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From the Rush Archives: Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month

by Nathalie Wheaton on 2020-07-07T08:00:00-05:00 in History | 0 Comments

July is National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness & Prevention Month!

-Post contributed by Rush Archives Work Study Student Kirsten Petrarca, Doctoral Student in Audiology, Rush University.

Rush has long been involved in the treatment of congenital craniofacial anomalies. In November of 1973, this mission was supported by a visit from Paul Tessier, MD, a world-renowned plastic surgeon who is considered the father of modern craniofacial surgery.

Tessier and Curtin examine x-rays, 1973CAPTION: Internationally renowned surgeon, Paul Tessier, MD, (left) discusses pre-operative skull x-rays with John Curtin, MD, chairman of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Rush.

Tessier developed his surgical techniques for patients with congenital craniofacial anomalies from those for patients with injuries sustained in automobile accidents. During his visit to Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center*, Tessier performed nine surgeries alongside John Curtin, MD, chairman of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Rush. Tessier also visited RPSLMC in 1972, at which time his surgeries were recorded for future training of plastic and reconstructive surgery residents.

From “New Life Through Facial Surgery,” NewsRounds**, December 1973, page 9:

Dr. Curtin served as chairman of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Rush for almost 25 years, retiring in 1989. In honor of his years of research, careful attention to patients, and his mission of educating other surgeons, The John W. Curtin, MD, Chair of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Rush was established by grateful patients, friends, student and colleagues.

Learn more about the current Rush Craniofacial Center here:

*Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center changed its name to Rush University Medical Center in 2003.

**From the Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center newsletter, NewsRounds, December 1973, page 9, NewsRounds Collection, #4719, Rush University Medical Center Archives, Chicago, Ill.

To learn more about the history of Rush or the Rush Archives collections, please visit our website or contact the archivist, Nathalie Wheaton, MSLS.

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