Felix Pierpont Heald, 82, the founder of the adolescent medicine program at the University of Maryland medical school in Baltimore and an early leader in the study of adolescent medical issues, died Aug. 10 during heart surgery at the University of Maryland Hospital in Baltimore. He lived in Annapolis.
Dr. Heald published books, articles and studies on obesity, nutritional needs, teenage pregnancy, alcohol and drug abuse, sexual abuse and other areas of adolescent health. He also spent decades teaching doctors, nurses and other health professionals about caring for children during puberty.
A Philadelphia native, he graduated from Colorado College in 1943 and the University of Pennsylvania medical school in 1946.
In 1950, he became one of the first trainees at a newly created unit of the Children's Medical Center in Boston. Eight years later, the New England Journal of Medicine published his first article, acknowledging adolescent medicine as a discrete area of interest within the field of pediatrics.
In 1965, he organized one of the nation's first seminars for health professionals dealing with teenagers. He also was a founder and former president of the Society for Adolescent Medicine. He was a co-author of "Medical Care of the Adolescent" (1976), a leading text in the field.
From 1967 to 1970, he was chairman of George Washington University Hospital's pediatrics department, and from 1958 to 1970 he was pediatrician-in-chief at Children's Hospital in Washington.
From 1970 to 1990, he was a professor of pediatrics at the University of Maryland medical school and director of its adolescent medicine division. He then became a professor emeritus.
In 1990, he received the Mead Johnson Achievement Award for Adolescent Medicine.
In retirement, Dr. Heald fished on Chesapeake Bay and served as president of the Annapolis chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association and vice president of the state association.
He told the Capital newspaper of Annapolis a few years ago that he was part of a retirees breakfast club called "the Romeos," for Retired Old Men Eat Out.
His wife of 49 years, Jean Truslow Heald, died in 1997.
Survivors include his wife, Mary Sutton, whom he married in 1998, of Annapolis; five children from his first marriage, Chris Heald of North Bethesda, Deborah Ayers Hougland of College Park, Anne Louise Heald of Falls Church, Jennifer P. Heald of Westport, Mass., and Wendy Stevens of Nashville; two stepchildren, Jonathan Sutton Jr. of Londonderry, Vt., and Parker Sutton of Baltimore; and eight grandchildren.