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Medical Milestones

Barnes-Jewish Hospital Medical Milestones

  • Jewish Hospital of St. Louis opens 1902.

  • Barnes Hospital opens Dec. 7, 1914.

  • First birth at Barnes Hospital, Dec. 9, 1914.

  • First surgery at Barnes Hospital, an appendectomy performed Dec. 12, 1914.

  • Barnes Hospital surgeon Dr. Ernest Sachs is named the first full professor the first full time professor of neurosurgery in the United States.

  • In 1925, Dr. Evarts A. Graham, the "father of thoracic surgery," develops a way to image the gallbladder by x-ray for the first time, paving the way for successful gallbladder surgery.

  • Barnes Hospital treats patients with diabetes with insulin in 1920s, one of the first hospitals in the US to do so.

  • During an encephalitis epidemic in 1933, researchers at Barnes Hospital and Washington University find a virus carried by the Culex mosquito causes the disease. As a result, mosquito population control measures adopted nationwide helped reduce encephalitis outbreaks.

  • In 1933, Dr. Evarts A. Graham performs the first successful lung removal surgery in the world. The patient lives another 30 years.

  • In 1950, Dr. Graham publishes a landmark study showing that almost all victims of lung cancer have been smokers.

  • In the early 1950s, Barnes Hospital become the first in the country to paint the walls green – thought to be more soothing and easier on the eyes than the traditional bright white.

  • In 1963, Barnes Hospital becomes only the third hospital in the country to use the heart-lung bypass machine during open-heart surgery.

  • In the early 1970s, the first positron emission tomography (PET) scanner is developed at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology and housed in the Barnes Hospital cardiac care unit, where it is used to determine the extent of patients' heart damage.

  • In 1972, Barnes Hospital becomes one of only five hospitals in the US performing bone marrow transplants.

  • In 1975, Barnes Hospital becomes only the second center in the US to have a whole-body EMI scanner.

  • In the 1980s, Jewish becomes the first hospital in the country to treat tumors at or near the skin surface using a combination of hypothermia and radiation treatments.

  • In the 1980s, Dr. Paul E. Lacey and Dr. David M. Scharp did pioneering work isolating and transplanting islet of Langerhans cells to treat diabetes.

  • In the 1980's, Dr. James Cox and Dr. Michael E. Cain perfect electrical mapping of the heart and develop the Cox-Maze procedure, the gold standard in the discipline, to treat heart arrhythmias.

  • In 1985, Jewish Hospital begins the first successful in vitro fertilization program in the state of Missouri.

  • In 1988, Dr. Joel D. Cooper, first person to successfully transplant a human lung, becomes head of the Barnes Hospital lung transplant program. The program quickly becomes the largest lung transplant center in the world.

  • In 1990, Dr. Ralph Clayman, Dr. Lou Kawoussi and Dr. Nathaniel Soper perform the world's first laparoscopic nephrectomy, removing a kidney through minimally-invasive methods.

  • In 1992, Dr. Alec Patterson and Dr. Joel Cooper develop sequential bilateral lung transplant, the gold standard procedure for double lung transplant.

  • In 1993, Dr. Susan McKinnon performed the world's first successful nerve transplant on a 12-year-old boy.

  • In 1994, Jewish Hospital is the first to successfully use a transtelephonic defibrillator, which restores normal heart rhythm using a simple telephone connection.

  • In 1996, Barnes Hospital merges with The Jewish Hospital of St. Louis, becoming Barnes-Jewish Hospital.

  • In 1996, Dr. Todd K. Howard, Dr. Jeffrey Lowell and Dr. Surendra Shenoy perform the first unrelated adult living liver donor transplant in the United States, on an Illinois man who receives part of the liver of his ex-brother-in-law.

  • In 1999, Dr. Surendra Shenoy and Dr. Martin Jendrisak develop mini-nephrectomy, a procedure to remove donor kidneys for transplant from live donors through a single two-inch incision.

  • In 1999, Alvin J. Siteman donates more than $16 million dollars to establish The Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine.

  • In 2000, the Siteman Center earns a National Cancer Institute cancer center designation.

  • In 2002, Dr. John McDonald's work with actor Christopher Reeve, helping Reeve to regain some function and feeling years after a paralyzing accident, receives worldwide attention.

  • In 2003, Dr. Randal Paniello restores 25-year-old Amy Hancock's voice, that had been lost to cancer, by constructing a new larynx out of tissue taken from her arm. It is the first time the surgery has been performed successfully in the U.S.

  • In 2005, the first U.S. surgery to relocate a salivary gland to restore moisture to a tear duct was performed at Barnes-Jewish Hospital by Washington University head and neck surgeon Randal Paniello, MD. This groundbreaking surgery may help save the eyesight of future patients suffering from this disorder.

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General Information: 314.747.3000
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St. Louis, MO 63110
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