Blog by Dr Roger Smith

Burke and Hare, James Young Simpson, public hangings and the first use of CPR…just a few of the highlights of my Medical History Tour of Edinburgh.

For over 30 years, I have been taking delegates of the RCPE’s International Course in Medicine of the Older Adult on a Medical History Tour of Edinburgh as part of the course’s social programme. 

This course was first held in 1980 and now runs on an annual basis due to its increasing popularity. 

Edinburgh is, of course, steeped in medical history and the tour has proven to be extremely popular among delegates keen to learn more about its heritage and take in the City’s landmarks.

From grave robbing and public hangings, to medical pioneers such as James Young Simpson, who discovered the anaesthetic use of chloroform, and Robert Philip, a pioneer of tuberculosis control, we explore the fascinating world of Edinburgh’s medical heritage uncovering some interesting – and often dark – facts along the way!

Highlights of Dr Roger Smith’s Medical History Tour of Edinburgh