 18 August 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c4484
  1. Paul Corwin, general practitioner, Cass, New Zealand
  1. paulcorwinandsallyw{at}

    Guerilla Surgeon is a long forgotten medical classic. Lindsay Rogers was a New Zealand surgeon working in Egypt during the second world war who volunteered to work as a surgeon behind enemy lines with the Yugoslav partisans. He was initially sent to Vis, an island off the Dalmatian coast, and later to Croatia and Slovenia. His account, though beautifully written, often contrasts with his rather idyllic earlier life on a farm in the South Island. His surgical work was done in conditions that were daunting, to say the least. He supervised five guerilla hospitals that were hidden in the forests, often near to German troops. The hospitals had to be well …

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