Dr Jeffrey Selwyn Crawford

Personal Details

Dr Jeffrey Selwyn Crawford MBChB FFARCS FRCOG DA

15/08/1992 to 16/08/1988

Place of birth: Newcastle upon Tyne

Nationality: British

CRN: 727055

Also known as: Jeff

Education and qualifications

General education

Hull Grammar School; Leeds University Medical School

Primary medical qualification(s)

MBChB, Leeds, 1947

Initial Fellowship and type

FFARCS by Election

Year of Fellowship


Other qualification(s)

DA(RCP&S), 1952

Professional life and career

Postgraduate career

Early appointments were in Dewsbury: house physician, Staincliffe Hospital; casualty officer, General Infirmary; and assistant anaesthetist & RMO at Staincliffe again. He then served in the RAF as a ‘recognised anaesthetist’ until 1952 when he became registrar at Leicester Royal Infirmary, followed by a senior registrar post at the Central Middlesex Hospital. He then spent several years abroad, taking up a fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh in 1956, then a similar post at New York’s Presbyterian Columbia Hospital before working as a staff anesthesiologist at the University of Chicago. He spent a year (1960/61) as MRC Fellow in obstetric anaesthesia in Aberdeen before returning to Chicago. In 1965 he returned to the UK as deputy director of the Research Department of Anaesthetics at RCSEng where, in 1967, his advice was sought on the anaesthetic services for a new maternity hospital to be built on the Queen Elizabeth campus in Birmingham. Later he was persuaded to take up the position of full time consultant obstetric anaesthetist, subsequently building a service with an international reputation, working there until his retirement in 1988. He had planned to continue his audit activities into retirement, but his sudden death was only two weeks later.

Professional interests and activities

His contributions to obstetric anaesthesia were immense, and with significant contributions, notably promoting epidural blood patch in the UK for dural puncture headache, being one of the small group of clinicians who rehabilitated spinal anaesthesia in the UK in the 1970s, and pursuing audit of outcomes. His book, ‘Principles and Practice of Obstetric Anaesthesia’, first appeared in 1971, ran to several editions and was required reading for many generations of FFA candidates. His work was recognised by the Obstetric Anaesthetists Association which make him its founder president (1969-76) and awarded him its Glod Medal in 1981, and by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists which awarded him its Fellowship ad eundam in 1977 and invited him to give the Simpson Oration in 1982.

Other biographical information

Married to Eve, they had four sons. He always enjoyed sports, was a frequent visitor to The Reddings sportsground, and was a keen cricketer, golfer and walker.

Author and Sources

Author: Dr Robert Palmer

Sources and any other comments: Obituary. BMJ 1989; 298: 957 | www.oaa-anaes.ac.uk/ui/content/content.aspx?ID=70 accessed on 13/12/2017