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Niels Thorkild Rovsing

Born 1862
Died 1927

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Danish surgeon, born April 26, 1862, Flensborg; died January 14, 1927, Copenhagen.

Biography of Niels Thorkild Rovsing

Niels Thorkild Rovsing was the most renowned Danish surgeon at the beginning of the twentieth century. He graduated in medicine from the University of Copenhagen in 1885 and obtained his medical doctorate in 1899. Following his internship/hospital service he was surgeon at the Louise-Børnehospital 1892-902, and from 1896 to 1900 surgeon-in-chief at the Red Cross Hospital. From 1899 he was professor of operative surgery at the University of Copenhagen.

Initially his appointment did not provide him with hospital beds and he therefore commenced a private surgical nursing home to overcome this problem. In 1904 he was put in charge of the Frederiks Hospital as senior surgeon and, largely due to his advocation for better surgical accommodation, the Rigshospitalet was commenced in 1905 and opened in 1910.

Primarily famous as an abdominal surgeon, he wrote extensively on diseases of the bladder and gall bladder and became internationally recognised. His work on abdominal surgery (1910-1918) was translated into German and English. He was described as an inspiring teacher. In 1908, together with Eilert A. Tscherning (1851-1919), he founded the Danish Surgical Society (Dansk Kirurgisk Selskap). A heart disease forced him to retire in 1925 and he died two years later.

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