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Encyclopedia > Alfred Blalock
Alfred Blalock

Alfred Blalock circa 1944
Born April 5, 1899
Flag of the United States, Culloden, Georgia,
United States
Died September 15, 1964 (aged 65)
Profession Surgeon
Institutions Vanderbilt University Hospital
Research blue baby syndrome, shock
Education University of Georgia
Johns Hopkins Medical School

Alfred Blalock (April 5, 1899September 15, 1964) was a 20th-century American innovator in the field of medical science most noted for his research on the medical condition of shock and the development of the Blalock-Taussig Shunt, surgical relief of the cyanosis from Tetralogy of Fallot—known commonly as the blue baby syndrome—with his assistant Vivien Thomas and pediatric cardiologist Helen Taussig. Image File history File links Karsh1. ... is the 95th day of the year (96th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1899 (MDCCCXCIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday [1] of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Culloden is a city located in Monroe County, Georgia. ... is the 258th day of the year (259th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also Nintendo emulator: 1964 (emulator). ... This article is about the medical specialty. ... The Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) is a collection of several hospitals and clinics associated with Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. ... A cyanotic newborn, or blue baby Blue baby syndrome (or simply, blue baby) is a laymans term used to describe newborns with cyanotic conditions, such as: Cyanotic heart defects Tetralogy of Fallot Dextro-Transposition of the great arteries Hypoplastic left heart syndrome Methemoglobinemia On November 29, 1944, the Johns... This article is about the medical condition. ... UGA Main Library The University of Georgia (UGA) is the largest institution of higher learning in the U.S. state of Georgia. ... The Johns Hopkins University is an internationally prestigious private institution of higher learning located in Baltimore, Maryland. ... is the 95th day of the year (96th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1899 (MDCCCXCIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday [1] of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... is the 258th day of the year (259th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also Nintendo emulator: 1964 (emulator). ... See drugs, medication, and pharmacology for substances that are used to treat patients. ... This article is about the medical condition. ... The Blalock-Taussig shunt is a surgical procedure to give palliation to cyanotic heart defects which are common causes of blue baby syndrome. ... The tetralogy of Fallot is a congenital heart defect which classically has four anatomical components. ... A cyanotic newborn, or blue baby Blue baby syndrome (or simply, blue baby) is a laymans term used to describe newborns with cyanotic conditions, such as: Cyanotic heart defects Tetralogy of Fallot Dextro-Transposition of the great arteries Hypoplastic left heart syndrome Methemoglobinemia On November 29, 1944, the Johns... Vivien Theodore Thomas Vivien Thomas autobiography, Partners of the Heart: Vivien Thomas and His Work With Alfred Blalock Vivien Theodore Thomas (August 29, 1910 – November 26, 1985) was an African-American surgical technician who helped develop the procedures used to treat blue baby syndrome in the 1940s. ... Pediatrics (also spelled paediatrics or pædiatrics) is the branch of medicine that deals with the medical care of infants and children. ... ... Helen B. Taussig, (1898 - 1986) was an american cardiologist, working in Baltimore and Boston, who created the Blalock-Taussig shunt Categories: History of medicine ...

Contents

Birth and early career

Born in Culloden, Georgia, Blalock entered Georgia Military Academy, a preparatory school for the University of Georgia, at the age of 14. Having graduated from the University of Georgia with an A.B. in 1918 at the age of 19, Blalock subsequently entered Johns Hopkins Medical School, where he roomed with, became tennis doubles partner to, and began a lifetime friendship with Tinsley Harrison. Blalock earned his medical degree at Johns Hopkins in 1922. Hoping to gain appointment to a surgical residency at Johns Hopkins due to his admiration of William S. Halsted, Blalock remained in Baltimore over the next three years, completing an internship in urology, one year of an assistant residency on the general surgical service (his contract was not renewed), and an externship in ENT. He moved to Boston, Massachusetts, in the summer of 1925 to begin a surgical residency at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital but left for Vanderbilt "without ever unpacking [his] trunk." Culloden is a city located in Monroe County, Georgia. ... Woodward Academy is a private day school located in College Park, Georgia, USA. // Woodward Academy was founded in 1900 as the Georgia Military Academy, a military boarding school for boys. ... UGA Main Library The University of Georgia (UGA) is the largest institution of higher learning in the U.S. state of Georgia. ... A B.A. issued from the University of Tennessee. ... The Johns Hopkins University is an internationally prestigious private institution of higher learning located in Baltimore, Maryland. ... Tinsley Randolph Harrison Tinsley Randolph Harrison (March 18, 1900 – August 4, 1978) was a US physician and editor of the first five editions of Harrisons Principles of Internal Medicine. ... The Four Doctors by John Singer Sargent, 1905. ... Baltimore redirects here. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... Boston redirects here. ... The Peter Bent Brigham Hospital was established in Boston in 1913. ...


Vanderbilt University

In July 1925, Blalock joined his good friend Harrison at Vanderbilt University in Nashville to serve as first chief resident in surgery under Barney Brooks, who was Vanderbilt University Hospital's first Professor of Surgery and Chief of the Surgical Service. Blalock was active in teaching third- and fourth-year medical students and, as a result, was placed in charge of the surgical research laboratory. While at Vanderbilt University he worked on the nature and treatment of hemorrhagic and traumatic shock. Experimenting on dogs, he found that surgical shock resulted from the loss of blood, and he encouraged the use of blood plasma or whole blood products as treatment following the onset of shock. This research resulted in the saving of many lives during World War II. Unfortunately, Blalock met with frequent bouts of tuberculosis during his Vanderbilt years. His first paper on shock, published in 1927, was actually written by his friend Harrison based on the data that Blalock had completed but could not compile due to his illness. While at Vanderbilt in 1938, Blalock attempted to produce pulmonary hypertension in experiments joining the left subclavian artery to the left pulmonary artery. Although these experiments failed in their purpose, he returned to this idea years later.He did great. Vanderbilt redirects here. ... Nashville redirects here. ... Courtesy of Special Collections, Eskind Biomedical Library, Vanderbilt University Barney Brooks (b. ... The Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) is a collection of several hospitals and clinics associated with Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. ... Blood plasma is the liquid component of blood, in which the blood cells are suspended. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... Tuberculosis (abbreviated as TB for tubercle bacillus or Tuberculosis) is a common and deadly infectious disease caused by mycobacteria, mainly Mycobacterium tuberculosis. ... In medicine, pulmonary hypertension (PH) is an increase in blood pressure in the pulmonary artery, pulmonary vein, or pulmonary capillaries, together known as the lung vasculature, leading to shortness of breath, dizziness, fainting, and other symptoms, all of which are exacerbated by exertion. ... The subclavian artery is a major artery of the upper thorax that mainly supplies blood to the head and arms. ... The pulmonary arteries carry blood from the heart to the lungs. ...


Johns Hopkins

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, they developed a shunt technique to bypass aortic coarctation. While they were working on this, Helen Taussig presented him with the problem of the blue baby syndrome. The Dome of the Johns Hopkins Hospital as seen from Broadway. ... Vivien Theodore Thomas Vivien Thomas autobiography, Partners of the Heart: Vivien Thomas and His Work With Alfred Blalock Vivien Theodore Thomas (August 29, 1910 – November 26, 1985) was an African-American surgical technician who helped develop the procedures used to treat blue baby syndrome in the 1940s. ... The aorta (generally pronounced [eɪˈɔːtə] or ay-orta) is the largest artery in the human body, originating from the left ventricle of the heart and bringing oxygenated blood to all parts of the body in the systemic circulation. ... Aortic coarctation is narrowing of the aorta in the area where the ductus arteriosus (ligamentum arteriosum after regression) inserts. ... Helen B(roke). ...


Blue baby

Diagram showing normal blood circulation (above) and the blood circulation on a heart suffering from ToF
Diagram showing normal blood circulation (above) and the blood circulation on a heart suffering from ToF

In the normal heart, there are four separate chambers; the two top chambers are known as atria and pump blood simultaneously into the two bottom chambers, or ventricles. Blood first enters the heart at the right atrium, which then empties blood into the right ventricle, which pumps the blood into the lungs through the pulmonary artery to get oxygen. From the lungs, the blood enters the left atrium through the pulmonary vein; the left atrium empties into the left ventricle, which pumps the blood into the aorta and from there reaches the rest of the body. Because it is responsible for getting blood to the entire body through the aorta, the left ventricle is usually the biggest and strongest chamber of the heart. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... The heart and lungs, from an older edition of Grays Anatomy. ... In the heart, a ventricle is a heart chamber which collects blood from an atrium (another heart chamber that is smaller than a ventricle) and pumps it out of the heart. ...


The following is a depiction of normal blood flow through the body. Valves keep the blood from flowing backwards. Capital letters indicate blood that has been oxygenated:



 veins → superior or inferior vena cava → right atrium ——tricuspid valve→ right ventricle ——pulmonary valve→ pulmonary artery → LUNGS → PULMONARY VEIN → LEFT ATRIUM ——mitral valve→ LEFT VENTRICLE ——aortic valve→ AORTA → ARTERIES 

After the body uses up the oxygen delivered by the blood flowing through the arteries, then arterioles, then capillaries, the unoxygenated blood returns to the heart by the capillaries, then venules, then veins. The tricuspid valve is on the right side of the heart, between the right atrium and the right ventricle. ... The pulmonary valve, also known as pulmonic valve, is the semilunar valve of the heart that lies between the right ventricle and the pulmonary artery and has three cusps. ... The mitral valve (also known as the bicuspid valve or left atrioventricular valve), is a dual flap (bi = 2) valve in the heart that lies between the left atrium (LA) and the left ventricle (LV). ... The aortic valve is one of the valves of the heart. ... Section of an artery An artery or arterial is also a class of highway. ... An arteriole is a blood vessel that extends and branchs out from an artery and leads to capillaries. ... The word capillary is used to describe any very narrow tube or channel through which a fluid can pass. ... A venule is a small blood vessel that allows deoxygenated blood to return from the capillary beds to the larger blood vessels called veins. ... In biology, a vein is a blood vessel which carries blood toward the heart. ...


The blue baby syndrome, known as Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF), consists of an incomplete wall between the ventricles (known as a ventricular septal defect or VSD), an aorta that sits over this defect so that its blood comes from both ventricles instead of just from the left (overriding aorta), a defective right ventricular outflow tract near the pulmonary valve that prevents full flow of blood to the lungs, and a muscular right ventricle necessary to accomplish the extra work required to overcome that defect (right ventricular hypertrophy). The tetralogy of Fallot is a congenital heart defect which classically has four anatomical components. ... A ventricular septal defect (or VSD) is a defect in the ventricular septum (the wall dividing the left and right ventricles of the heart). ... An overriding aorta is a congenital heart defect where the aorta is positioned directly over a ventricular septal defect, instead of over the left ventricle. ... The pulmonary valve, also known as pulmonic valve, is the semilunar valve of the heart that lies between the right ventricle and the pulmonary artery and has three cusps. ... Right ventricular hypertrophy (RVH) is a form of ventricular hypertrophy affecting the right ventricle. ...


The following is a depiction of blood flow in Tetralogy of Fallot. Mixed capital letters indicate partially oxygenated blood.

 veins → superior or inferior vena cava → right atrium ——tricuspid valve→ rIgHt vEnTrIcLe ——VSD→ LeFt VeNtRiClE or __ ——pulmonary valve→ pulmonary artery → LUNGS → PULMONARY VEIN → LEFT ATRIUM ——mitral valve→ LeFt VeNtRiClE <—————————————————————————————————————————rIgHt vEnTrIcLe __ ——aortic valve→ aOrTa → aRtErIeS 

Unoxygenated blood from the right ventricle flows into the aorta preferentially because of the obstructed outflow tract into the lungs. This means less blood has the opportunity to be oxygenated in the lungs. Blood mixes abnormally between the left and right ventricles and into the aorta. Oxygen gives blood its reddish color. Cyanosis describes the "blueness" in the baby and results from the pumping of mixed oxygenated and unoxygenated blood throughout the body. Cyanosis refers to the bluish coloration of the skin due to the presence of deoxygenated hemoglobin in blood vessels near the skin surface. ...


Blalock developed the idea for the operation from his aforementioned failed experiments on dogs. The shunt joins the left subclavian artery (normally oxygenated but partially oxygenated in TOF) to the left pulmonary artery (normally unoxygenated but with very little blood flow in TOF). This increases the amount of blood that goes into the lungs and is returned to the left side of the heart. As a result, more oxygenated blood is pumped to the rest of the body. Vivien Thomas perfected the surgical technique in the laboratory and instructed Blalock during the procedure. The first Blalock-Taussig shunt operation was performed on November 29, 1944, on Eileen Saxon and instantly restored her to a healthy "pink" color. Even though this surgery only prolonged Eileen's life for two months, it was pioneering pediatric heart surgery. is the 333rd day of the year (334th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Eileen Saxon was an infant known as The Blue Baby, because of a condition called blue baby syndrome caused by lack of oxygen in the blood. ...


Film

In the 2004 HBO docudrama Something the Lord Made about the Blalock-Thomas collaboration, Blalock was portrayed by Alan Rickman and Thomas by Mos Def. The year 2004 in film involved some significant events. ... For other uses, see HBO (disambiguation). ... // Docudramas tend to demonstrate some or most of the following characteristics: A strict focus on the facts of the event being treated, as they are known; A tendency to avoid overt commentary or authorial editorializing; The use of literary and narrative techniques to flesh out or render story-like the... SOMETHING THE LORD MADE is a moving story of men who defy the rules and start a medical revolution. ... Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman (born February 21, 1946) is an acclaimed, award-winning English film, television and stage actor. ... Dante Terrell Smith (born December 11, 1973), better known by his stage name Mos Def, is an American rapper and actor. ...


External links

References

  • Thomas, Vivien T., Partners of the Heart: Vivien Thomas and His Work With Alfred Blalock,(originally published as Pioneering Research in Surgical Shock and Cardiovascular Surgery: Vivien Thomas and His Work with Alfred Blalock), University of Pennsylvania Press, 1985. ISBN 0-8122-1634-2.
  • McCabe, Katie, "Like Something the Lord Made" Washingtonian magazine, August 1989. Reprinted in Feature Writing for Newspapers and Magazines: the Pursuit of Excellence, ed. by Jay Friedlander and John Lee. May also be accessed by going to the web site for the HBO film Something the Lord Made, www.hbo.com/films/stlm.
  • Merrill WH, "What's Past is Prologue", Ann Thorac Surg 1999; 68:2366-75.
The Washingtonian is a monthly magazine distrubuted in the Washington DC area. ... SOMETHING THE LORD MADE is a moving story of men who defy the rules and start a medical revolution. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Alfred Blalock - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (661 words)
Alfred Blalock (April 5, 1899 – September 15, 1964) was a 20th century innovator in the field of medical science most noted for his research on the medical emergency condition shock and blue baby syndrome.
Blalock was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and awarded numerous honors including the Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur.
Alfred was born on April 15 in 1899.
Vivien Thomas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1148 words)
He was an assistant to Dr. Alfred Blalock at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee and later at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.
Blalock hired Thomas as a janitor in 1930 at age 19.
Blalock and his team operated again on an 11-year-old girl, this time with complete success and the patient was able to leave the hospital three weeks after the surgery.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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