Personal profile


  • Head of the Academic Surgery Unit

Principle investigator in the following studies:

  • The role of cerebral emboli in the causation of Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia funded by the Welcome Trust
  • The detection of venous to arterial circulations shunts (v-sCs): An evaluation of available techniques funded by British Heart Foundation
  • Development of engineered compression stockings for DVT prophylaxis funded by ATM and the Clothworkers’ Foundation
  • The role of venous to arterial circulation shunts, cerebral emboli and endothelial dysfunction in migraine funded by British Heart Foundation, Migraine Trust and Migraine Action
  • An evaluation of potential therapies to inhibit cerebral emboli in dementia funded by the Alzheimer’s Society.
  • An NIHR-HTA funded project on the development of an algorithm to predict when elective AAA repair optimises survival.
  • A recently established collaboration to explore whether carotid plaque volume predicts stroke risk.
  • A recently established collaboration to research the symptoms suffered by women with pelvic vein incompetence and to conduct a major-case control study on pelvic vein incompetence in women with chronic pelvic pain syndrome.

Manchester Vein Clinic:

Founding chairman of the Vascular Governance North West Programme

Clinical Director of the Greater Manchester AAA Screening Programme

Chairman of the Steering Committee for a North West College of Academic Surgeons



Professor McCollum was appointed Professor of Surgery and Head of the Department of Surgery in the University of Manchester in 1989 and is an Honorary Consultant Surgeon at South Manchester University Hospital. The Academic Surgery Unit includes the Breast Unit which was developed to achieve an International reputation for research in surgical oncology now directed by Professor Nigel Bundred. Professor McCollum was previously trained in Birmingham and Leeds before being appointed Lecturer to Sir Geoffrey Slaney in Birmingham in 1978. He moved to London in 1983 as Senior Lecturer and subsequently Reader in Surgery in the University of London and Honorary Consultant Surgeon to Charing Cross Hospital. He is a Vascular Surgeon with a tertiary referral practice in carotid artery disease, cerebral perfusion, complex aneurysm surgery, including thoraco-abdominal aneurysm and in complex venous disease.
His initial research was on the role of intravascular emboli on the causation of pulmonary damage (shock lung) in surgical shock. He gained an international reputation for developing an Indium-labelled platelet technique for measuring thrombus growth in arterial disease and vascular prostheses leading to research contracts evaluating novel platelet inhibitory drugs. This early research led to the Moynihan Prize at the Association of Surgeons (UK), two Patey Prizes at the Surgical Research Society of Great Britain and the Hunterian Professorship at the Royal College of Surgeons of in 1985. His recent focus was to establish a cardiovascular epidemiology group in close collaboration with the Department of Public Health and Epidemiology in Manchester. It was research on paradoxical embolism as a cause of stroke in young adults that led to the hypothesis that multiple asymptomatic paradoxical micro-emboli over many years may be the cause of dementia. This led to a collaboration with Old Age Psychiatry leading to substantial funding from the Wellcome Trust and Alzheimer’s Society for research on cerebral emboli as a cause of dementia. Subsequently the team also explored the role of cerebral emboli in migraine and dialysis related cerebral injury.

Professor McCollum has been encouraging national committees to adopt abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) screening since 1995.  This enthusiasm led to national adoption 2011 with Greater Manchester being the first to implement AAA Screening.  Subsequently the AAA research team were awarded a major NIHRT-HTA grant to develop algorithms caluculating when elective AAA repair optimises survival for individual patients.  The Manchester team have acquired unique skills in predicting risk associated with major surgery and have now establisehd the CPET study group. His team continue to investigate which patients are at risk of venous insufficiency and venous ulceration. This includes a retrospective cohort study comparing the frequency of venous insufficiency in patients undergoing hip and arm surgery and a study to investigate the frequency of DVT following ankle injur. He is also looking at a novel technique using ultrasound contrast to measure calf vein blood flow and measure the effects of standard compression stockings. Professor McCollum's venous team are developing a novel technology for the automated manufacture of bespoke compression hosiery based on laser profiling of the legs.

Professor McCollum has published over 400 papers including over 300 on original research. Recent grant income includes project grant funding from the NIHR-HTA, British Heart Foundation, Wellcome Trust, Alzheimer’s Society and Cancer Research Campaign in addition to grants from the manufactures of vascular grafts or devices, and the pharmaceutical industry. (Total £3.85 million since 2000).

Research interests

Professor McCollum’s research is in arterial and venous disease. He leads a research team of fellows, scientists and technicians, and his collaborations are with various disciplines including particularly epidemiology, neuro-imaging, mental health and stroke medicine. Research teams are assembled to investigate the role of cerebral emboli in dementia, migraine and dialysis-related brain injury.
Special research interests include:

Arterial Disease

  • Carotid surgery, angioplasty and stenting
  • Extra-cranial and upper limb arterial disease
  • Thoraco-abdominal and peri-renal aortic aneurysm
  • Endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR)
  • Screening for abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA)
  • The indication to repair AAA perioperative risk and predicition of survival
  • Paradoxical embolism
  • Cerebral embolism

Venous disease

  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Venous thromboembolism
  • Chronic venous insufficiency
  • Varicose veins (VVs)
  • Leg ulcers or venous ulcers
  • Novel treatments for VVs
  • Compression therapy
  • Symptoms caused by pelvic vein incompetence in women


  • Clinical trials in vascular disease and dementia
  • Stroke in young adults
  • Migraine and migraine with aura
  • Cerebral injury in haemodialysis
  • Autologous blood transfusion
  • Blood transfusion strategies in surgery
  • A novel blood transfusion trigger


  • Vascular disease
  • Arterial thrombosis
  • Venous thrombosis
  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Pulmonary embolism (PE)
  • Cardio-pulmonary exercise testing (CPET)
  • Cerebral perfusion
  • Paradoxical embolism
  • Carotid artery disease
  • Ischaemia - reperfusion injury
  • Cerebral emboli
  • Migraine
  • Migraine with aura
  • Venous disease
  • Leg ulceration
  • Autologous blood transfusion
  • Vascular dementia
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Inflammatory responses


I have been involved in both undergraduate and postgraduate education, having been trained in presentation skills, delivering lectures, and on interactive video link teaching including remote television teaching, my role is now that of a trainer. 

My commitment to undergraduate teaching remains a priority and includes one-to-one teaching in the outpatients, team teaching on the wards and formal lectures to undergraduates and postgraduates. We strive to ensure that our trainees become fully involved in all aspects of our clinical practice, audit and research. In vascular surgery we have regular clinical meetings and a postgraduate x-ray meeting with the vascular radiologists and trainees in both surgery and radiology. The academic surgeons of the future need careful support in their approach to surgical training. They need to be identified and introduced to research method at an early stage and to this end, I supervise higher degree research for surgeons, cardiologists and scientists:

I  founded the North West College of Academic Surgery to offer the opportunity of a career in academic surgery to high flying undergraduates and to rejuvenate academic surgery in the North West. I am joined in this venture by all the remaining surgical academics in Manchester and by approaching a dozen NHS colleagues who have demonstrated excellence in research or surgical education.  Manchester achieved 3 academic clinical fellowships and a clinical lecturer in surgery.

My collaborations

  • Professor.Anthony Heagerty, Professor of Medicine and Head of Cardiovascular Sciences Research Group, University of Manchester
  • Dr.Simon Ray, Consultant Cardiologist and Clinical Director, Cardiology Department, Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester
  • Dr.Brendan Davies, Consultant Neurologist, North Staffordshire Neurosciences Centre, Stoke on Trent
  • Dr.Charles Sherrington, Consultant Neurologist, Greater Manchester Neurosciences Centre, Hope Hospital, Manchester
  • Professor. Gary Macfarlane, Professor of Epidemiology, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen
  • Dr.William Newman, Senior Lecturer and Consultant Clinical Genetist, University of Manchester
  • Mrs.Julie Morris, Head of Medical Statistics, Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester
  • Dr.Paul Rolan, Professor of Pharmacology and Honorary Consultant Physician Headache Clinic, University of Adelaide, Australia
  • Prof Alistair Burns (Professor of Psychiatry)
  • Dr Sandip Mitra (Nephrologist Manchester Royal Infirmary)
  • Prof Alan Jackson (Neuroradiology)
  • Dr Ismail Mohammed (Nephrology)
  • Dr Andrew Mortimer, Consultant Anaesthetist, UHSM
  • Dr Oliver Hill, Consultant Anaesthestist, UHSM
  • Mr Peter Kay, Wrightington Hospital
  • Mr Nassar Kurdy, Department of Orthopaedics, UHSM
  • Mr Darren Walter, Emergency Medicine, UHSM
  • Dr Tilak Dias and his team in the School of Materials
  • Dr Linda Davies, Centre for Health Economics
  • Professor David Mitchell, North Bristol NHS Trust
  • Professor Simon Thompson, Public Health & Primary Care, Cambridge
  • Professor Matt Thompson, St George's, London
  • Dr Peter Elton, Director of Public Health, Bury

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

  • Association of Surgeons of Great Britain & Ireland
  • British Medical Association
  • European Society for Vascular and Endovascular Surgery
  • International College of Angiology
  • International Society of Cardiovascular Surgery
  • International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostasis
  • Surgical Infection Society (Charter Member)
  • Surgical Research Society of Great Britain & Ireland
  • Vascular Surgical Society of Great Britain & Ireland
  • Member of UK National Screening Committee, Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms
  • Member, vCJD Committee on Blood Transfusion
  • Member, Working Party on alternatives to blood transfusion for the National Blood Service

Methodological knowledge

  • Complex vascular surgery
  • Multi-centre clinical trials
  • Population studies (cardiovascular epidemiology)
  • Autologous blood transfusion strategies
  • Investigation of cerebral perfusion


  • MB, ChB (Birmingham) 1972
  • FRCS (London) 1976
  • FRCS (Edinburgh) 1976
  • MD (Birmingham) 1981
  • Certificate of Higher Surgical Training 1981

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being


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