René Favaloro: famous heart surgeon – the savior of the heart


If you go today on the Google home page, you will see a special logo. Instead of the well-known colorful letters, the user is waiting for the pictograms of a human heart and a slightly gray man in surgical attire. Only a few will recognize this man or even know his name. René Favaloro has been behind one of the most important breakthroughs in modern medicine.

On May 9, 1967, he succeeded in Cleveland, Ohio, the first successful surgical bypass in the heart of a 51-year-old patient. But for himself, the Argentine did not want to save this milestone. "The" we "is more important than the" me ", in medicine, a breakthrough is always the result of the previous steps," said Google on July 12. René Favaloro would have been 96 years old today – and the search engine dedicated him a doodle for the event.

The idea behind the bypass: new smooth-walled veins are used as bypass routes – term: "bypass" – used to fill the dangerous bottlenecks in the blood supply to the heart muscle.

The operation requires considerable know-how. The new veins, cut portions of the veins of the patient's leg or part of his internal thoracic artery, are sutured to the coronary arteries and their branches, which are only one to two millimeters in diameter. Surgeons work with magnifying glasses and the best suture material.

After the successful operation in Cleveland, Favaloro became famous around the world and then returned to his native country, Argentina, where he continued to work as a cardiac surgeon. Throughout his career, he has saved the lives of many – Favaloro himself has come to a tragic end. After the founding of the foundation, he found himself in serious financial difficulty. The famous doctor shot himself in the head in Buenos Aires in 2000.