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Stunted
01-31-2009, 02:19 AM
Does anyone know anything about/know of any good resources regarding heart surgery through history? Basically, I'd be interested in anything before 1900. Thank you.

TerzaRima
01-31-2009, 03:21 AM
I doubt that cardiac surgery existed prior to the 20th century.

ColoradoGuy
01-31-2009, 03:25 AM
I doubt that cardiac surgery existed prior to the 20th century.
Bingo. Closed (i.e., sticking a finger into the heart) repair of valve stenosis was done in the 1940s, but true cardiac surgery didn't begin until the invention of the heart-lung machine in the 1950s.

Kitty Pryde
01-31-2009, 03:32 AM
Nooooo! Wikipedia to the rescue!


The first successful surgery on the heart itself, performed without any complications, was by Dr. Ludwig Rehn of Frankfurt, Germany, who repaired a stab wound to the right ventricle on September 7, 1896.

Surgery on great vessels (aortic coarctation repair, Blalock-Taussig shunt creation, closure of patent ductus arteriosus), became common after the turn of the century and falls in the domain of cardiac surgery, but technically cannot be considered heart surgery.

[edit] Heart Malformations – Early Approaches

In 1925 operations on the valves of the heart were unknown. Henry Souttar operated successfully on a young woman with mitral stenosis. He made an opening in the appendage of the left atrium and inserted a finger into this chamber in order to palpate and explore the damaged mitral valve. The patient survived for several years[2] but Souttar’s physician colleagues at that time decided the procedure was not justified and he could not continue[3][4].

After the War things were different. In 1948 four surgeons carried out successful operations for mitral stenosis resulting from rheumatic fever. Horace Smithy (1914-1948) of Charlotte, revived an operation due to Dr Elliott Cutler of the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital using a punch to remove a portion of the mitral valve. Charles Bailey (1910-1993) at the Hahnemann Hospital, Philadelphia, Dwight Harken in Boston and Russell Brock at Guy’s Hospital all adopted Souttar’s method.. All these men started work independently of each other, within a few months. This time Souttar’s technique was widely adopted although there were modifications[3][4].

In 1947 Thomas Holmes Sellors (1902-1987) of the Middlesex Hospital operated on a Fallot’s Tetralogy patient with pulmonary stenosis and successfully divided the stenosed pulmonary valve. In 1948, Russell Brock, probably unaware of Sellor’s work, used a specially designed dilator in three cases of pulmonary stenosis. Later in 1948 he designed a punch to resect the infundibular muscle stenosis which is often associated with Fallot’s Tetralogy. Many thousands of these “blind” operations were performed until the introduction of heart bypass made direct surgery on valves possible[3].

Open heart surgery began in the 50s.

ColoradoGuy
01-31-2009, 03:42 AM
All of which is essentially what I said. The surgeries listed in the late 1940s in the Wiki article were for stenosis of the mitral valve, then common. Open heart surgery -- what we regard as heart surgery proper -- began in the 1950s with the invention of the heart lung machine. The previous examples listed, such as for patent ductus arteriosis -- were for things in the great vessels outside the heart. Nearby it, but outside it.

Kitty Pryde
01-31-2009, 03:46 AM
I don't get any points for 'repairing a stab wound to the right ventricle' in 1896?

ColoradoGuy
01-31-2009, 03:50 AM
I don't get any points for 'repairing a stab wound to the right ventricle' in 1896?
No. Just as I give my father no points for sticking his finger into some guy's right ventricle in 1944 in a tent by lamplight and fishing out blindly a bit of shrapnel. If he hadn't tried it the guy would have died. Under those circumstances we try new and risky things.

TerzaRima
01-31-2009, 07:25 AM
Just as I give my father no points for sticking his finger into some guy's right ventricle in 1944 in a tent by lamplight and fishing out blindly a bit of shrapnel. If he hadn't tried it the guy would have died.

Dude. Who was your dad, Indiana Jones? I give my dad points for fixing my Barbie Dream House with duct tape and WD-40.

ColoradoGuy
01-31-2009, 09:46 AM
Dude. Who was your dad, Indiana Jones? I give my dad points for fixing my Barbie Dream House with duct tape and WD-40.
Army surgeon in WW II (and then Korea). Then he'd had enough of that and went into peds. Interesting guy.

VeggieChick
01-31-2009, 11:09 AM
Army surgeon in WW II (and then Korea). Then he'd had enough of that and went into peds. Interesting guy.

Man, that is REALLY impressive.

emc07
01-31-2009, 11:33 AM
No. Just as I give my father no points for sticking his finger into some guy's right ventricle in 1944 in a tent by lamplight and fishing out blindly a bit of shrapnel. If he hadn't tried it the guy would have died. Under those circumstances we try new and risky things.

Wow. That's amazing. Lucky guy to have your dad there.

Stunted
01-31-2009, 03:20 PM
No. Just as I give my father no points for sticking his finger into some guy's right ventricle in 1944 in a tent by lamplight and fishing out blindly a bit of shrapnel. If he hadn't tried it the guy would have died. Under those circumstances we try new and risky things.

Jesus!

Thanks everyone.