It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our founder, mentor, teacher and friend, Dr. Peter Fowler. Surrounded by his family, and somewhat fittingly, Dr. Fowler passed away at University Hospital in London, ON, a place in which he carved out much of his trailblazing career.
“We are all feeling the loss in the soul of the clinic today,” says Dr. Robert Litchfield, Medical Director, Fowler Kennedy Clinic, “It is impossible to articulate the reach and impact of Dr. Fowler’s career. He leaves an enduring legacy in sport medicine, the medical community in London, Ontario and Canada and across campus at Western University.”
The former medical director of Fowler Kennedy Sport Medicine Clinic, and clinic namesake passed away with his family by his side on November 16, 2022. Dr. Fowler was appointed to The Order of Canada in 2018. Dr. Fowler was a pioneer in his contributions to the development of sport medicine in Canada.
With his career start as the first orthopedic surgical resident at Western University under the mentorship of the late Dr. Jack Kennedy, Dr. Fowler learned about and went on to perfect surgical techniques and rehabilitation using an arthroscope in aid of injured elite and amateur athletes from across the country. Following the completion of his residency, he and Dr. Kennedy would go on to grow what began in 1974 as a small athletic injuries’ clinic into one of the largest, most comprehensive sport medicine clinics in North America, The Fowler Kennedy Sport Medicine Clinic.
Dr. Fowler was elected as the president of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sport Medicine, the most influential society in this specialty, where he was one of only two Canadians to ever be honoured with this position. He was also the first president of the International Society of Arthroscopy and Knee Surgery and Orthopaedic Sports Medicine (ISAKOS), which is now to be the largest and most influential sport medicine society internationally.
Dr. Fowler also played an important role with respect to research, having published several hundred peer-reviewed papers and dozens of book chapters. He was particularly proud of the work that the Fowler Kennedy team published in the New England Journal of Medicine that compared knee arthroscopy to non-operative care for knee arthritis. This paper was awarded the Canadian Institute for Health-Canadian Medical Association Journal Top Achievements in Health Research for 2009 and continues to have tremendous impact in the use of arthroscopy worldwide.
In building the Fowler Kennedy Clinic, Dr. Fowler’s vision was to create a clinic in which surgeons would work alongside primary care physicians, physiotherapists, and athletic therapists with a common goal of providing the best possible care to injured athletes. This focus on collaboration that includes the two major institutional partners, Western University and London Health Sciences Centre, is such an important part of his ongoing legacy and the legacy of the Fowler Kennedy Sport Medicine Clinic.
On behalf of Dr. Fowler’s family, Fowler Kennedy Sport Medicine Clinic invites everyone to join in celebrating Dr. Fowler on Saturday, May 13, 2023, from 2 – 4 p.m. in Alumni Hall, Western University. Please join us by registering at the link below.