MD., MNAMS, DNB (Endo), FRACP (Endo), PhD (Endo), FRCP (Edin)
Professor Simon Rajaratnam, Professor and Head of Endocrinology, retired on 23rd August, 2020. Simon was brought up in Chittoor in Andhra Pradesh. He belonged to the MBBS Batch of 1978. After completing his MBBS at Christian Medical College Vellore, he proceeded for his sponsorship obligation at Vandavasi.
He returned to Christian Medical College Vellore for his MD in General Medicine in 1988. As an MD registrar he was known for his sharp clinical skills and diligence in making spectacular diagnoses. He completed the course with honors and was awarded the Jacob Chandy Medal for the best outgoing student in General Medicine for the year 1991. Following this he proceeded to do his sponsorship obligation at Scudder Memorial Hospital at Ranipet. It was around this time that the Department of Endocrinology was conceived under professor M.S. Seshadri. Dr. Simon Joined the department in 1995, which at that time was manned by skeleton staffing. He took an immediate interest towards the specialty and became one of the pillars of endocrinology for CMC Vellore and South India for the next two and a half decades. During the initial days of the department, Dr. Simon was extremely resourceful and hardworking and showed incredible resilience in running the system almost singleton when Dr. Seshadri had gone on sabbatical from 1998 and Dr. Nihal was on Study leave in Australia.
Dr. Simon completed his DNB in endocrinology, and soon after, the department became the first in Southern India to have an academic endocrinology training programme. One of his major academic achievements was that he pioneered work in the area of neuroendocrinology and particularly that of pituitary disease, which materialized into a PhD in the area. He worked very closely with the doyens of pituitary surgery initially with Dr. Mathew Chandy and, subsequently with Dr. Rajashekhar and Dr. Ari Chacko. He established a working team with neuropathology and together they had a fruitful relationship which lasted almost two decades resulting in several research papers in the area of pituitary disease. His research work on the impact of different intra-operative steroid regimenson diabetes insipidus following pituitary surgery is widely quoted and seminal in the field of neuroendocrinology. He also worked closely with endocrine surgery, nuclear medicine and molecular pathology in the area of molecular genetics for adrenal and thyroid disease. He has published more than 100 research papers over the years. He has been honored with an FRACP in Endocrinology and FRCP.
He was the Head of Endocrinology Unit-II from 2009, and was Head of the Department of Endocrinology from 2016 till his superannuation. Simon was loved by his students. Generally quiet in nature, he was a very caring person and this reflected in his attitude towards both medical and non-medical personnel in the endocrinology department. He was appreciated for his clinical skills during his study leave in Adelaide and sabbatical at Muscat. Dr. Simon has contributed to community life on the CMC Campus and his family members continue contribute to the CMC, Vellore campus: Prof Anna Simon, Professor in Pediatric Endocrinology, Dr. Andrew who has joined for MD in pediatrics and Alex who is doing his architecture training at VIT. The CMC, Vellore community and the Department of Endocrinology join in thanking Simon for his contributions to the clinical development of endocrinology and his contributions to CMC, Vellore, and wish him well as he enters this new phase of life through retirement.