He was the son of Enfield Highway farmer Charles William Sutton and was educated at the local school. He then entered a private anatomy school run by Thomas Cooke, F.R.C.S., teaching anatomy to earn enough money to study at the Middlesex Hospital, becoming a lecturer there from 1886 to 1896. In 1886 he also became an Assistant Surgeon, specializing in pelvic operations on women. In 1889 he changed his name from John Bland Sutton to John Bland-Sutton. In 1905 he was appointed Surgeon at the Middlesex Hospital, resigning in 1920 to become Consulting Surgeon. 
Knighted in 1912, Bland-Sutton was President of the Royal Society of Medicine between 1920 and 1922 and of the Royal College of Surgeons of England from 1923 to 1925. He delivered the Bradshaw lecture at the Royal College of Surgeons in 1917. Interested in zoology, he served as vice-President of the Zoological Society of London. In 1925 he was created a Baronet, of Middlesex Hospital in the County of London.
He died in December 1936 and at his own request his ashes were given to the Museum of the Middlesex Hospital. He had married twice; firstly in 1886 Agnes Hobbs of Didcot and secondly in 1899 Edith Goff Bigg (1865-1943), the younger daughter of Henry Heather Bigg. They had no children and his title became extinct.
- Ligaments (1887)
- Evolution and disease (1890)
- Tumours, innocent and malignant (1893); several editions
- Diseases of women (1897)
- Gall-stones and diseases of the bile-ducts (1907)
- Man and beast in eastern Ethiopia (1911)
- Selected lectures and essays (1920)
- Orations and addresses (1924)
- The story of a surgeon (1930)
- Men and creatures in Uganda (1933)
- "Bland-Sutton, John". Who's Who. Vol. 59. 1907. p. 169.
- Bett, W. R. (1956). Sir John Bland-Sutton, 1855–1936. Edinburgh: E. & S. Livingstone.
- "Biographical entry - Bland-Sutton, Sir John (1855 - 1936)". Royal College of Surgeons. Retrieved 16 May 2015.
- "The Late Sir John Bland-Sutton, Bart". Can Med Assoc J. 36 (3): 295. March 1937. PMC . PMID 20320574.
- The London Gazette: . 3 July 1925.
- "Review: The Story of a Surgeon by Sir John Bland-Sutton". The Spectator. 16 May 1930. p. 32.
|Baronetage of the United Kingdom|
(of Middlesex Hospital)