- A dictionary of medical eponyms

Frederick Eustace Batten

Born  1865-09-29
Died  1918

Related eponyms

English neurologist and paediatrician, born September 29, 1865; died 1918.

Biography of Frederick Eustace Batten

Fredrick Eustace Batten was the son of a prominent lawyer. He attended Westminster School and Trinity College, Cambridge, and graduated in medicine from St. Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, in 1891. He then worked as a pathologist to the Hospital for Sick Children, Great Ormond Street, while also working as a physician at the nearby National Hospital, Queen Square. He obtained his doctorate in 1895, became a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in 1901, and was elected dean in 1908. He died of a haemorrhage in 1918.

His research centred around the histology of disorders of the nervous system In 1952 the intensive care unit for patients with acute respiratory paralysis at the National Hospital was named the «Batten Unit» in his honour. He was described as «a brisk, lithe figure with a conspicuous domed head and lively eye, quick, tumbling speech in which the «r» was only negotiable as «w», bubbling humour and an intense interest in current affairs, but first and foremost concerned with the well-being of his patients and the parents, relatives, nurses and doctors who administered to them.»

Batten published more than 100 papers.


  • Case of myopathy - exhibiting slow relaxation of muscles after muscular action.
    Brain, Oxford, 1906, 29: 414.
  • Two cases of myotonia atrophica, showing a peculiar distribution of muscular atrophy.
    With H. P. Gibb. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine, London, Neurol Section, 1908; 32.
  • Myotonia atrphica.
    With H. P. Gibb. Brain, Oxford, 1909, 32: 187-205.
  • Acute poliomyelitis. London, 1916.
  • James Samuel Risien, F. E. Batten, J. S. Collier:

    Subacute combined degeneration of the spinal cord.
    Brain, Oxford, 1900, 23: 39-110.
  • James Samuel Risien, F. E. Batten, J. S. Collier:
    Subacute combined degeneration of the spinal cord.
    Brain, Oxford, 1900, 23: 39-110.
  • Archibald Edward Garrod (1857-1936) and H. Thursfield:
    Diseases of children. London, 1913.
    Batten contributed to this book with a classic account of neuromuscular conditions. Biographical:
  • Isidor Fischer, publisher:
    Biographisches Lexikon der hervorragenden Ärzte der letzten fünfzig Jahre.
    Berlin – Wien, Urban & Schwarzenberg, 1932.
  • Peter Beighton & Gretha Beighton:
    The Man Behind the Syndrome. Springer-Verlag, Berlin-Heidelberg, 1986.

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