Harold Leeming Sheehan (1900-1988) was an English physician and pathologist
initiated much experimental work designed to elucidate the pathogenesis of both pituitary necrosis and renal cortical necrosis
- Born on August 4, 1900 in Carlisle
- Educated at Carlisle Grammar School
- 1921 – MB ChB, University of Manchester
- 1921-1927 General practice with older brother in the practice of their father Dr Patrick Sheehan
- 1927 – Demonstrator, and later a lecturer, in the department of pathology in the University of Manchester. Working with John Shaw Dunn, whose chief interest was in renal disease, with whom he undertook experimental work on renal function
- 1931 – MD, thesis on the deposition of dyes in the mammalian kidney
- 1932 – MSc, thesis on the renal elimination of injected urea and creatinine
- 1934 – Rockefeller medical fellowship to continue his studies on renal function; department of pharmacology, Johns Hopkins medical school in Baltimore
- 1935-1941 Director of research at the Glasgow Royal Maternity Hospital, quickly becoming an international expert on the pathology of pregnancy.
- Over the course of six short years, Sheehan: analysed the effects of obstetrical shock; differentiated fatty liver of delayed chloroform poisoning and primary fatty liver of pregnancy; demonstrated reactivation of latent rheumatic heart disease induced by pregnancy; clarified the effects of eclampsia upon the liver and kidneys; identified the encephalopathy of hyperemesis gravidarum as Wernicke’s disease; recognized the association between concealed accidental haemorrhage and renal cortical necrosis and recognized that obstetrical shock and haemorrhage could induce necrosis of the anterior lobe of the pituitary gland…
- 1941-1946 Deputy director of pathology to the allied forces in Italy, with the rank of colonel
- 1965 – Retired from chair of pathology;
- Died on October 25, 1988
Key Medical Contributions
- Dunn JS, Kay WW, Sheehan HL. The elimination of urea by the mammalian kidney. J Physiol. 1931 Dec 17;73(4):371-81.
- Kay WW, Sheehan HL. The renal elimination of injected urea and creatinine. J Physiol. 1933 Oct 25;79(4):359-415
- Sheehan HL, Southworth H. The renal elimination of phenol red. J Physiol. 1934 Nov 12;82(4):438-58
- Sheehan HL. Post-partum necrosis of the anterior pituitary. The Journal of Pathology and Bacteriology 1937; 45(1): 189-214
- Sheehan HL. Post-Partum Necrosis of the Anterior Pituitary. Trans Edinb Obstet Soc. 1938;58:13-28.
- Sheehan HL, Murdoch R. Post-partum necrosis of the anterior pituitary: Pathological and clinical aspects. J Obstet Gynaecol Br Emp 1938; 45: 456-472
- Sheehan HL. Simmonds’s disease due to post-partum necrosis of the anterior pituitary. Quarterly Journal of Medicine, Oxford. 1939; 8(4): 277–309
- Shaw Dunn J, Sheehan HL, Mcletchie NGB. Necrosis of islets of langerhans produced experimentally. Lancet 1943; 241(6242): 484-487
- Sheehan HL, Summers VK. The syndrome of hypopituitarism, Quarterly Journal of Medicine, Oxford, 1949; 18(4): 319–378
- Sheehan HL, Moore HC. Renal Cortical Necrosis And The Kidney Of Concealed Accidental Haemorrhage. 1952
- Sheehan HL. Atypical Hypopituitarism. Proc R Soc Med. 1961 Jan;54(1):43-8.
- Sheehan HL, Lynch JB. Pathology of toxemia of pregnancy. 1973
- Sheehan HL, Davis JC. Post-partum hypopituitarism. 1982
- Obituary. H L Sheehan. British Medical Journal 1988; 297
- Wilson BA, Willis MS. Sheehan, Harold Leeming (1900–1988). Pioneers in Pathology, 2017: 483–488
- Biography: Harold Leeming Sheehan. Lives of the Fellows of the Royal College of Physicians of London. Munk’s Roll: Volume VIII: 455.
- Bibliography. Sheehan, H. L. (Harold Leeming). WorldCat Identities
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