b.2 October 1865 d.5 November 1948
MD Lond FRCS(1893) FRCP(1905)
James Sequeira was born in London, the son of J. Scott Sequeira, M.R.C.S, and the sixth, in direct descent, of a line of doctors. He was educated at King’s College School and studied medicine at the London Hospital, qualifying in 1889; he won the Hutchinson prize and took the F.R.C.S. in 1893. His first years as a doctor were spent in junior appointments at the London Hospital, the North-West London Fever Hospital and the North-Eastern Hospital for Children, and in postgraduate studies at Vienna and at Copenhagen, where he worked under Finsen, whose Phototherapy he translated in 1901. In 1902 he was elected assistant physician to the London Hospital, with charge of the light therapy department — the first of its kind to be instituted in England — and of the skin department. He went on to make his name as a specialist in skin diseases, and his textbook, Diseases of the Skin, first published in 1911, reached a fifth edition in 1947. In the 1914-1918 War, he acted as a consultant on dermatology to military hospitals in London. He retired from the active staff of the London Hospital in 1927 and made his home in Kenya for the rest of his life. There he continued to take an interest in matters of medical significance, particularly in leprosy and the susceptibility of Africans to disease. He edited the East African Medical Journal for ten years, and delivered the Chadwick lecture, while on a visit to London, in 1932. During the 1939-1945 War he served as a consultant to military hospitals in East Africa. Sequeira, short, sturdy, with his leonine head, benign expression and dignified bearing, was a memorable figure in hospital wards. He died in Kenya, survived by his wife and two adopted children.
G H Brown
[Lancet, 1948; B.M.J., 1948; Times, 26 Nov. 1948]
(Volume IV, page 467)
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