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The Michael E. DeBakey Papers

Letter from Alton Ochsner to Michael E. DeBakey pdf (2,248,100 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Alton Ochsner to Michael E. DeBakey
Alton Ochsner, M.D.
Number of Image Pages:
2 (2,248,100 Bytes)
1936-07-27 (July 27, 1936)
Ochsner, Alton
[DeBakey, Michael E.]
Reproduced with permission of John Ochsner.
Exhibit Category:
From Tulane School of Medicine to the U.S. Army, 1928-1946
Box Number:
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Correspondence, 1921-2007
Folder: Ochsner, Alton, 1935-1942, 1978-1981, 2003
July 27, 1936
Dear Mike,
I want to thank you for your letter of July 2, which we all enjoyed reading.
I know that you are getting a great deal out of Professor Kirschner's Clinic and am happy for you, because it is a real opportunity not only to work with these men, but to learn to know them as you are doing.
I can assure you that we will be very happy when you return to New Orleans, because things are apparently picking up. There is a rumor that the new hospital will be built and in it there will be provision made for three distinct services, the Tulane, the L.S.U., and the independent services. If such goes through, each one will be given complete care of the individual service as far as professional care is concerned. This would mean that we would be able to appoint our own internes and residents and have complete control over the professional staff. I understand, also, that they are going to give us all our own surgical removals and also the autopsy material on the Tulane Service. The only hitch in it as far as pathology is concerned is that the Department of Pathology will have it, and we will not have it in the Department of Surgery. This, however, will be much better than it is now in that the material will be Tulane's, and we will be able to do anything we want with it. We will be able to do anything that we want from the Department of Pathology.
Let me congratulate you on the commission which Professor dos Santos gave you. I think it is perfectly splendid and feel that he has used good judgment in having you translate his book for him.
Mike, I wish you would inquire and see how expensive a Leica camera is in Germany or one comparable to it, that same type. If they are not too expensive, I might have you bring one in, provided it will not fill your quota too much as regards duty. I wouldn't want you to load yourself up with something for me. If you will let me know and if it is all right, I will send the money to you.
I am very much interested in what you had to say about the extradural anesthetic, because we have been using it here only a short time. Charlie Odom went to South America and was greatly impressed by the results which they were getting in one of the clinics there. He has a done a hundred or more here and has published some of the work on it. I, however, have had very much the same impression that you have apparently gotten, namely, that it is not quite as safe as some of the other anesthetics and is much less reliable in that failures are much more likely to occur than in spinals, for instance.
I have decided not to take any real vacation this summer, because there are so many things that I want to do that I do not feel that I can take the time off. Isabel, Akky, and I were gone ten days, a week ago, however. I had to go to Chattanooga to give a couple of papers. We left Sister with the Gillises, some neighbors of ours, and put John and Mims in a camp at the Edgewater Gulf Hotel. We had planned on taking Akky to Chattanooga with us, but when we reached Montgomery, we found that they were having a poliomyelitis scare in the northern part of Alabama so that we left him in Montgomery with our friends, the Watkins. I am certainly glad we did, because the camp where we were planning on leaving him has subsequently had a case of poliomyelitis. You can imagine our uneasiness had we taken him there.
There is going to be a great change of personnel around here next year. George Lilly is leaving, going to Miami to practice. Louis Bristow has already gone back to Anderson, South Carolina, where he was practicing before he came, and Berry Bowman leaves this fall. To fill these vacancies will be you, Dr. Hardy, who graduated here a year ago, and a Doctor Quanstrom, who is a Minnesota graduate. Ray Bannister will remain on for another year.
At the reappointment of the staff at the hospital this year, Howard was reappointed to his old position, and Neal Owens was elevated to the rank of Visiting Surgeon. Ambrose was not reappointed. This, however, will be easily corrected if the plan goes though of having distinct services and giving the individual services complete control over the professional staff.
I am sending letters to Professor Schmieden and to Professor Sauerbruch, so that you may present them when you visit their clinics. I wish you would give them both my kindest regards, and tell Professor Sauerbruch I am looking forward with a great deal of pleasure to seeing him in Philadelphia this fall at the meeting of the American College of Surgeons, because I understand he is to be one of the distinguished foreign guests.
Everyone in the Department joins me in sending best regards,
Sincerely yours,
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