Dr James Robert Kyles

Personal details


10/07/1916 to 26/12/1992

Place of birth: Edinburgh

Nationality: British

Post nominals:

CRN: 507363

Also known as: Jimmy

Education and qualifications

General education

Daniel Stewart’s College, Edinburgh; Edinburgh University Medical School

Primary medical qualification(s)

LRCP&SEd LRFPGlas (the Scottish ‘Triple’), 1942

Initial Fellowship and type

FFARCS by Election

Year of Fellowship


Other qualification(s)

LDSRCSEd, 1940; DA(RCP&S), 1949

Professional life and career

Postgraduate career

Served in the RAMC, in Palestine & Normandy, for four years after qualifying, rising to the rank of Captain, also working as house surgeon to the Royal Northern Infirmary, Inverness sometime during that period. After WW2 he was supernumerary anaesthetist at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, then senior registrar at Bangour Hospital, Broxburn before being appointed consultant anaesthetist to the East Fife Hospitals, based in Kirkcaldy, in 1951. He retired in 1981.

Professional interests and activities

Jimmy was the first consultant anaesthetist in Fife, and had to organise and improve the service in a large and diverse area with scatterd cottage, maternity and general hospitals. The later development of a new district general hospital, the Victoria in Kirkcaldy, owed much to his foresight and innovative ideas: he brought the first electronic ventilator to Scotland, piloted an early central sterile supply service, introduced a staff ‘bleep’ system, and singlehandedly organised the hospital library for many years.

Clinical interests included epidural anaesthesia, producing a ‘Kyles’ modification of the ‘Wagner’ needle, research on diazepam & alcuronium, and organising an educational programme for anaesthetic technicians. He was president of both the Edinburgh & East (1965-6) and Scottish (1967-8) Societies of Anaesthetists.

Other biographical information

A distinguished rugby player, he was wing-forward for the formidable Stewart's FP team either side of WW2. He was married to Mary (Mimi) Helen Rennie and they had three daughters.

Author and Sources

Author: Dr Robert Palmer with assistance from Dr R A Bowie

Sources and any other comments: Obituary. BMJ 1992; 306: 1193 | A photograph can be seen at www.bmj.com/content/bmj/306/6886/1193.full.pdf