When Blalock was offered Chief of Surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in 1941, he requested that his assistant Vivien Thomas come along with him. They formed a very close relationship that would last more than thirty years.
Together, Blalock and Thomas developed a shunt technique to bypass coarctation of the aorta. While they were working on this, Helen Taussig presented him with the problem of the blue baby syndrome - a congenital heart defect known as Tetralogy of Fallot which results in inadequate oxygenation of the blood.
The shunt and operation they developed not only directly saved thousands of lives, it marked the start of the modern era of cardiac surgery, as it was the first successful surgery on the human heart of the modern medical era.
Short about Alfred Blalock
Alfred Blalock was a 20th-century American surgeon most noted for his research on the medical condition of shock and for the development of the Blalock-Taussig Shunt, a surgical procedure to relieve the cyanosis from Tetralogy of Fallot—known commonly as
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