Respiratory/Thoracic Medicine
Designatory Letters: 
MB Glasg 1939, MD Glasg 1949, FRCPS Glasg 1949, MRCP Edin 1950, FRCP Edin 1956

(Contributed by Tom Smith)

Andrew Lees, who died of cerebrovascular disease aged 90 on 2nd August, was a dedicated chest physician whose career, spent mostly in Ruchill and Duntocher Hospitals, Glasgow, spanned the years from the fight against tuberculosis to the development of effective treatments of lung cancer. Among his 80 publications in peer-reviewed journals, the earliest were on the effects of streptomycin, ethionamide, ethambutol and rifampicin on tuberculosis. Andrew was instrumental in their introduction into medicine.

His later interests were in chronic obstructive lung disease, asthma and lung cancer. He reported the first case of Legionnaire’s disease in Scotland. He wrote on the pulmonary effects of rheumatoid diseases and the use of bleomycin in inoperable lung cancer. He taught medical students and postgraduates, his lectures combining clinical content with a pawky sense of humour that delighted colleagues, students and friends alike.

A Fellow of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of Edinburgh and Glasgow, and of the American College of Chest Physicians, he still found time to study Law. He was admitted to Gray’s Inn as a barrister in 1956.

Born in South Ayrshire in 1916, Andrew lived in Glasgow from the age of 10, qualifying there in September 1939 just in time to go to war, in which he served with the Chindits.

Andrew and his wife Nancy had sixty happy years together. They had a son, three daughters and five grandchildren, to whom they were devoted. His son, Wilson, said of him ‘If anyone went through life, steering the correct course, at all times, then it was this very singular man, of very singular talent and nature.’ Everyone who knew Andrew would agree.