Fiona Wood was born in a coal mining village in Yorkshire, England in 1958 where she lived with her parents and three siblings. She attended early schooling at Frickley and Ackworth schools. Young Fiona wanted to pursue sports and later mathematics and science. She fondly remembers that it was her mother and brother, Geoff, who encouraged her to do medicine. While a medical student at St Thomas’ Hospital Medical School in London, Ms Wood, was determined to become a surgeon and pursue research. The impression made on her by the Staff (Plastic) Surgeon, Mr Brian Mayou, helped channel her interest in plastic surgery. Ms Wood’s growing surgical experience and vision for innovation flourished during her time at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital. It was here that she was exposed to many forms of scarring, including old burns, which piqued her curiosity and instilled in her a lifelong dedication to burns medicine. She moved to the Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead, Sussex, where Mr Mayou worked. The Queen Victoria Hospital is known for the Guinea Pig Club, an association formed in 1941 by patients who had undergone experimental reconstructive plastic surgery during World War II for burn injuries sustained in plane crashes. The term ‘guinea pig’ reflected the investigational nature of the work carried out, and the new equipment designed specifically to treat burn injuries. In 1987, Ms Wood, and husband, Tony Kierath, moved to Australia and connected with the late Harold McComb, an Internationally-renowned plastic and reconstructive surgeon. He helped provide Ms Wood perspective about how she would envision herself as a surgeon (Fig. 1).
- Plastic surgery