About the Unit










Princess Elizabeth Orthopaedics Center (PEOC)




The Princess Elizabeth Orthopaedic Center (PEOC) was preceded by the Orthopaedic Hospital, opened in 1927 by the Duchess of York. The hospital was subsequently named after the Duchess's daughter, Princess Elizabeth, the present Queen. 


The first Orthopeadic surgeon, Norman Capener, was appointed in 1931 aftering returning from a fellowship in America. Christopher Weatherley, appointed in 1986, was the first consultant to focus purely on spinal surgery in Exeter. The Princess Elizabeth Orthopaedic Hospital quickly became the hub of spinal surgery in the South West and to this day PEOC provides a majority of spinal deformity services in the South West Peninsula.  


Exeter further cemented its spinal surgery reputation when Eduardo Luque, an orthopaedic resident at the time, helped expand the use of sublaminar wiring technique prevelant in spinal surgery during the 1970-80s. Daniel Chan, an expert in anterior lumbar surgery, was appointed as a consultant in 1996. He helped introduce microscope-aided surgery which is now the norm in operations such as microdiscectomies. PEOC opened at its current Wonford site in 1997 and the spinal unit now comprises of 6 consultant spinal surgeons in addition to offering clinical fellowships to surgical trainees from around the world.