- A dictionary of medical eponyms

John Hans Menkes

Born  1928

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Austrian-American paediatrician and writer, born 1928, Vienna.

Biography of John Hans Menkes

John Hans Menkes was born in Vienna. In 1939, following the German annexation of Austria, the family fled Austria and immigrated to the USA via Ireland. Menkes was then eleven years old. Menkes, son and grandson of physicians, followed the family tradition and studied medicine, despite his wish to become a journalist.

Dr. Menkes earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Southern California and his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He completed his internship at Children's Medical Center in Boston, his paediatric residency at Bellevue Hospital in New York City, and his neurology and paediatric neurology residency at the Neurological Institute of New York, Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center. He served on the faculty of Johns Hopkins for six years before joining UCLA.

Menkes became head of paediatric neurology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and later at the University of California, Los Angele. For most of his career, Menkes was affiliated with the medical school of the University of California-Los Angeles, where over the course of more than two decades starting in 1966, he held a number of professorships in paediatrics, neurology, and psychiatry.

In 1974 he entered private practice but returned to academic medicine in 1984 as professor of neurology and paediatrics at UCLA.

In 1997 he was named director of paediatric neurology at the Los Angeles’ Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

Menkes has published numerous papers and a textbook of child neurology. He has also written several novels, screenplays and a stage play dealing with the holocaust. He has received some literary prizes.

He was named one of the "Best Doctors in America" in 1992, 1994 and 1996 and was among the "American Men and Women of Science" in 1996.


  • John H. Menkes, Harvey B. Sarnat, Bernard L. Maria, editors:
    Child Neurology.
    7th edition, revised. Lippincott Wiiliams and Wilkins 2005. 1100 pages.
    6th edition, 2000/2004.
    4th edition. Lea & Fibiger, 1990.
  • The angry puppet syndrome. New York : Demos Medical Publishing, 1999.
  • After the tempest. A Novel. Daniel & Daniel Publishers. 2003
  • The Last Inquisitor. Play. A holocost drama in eight scenes.
  • Lady Macbeth. A play.
  • Peter Beighton & Gretha Beighton:
    The Man Behind the Syndrome. Springer-Verlag, Berlin-Heidelberg, 1986.
  • Jeremy M. Norman, editor:
    Morton’s Medical Bibliography. An annotated Check-list of Texts Illustrating the History of Medicine (Garrison and Morton).
    Fifth edition. Scolar Press, 1991.

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