Famed Heart Surgeon Hits Restrictions by Government
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THE SHREVEPORT JOURNAL, SHREVEPORT-BOSSIER CITY, LA., FRIDAY, FEB. 11, 1972 OUT IN FRONT — The U.S. is at least 10 years ahead of the Soviet Union in heart research and surgical technique according to Dr. Denton A. Cooley (right) who recently visited Moscow. Dr. Cooley, chief surgeon at the Texas Heart Insti-tute, talks with Dr. Marion Hargrove (left), head of the Department of Medi-cine at the LSU M e d i c a l School in Shreveport, before a d d r e s s i n g the Northwest Louisiana Heart Assn. kick-off dinner here T h u r s d a y . (Journal Photo by Manuel Chavez) Famed Heart Surgeon Hits Restrictions by Government By CARL LIBERTO Journal Staff Writer Dr. Denton A. Cooley, chief surgeon at the Texas Heart Institute, warned that federal regulations on artificial de-vices could "not only seriously retard and cripple progress, but would deny many deserv-ing patients the help they desperately need today." The famed Houston heart surgeon spoke to about 300 persons attending the Louisia-na Heart Association, North-west Unit, k i c k o f f dinner Thursday at the Petroleum Club. Many in the audience have been operated on by Dr. Cooley. DR. COOLEY continued his attack on unreasonable con-trols, s a y i n g , "Government controls carried to an unrea-sonable extreme could stifle progress, discourage investi-gators and lead to a slow death of medical and surgical advancement." "Cardiac surgeons are now under constant threat that all a r t i f i c i a l devices will be placed under the direction and control of the food and drug bureau," Dr. Cooley said. He cited as an example of restrictions stifling surgical advances in the U.S. the fact that French surgeons were the first to implant an atomic-powered p a c e m a k e r in a patient. HE SAID the French sur-geon who performed the im-plant had been trained in the U.S. and the atomic-powered pacemaker was designed and made by an American firm. He said, "Because govern-ment controls would not per-mit a clinical application, the atomic-powered pacemaker made in the United States was first used in a patient in France." Dr. Cooley has performed more heart transplants than any other surgeon and was the first to utilize an artifical device to keep a patient alive for three days while awaiting a donor for a transplant. HE WAS formerly with the Baylor School of Medicine in Houston before helping found the Texas Heart Institute in Houston. Dr. Cooley said he visited Moscow recently and reported the Russians are at least 10 years behind the U.S. in heart research. He also noted that the Red Chinese are even farther behind in that area. He said restrictions on sur-geons and individuals in those countries has stifled research in heart disease and surgical technique. CITING THE fact that heart II disease is America's number one killer, Dr. Cooley said, "Thousands of lives will be saved or p r o l o n g e d when hearts too damaged to keep patients alive can be removed and replaced by mechanical substitutes." N o t i n g that donors are scarce and difficult to obtain, he said. "A clinically usable artificial heart would dispense with the problem of finding enough donors, m a t c h i n g them for tissue compatibility with the recipient, and provid-i n g effective treatment to prevent rejection." Dr. Cooley said the human heart is not an easy organ to duplicate. "It will be expected to pump continuously for up to 50 years without a breakdown. It must be strong enough to circulate the body's five to six quarts of blood through 60,000 miles of arteries and veins and, in a lifetime, move a total of 65 million gallons of liquid." DR. COOLEY said that, while we must be patient in waiting for teart research breakthroughs. "There comes a time when all new tech-niques and devices must be taken from the animal labora-tory to the hospital operating room. "If clinical trial of open heart surgery, artificial heart valves, pacemakers and coro-nary bypasses had waited until all investigators were satisfied that thorough labora-tory applications had been made, we would have none of those advances today." "New techniques must be tested in the laboratory. But when they have reached a state where clinical applica-tion seems justified, let's not keep them in the laboratory. They cannot save human lives if they stay in the laboratory. Let's be more liberal, more courageous in using them to attempt saving the lives of dying patients," he urged. BEFORE DR. Cooley's ad-dress. Mandel C. Selber, Jr., Caddo H e a r t Fund chairman, said the Northwest Unit of the state heart asso-ciation 1972 goal is $53,000. He said that 75 per cent of the funds collected in the local area stay in the local area to support local heart fund pro-jects including three heart research grants at LSU Medi-cal School in Shreveport. The Northwest Unit of the Louisiana H e a r t Assn. in-cludes Caddo, Bossier, DeSoto and Webster paristes.
|Title||Famed Heart Surgeon Hits Restrictions by Government|
Cooley, Denton A.
Louisiana Heart Association, Northwest Unit
Hargrove, Marion D., Jr.
|Identifier||See reference URL on the navigation bar.|
|Source||Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Shreveport Medical Library (http://lib.sh.lsuhsc.edu)|
|Coverage-Spatial||Shreveport (Caddo, La.)|
|Rights||Physical rights are retained by Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Shreveport. Copyright is retained in accordance with U.S. copyright laws.|
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