Behind the masks

Find more out about the individuals and teams featured in Surgeons: At the edge of Life.

Andrew Carrothers, consultant surgeon

Landscape picture of consultant surgeon Andrew Carrothers
Andrew Carrothers

Addenbrooke’s hospital consultant surgeon, Andrew Carrothers, knew from a young age the specialism he wanted to follow.

As a medical student he set his heart on becoming a consultant orthopaedic surgeon, having seen how even routine procedures like hip and knee replacements can transform a patient’s quality of life.

Read more about Andrew and his team, who were featured in episode 1.

Ronan O’Leary, consultant anaesthetist

Headshot of Ronan O'Leary smiling at the camera wearing an orange jumper and grey jacket.
Ronan O'Leary

Ronan started training in anaesthesia in around 2005 in Yorkshire. He wanted to do intensive care medicine and anaesthesia as it has has lots of complementary skills.

Today, when he isn’t working as a consultant anaesthetist with Andrew on patients with complex pelvic surgery, he has another considerable responsibility. As consultant intensivist specialty lead for Neurosciences and Trauma he runs a large intensive care unit and is involved in the treatment of the some of the sickest and most complex patients within the NHS.

Read more about Ronan and his team, who were featured in episode 1.

Charles Malata, consultant surgeon

Charles Malata headshot
Charles Malata

One of the reasons consultant surgeon, Charles Malata, went into plastic surgery is he can instantly see how his speciality helps patients. He finds that “exciting and exhilarating”.

Charles qualified as a general surgeon at St James’ University Hospital in Leeds in 1990 and then as a plastic surgeon in 1997 at the world-famous Canniesburn Hospital in Glasgow.

Almost two years of super-specialty fellowships in breast and cosmetic surgery in the USA followed, before becoming a consultant at Addenbrooke’s in 1999. He was appointed research professor, and visiting professor of Anglia Ruskin University, in 2013.

Read more about Charles and his team, who were featured in episode 2.

Richard Mannion, neurosurgeon

Headshot of Richard Mannion
Richard Mannion

Neurosurgeon Richard Mannion, put his skills to the test to remove a rare type of tumour, called an acoustic neuroma, from the brain of 47-year-old father of four Gulraiz.

The micro-dissection will take several hours, but Richard has been a surgeon for more than 20 years and won’t shrink from the task. As a medical student he was “hooked” on neuro-surgery the moment he witnessed a brain operation.

Richard added “As a trainee, it is the medical details that you find fascinating, but the older you get, the clearer it becomes that it is all about the patient. The variety in this work keeps it interesting every day, but the most rewarding part of the job is being a key part of people’s lives and helping them to overcome pain or disability.”

Read more about Richard, who featured in episode 2.

Patrick Axon, ENT surgeon

Patrick Axon  headshot
Patrick Axon

Patrick has a special interest in otology (the study of anatomy and diseases of the ear), hearing implants, and skull base surgery. He has an international reputation for the management of middle and inner ear disease, as well as skull base pathology, accepting referrals from around the world. He is past president of the British Skull Base Society and Chairs the National Acoustic Neuroma Audit.

Read more about Patrick, who featured in episode 3.

Emmanuel Huguet - consultant surgeon

Mr Emmanuel Huguet
Emmanuel Huguet

As a fresh-faced young medical student consultant hepato-pancreato-biliary and liver transplant surgeon, Emmanuel Huguet, had what he describes as a “seminal moment”.

He had gone to medical school without any preconceptions about what field of medicine he would eventually pursue, but was completely “awestruck” after watching his first major abdominal operation.

What impressed Emmanuel was the way surgeons and theatre staff from different fields, with different expertise, and different levels of experience, were united by one shared purpose – caring for the anaesthetised patient.

Emmanuel says he found it a “profound and transcending experience” and he still feels that about the theatre environment today.

Read more about Emmanuel, who featured in episode 4.