Medical History Highlights of the Midwest

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We love the fact that we’re located in the Midwest. West Michigan is currently a hub for medical innovation, and our surrounding region has been a leading force for medical strides for over a century. While we’re focused on creating the healthcare of the future today, it’s important to remember the advances that got us to where we are now.

Here are some of our favorite historical medical innovations of the Midwest.

Internal Medical Innovations

The Midwest has been a center of innovation for surgical procedures and medicine. In fact, the first kidney, pancreas, and bone marrow transplants were performed in Minnesota in 1966-1968 and the first intestinal biopsy was performed in Michigan in 1962.

Medical innovation doesn’t stop with procedures. In 1990, the University of Michigan was named as one of only four institutions in the United States that was designated as a Human Genome Research Center during efforts to map the human genetic blueprint.

Heart Medicine in the Heartlands

The Midwest has been a hotspot for heart medicine over the years, spanning as far back as the 1800s. In fact, Dr. Daniel Hale Williams performed the first successful open-heart surgery on the pericardium in Chicago in 1893. The patient was a man who had suffered from a knife wound earned in a bar brawl.

Speaking of firsts, a Michigan doctor, Dr. Alexis Carrel, performed the first-ever heart transplant in 1904. Although the patient in question was a dog, Dr. Carrel paved the road for further heart transplants. He even received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1912 for his work.

This tradition of heart firsts was continued in 1952, when Dr. C. Walton Lillehei and Dr. F. John Lewis performed the first intracardial correction of a congenital heart defect. This procedure was performed on a five-year-old girl and completed using cross-circulation at the University of Minnesota.

Dr. Lillehei would go on to develop many other medical innovations, including the blood pump (1955), the implantable pacemaker (1957), and the prosthetic heart valve (1966).

The Healthcare of the Future

At MediSurge, we’re proud to be contributing to the ever-growing field of medicine. We know that patient care comes above all else. That’s why we strive to constantly innovate in ways that will make the experience for patients and medical professionals easier, more effective, and more pleasant.

Do you have a device that could change the face of medical history? What about a solution to an everyday problem? Connect with our team. We can help you with design, manufacturing, and more.


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