Dr René Favaloro, a pioneering Argentinian cardiac surgeon associated with his contributions to coronary artery bypass surgery, is being remembered with a special Google Doodle on what might have been his 96th birthday celebration.
Who is René Favaloro?
“‘We’ is more important than ‘I.’ In medicine, the advances are always the result of many efforts accumulated over the years,” wrote Dr. René Favaloro, a pioneering Argentinian surgeon who introduced coronary artery bypass surgery into clinical practice.
René Favaloro, a Buenos Aires native, is credited with bringing coronary bypass surgery into the clinical field – however he was reluctant to be known as the “father” of such a technique.
Born in La Plata on 12 July,1923, René Favaloro graduated in 1948 from La Plata University with a medical degree.
He started his career as a nation doctor in the territory of La Pampa, where during 12 years he “educated his patients about preventive medicine, established the first ‘mobile’ blood bank in this area, and built his own operating room, where he trained general and surgical nurses,” per a tribute written by Dr Denton A Cooley following René Favaloro’s demise in 2000.
René Favaloro joined the Cleveland Clinic in 1962 and pursued his interest for thoracic surgery.
In May 1967, René Favaloro worked on a 51-year-old woman with an occlusion on her correct coronary artery. He performed a saphenous aortocoronary bypass, which means he utilized a vein from the woman’s leg to re-route the blood flow around the blockage.
“Although he was always hesitant to carry the moniker of ‘father’ of coronary artery bypass surgery, he is the surgeon we should credit with introducing coronary bypass surgery into the clinical arena,” Cooley wrote of René Favaloro in his tribute.
René Favaloro came back to Argentina during the 1970s and made the Favaloro Foundation, a scientific institution dedicated to medicinal care, training and research.
René Favaloro passed on by suicide on 29 July, 2000. His demise set off a national debate on the impacts of Argentina’s late-Nineties recession, as well as the state of healthcare and scientific research in the nation.