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Robert Wheeler Rand Collection.1912-2004
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • UCLA Catalog Record ID
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Robert Wheeler Rand Collection,
    Date (inclusive): 1912-2004
    Collection number: 402
    Creator: Rand, Robert W. (Robert Wheeler) 1923-
    Extent: 5 cartons (7.5 linear ft.) 2 boxes (1.0 linear ft.) 2 flat boxes (3.0 linear ft.) 2 card file boxes (0.8 linear ft.) 1 small lantern slide box (0.25 linear ft.)
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library.Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library History and Special Collections for the Sciences
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1490
    Abstract: A collection of documents, publications, 35 mm and glass slides, and films chronicling Dr. Robert Rand's career as clinical neurosurgeon, researcher into innovative techniques of cancer treatments and microsurgery, and entrepreneur of medical equipment. Textual coverage of his extensive publications and lectures is sparse, except for the volumes of "Autobiography..." and "Academic History..." written by Rand. The visual material is extensive, however, consisting of circa 4500 35mm slides and 13 films. Some papers, mementos, and glass lantern slides belonging to Carl Wheeler Rand, M.D., father of Robert Rand and also an eminent neurosurgeon, are part of the collection.
    Physical location: Southern Regional Library Facility
    Language of Material: Collection materials inEnglish


    Collection is open for research, but access to some materials is restricted due to patient confidentiality protocols.

    Publication Rights

    Property rights in the physical objects belong to the UCLA Biomedical Library. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish if the Biomedical Library does not hold the copyright.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Robert Wheeler Rand collection (Manuscript collection 402). Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library History and Special Collections for the Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 7307666 

    Acquisition Information

    The materials were a gift to the UCLA Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library from Robert W. Rand, M.D., 2009.


    Robert Wheeler Rand was born in Los Angeles in 1923, son of Carl Wheeler Rand, M.D., a neurosurgeon, and Katherine Humphrey Rand, a former nurse. While a student at Harvard University he was drafted into the U.S. Navy V-12 Program, and under that program finished his pre-med studies at UCLA. Under orders he attended the University of Southern California School of Medicine as a Navel Cadet, and received his M.D. degree in 1947. In 1954, during the Korean War, Dr. Rand was recalled to naval service for two years.
    After leaving medical school Dr. Rand entered the University of Michigan surgical training program as an Intern, Assistant Resident in Surgery, and Resident in Neurosurgery at the University Hospital. He continued in Michigan to earn an M.S. in Surgery and a Ph.D. in Anatomy with Dr. Elizabeth Crosby, and became an Instructor in Surgery and Anatomy until 1952. After a short interval of clinical practice with his father back in Los Angeles, Dr. Rand was recruited in 1953 to join the Division of Neurosurgery at the new UCLA School of Medicine. A severe hepatitis attack in 1959 required a lengthy recuperation period for Dr. Rand, which he utilized for a sabbatical year in Paris to study stereotaxic surgery techniques with Professor Jean Talairach. Dr. Rand remained at UCLA until his retirement in 1990. In 1974 he added J.D. to his list of degrees.
    Dr. Rand's curriculum vitae (latest version, in his "Academic History...") presents an impressive overview of his career. In addition to teaching activities at UCLA, it lists 398 lectures, addresses, scientific presentations and exhibits, the publication of eight books and 239 articles, 65 abstracts, and a lengthy list of research projects. He produced important contributions to stereotaxic neurosurgery, to fetal brain tissue transplantation for Parkinson disease, to the use of the Leksell gamma knife in treatment of brain tumors, to microneurosurgery, and to the use of cryosurgery, electromagnetic hyperthermia, and infusion of Interleukin or other toxins for tumor treatments in many body locations. He was instrumental in creating a Neuroscience Institute at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles, and the The John Wayne Cancer Institute Neuro-oncology Program in Santa Monica, CA.
    In addition to teaching, clinical practice, and research, Dr. Rand also found time and energy to be an entrepreneur, holding patents and forming companies in medical and surgical instrumentation. He is presently residing in Santa Monica, California.

    Scope and Content

    After his retirement from UCLA Dr. Rand authored two autobiographical volumes, included in this collection, about his personal and professional lives. The first provides anecdotal accounts of family, education, exceptional patients, and new surgical techniques and equipment invented and/or tested. The second includes copies of his most important clinical and research papers, important correspondence, patents, and a very complete curriculum vitae. The collection's other textual materials add rather sparsely to Dr. Rand's clinical and research history, but they do document very well his commercial ventures with Nova Therapeutic Systems Inc. and other enterprises. Included are patents, business and marketing plans and presentations, and business correspondence. One small series of folders contains outlines, drafts, and correspondence related to creating a "medical thriller" novel or screenplay based on a neuroscience plot.
    The bulk of the collection consists of visual materials, mainly 35 mm slides and 35 mm motion pictures. They cover a variety of clinical practice and clinical research situations, many of which, unfortunately, were not identified. Access to any materials which name specific patients is restricted; contact the UCLA History and Special Collections for the Sciences Division for further information.
    Two cartons contain a variety of surgical instruments from two generations of neuroscientist, Dr. Robert W. Rand and his father, Dr. Carl W. Rand. Also included are diplomas, certificates, mementos, and glass lantern slides that belonged to Dr. Carl Rand.
    The collection is organized into the following series:
    • Series 1. Personal Materials, 1948-2004. 5 folders
    • Series 2. Professional Materials, 1955-2000. 103 folders (4500 35mm slides), 51 glass slides, 4 objects, 5 films, 3 tapes, 2 cartons instruments
    • Series 3. Patents, Commercial Activities, 1987-2004. 12 folders
    • Series 4. Materials for a Novel or Screenplay, 2000-2003. 5 folders
    • Series 5. Carl Wheeler Rand, M.D., 1912-1940. 8 folders
    • Series 6. Restricted Materials. 25 folders with ca. 670 35 mm slides, 8 films, 63 glass lantern slides

    Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

    COLLECTION CONTAINS DIGITAL MATERIALS: Special equipment or further processing may be required for viewing. To access digital materials you must notify the reference desk in advance of your visit.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


    Rand, Carl W. (Carl Wheeler), 1886-1972
    Rand, Robert W. (Robert Wheeler), 1923- Archives
    Gamma Knife Radiosurgery - history
    Neurosurgeons --California --Biography