Cuthbert Dukes

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Cuthbert Esquire Dukes OBE (1890–1977) was an English physician and pathologist and author, for whom the Dukes classification for colorectal cancer is named.


Born in Bridgwater, Somerset, Dukes was educated at Caterham School and graduated with an M.D. thesis entitled Effect of severe haemorrhage and shock on the condition of the blood from the University of Edinburgh in 1914.[1] His field of choice was pathology and he would make many great contributions to the world of medicine over the course of his career. He served in the Royal Army Medical Corps that was attached to the Rifle Brigade during World War I and was awarded the OBE for his services. After the war's end he became a demonstrator in bacteriology at University College in London, and in 1922, was the first pathologist to join the staff of St Mark's Hospital. It was there that he began his recognized studies on the pathology of colon cancer. He wrote several books based on his findings.

A meticulous researcher who took personal pleasure in the many cases in which his findings helped patients with colon cancer, Dukes, apparently in accordance to his humble Quaker faith, refused all honours despite the wishes of his former colleagues and lived quietly at his home in Wimbledon until his death at the age of 86.

He was the younger brother of British playwright Ashley Dukes and MI6 agent Sir Paul Dukes.


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  1. ^ Dukes, Cuthbert Esquire. "Effect of severe haemorrhage and shock on the condition of the blood". Edinburgh Research Archive. Retrieved 21 April 2017.

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