About Cardiothoracic Surgery
Training in thoracic surgery at this center began in 1949 under the chairmanship of Dr. H. H. Bradshaw whose primary interest was in that specialty. Steady growth in clinical activities provided a wealth of teaching opportunities for the developing specialty. Succeeding chairmen have included Dr. Richard T. Myers, Dr. Frank R. Johnston, Dr. A. Robert Cordell, Dr. John W. Hammon, Jr., Dr. D. Glenn Pennington, and the present chairman, Dr. Neal D. Kon.
Administratively, the Section of Cardiothoracic Surgery became the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery under Dr. A. Robert Cordell's chairmanship.
The scope of clinical activities with enlarged academic staff has provided extensive training opportunities for the thoracic residents. Open cardiac procedures began in 1958 and have always included pediatric and adult patients.
Laboratory research has flourished throughout the department's history with interest centering upon the effects of perfusion, myocardial preservation, and clinical studies of long-term perfusion sequela in patients. Valve surgery has been a prominent part of the clinical experience with more emphasis in recent years upon tissue valve techniques. The environment thus created has contributed significantly to advancement of the specialty.
Opportunities for clinical teaching and learning with participation in both clinical and basic research studies produce a wealth of experience for trainees and allow graduates to become the "complete" thoracic surgeon.