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05 September 2010

Eric Derk Crichton (1919 - ) gynecologist.

Derk's father, Eric Cuthbert Crichton was Professor of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at Cape Town University. Derk graduated from Cape Town University with an MD and a B.Ch in 1944. He was registered as a member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (M.R.C.O.G.) in 1952 and graduated from Oxford University with a D.Phil in 1953 and became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh the same year. He was then appointed professor of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at Natal University (now the University of KwaZulu-Natal), and Head of the Division of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, King Edward VIII and McCord's Hospitals, Durban, South Africa. 

In 1972 Dr Crichton was found guilty of providing safe abortions for unmarried white women in the Durban area. The trial was heavily covered in the South African press, and as a result the Apartheid government passed new laws in 1975 to restrict abortion for white women. 

Crichton wrote a much cited paper on the value of Cephalo-Pelvimetry.

In 1993, when he wrote a paper on gender surgery for the South African Medical Journal, he had done 58 such surgeries over the previous 24 years. His most famous patient in this regard was Lauren Foster.

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