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The History of Tulane Ophthalmology
Dr. Matas' Eye


Dr. Rudolph Matas

Dr. Rudolph Matas remains, even today, one of Tulane's most famous faculty members. He was considered one of the leading cardiovascular surgeons in the United States. His introduction of the suture for the cure of aneurysm won him international fame and caused Sir William Osler to hail him as the "Father of Vascular Surgery." Unfortunately, Dr. Matas accidentally inoculated his own eye with material from a gonococcal tuboovarian abscess. Dr. Marcus Feingold undertook the care of Dr. Matas, and, over the next three months, deferred his private practice and lived in the Matas home.

Night and day, Dr. Feingold and the attendant nurses irrigated Dr. Matas' eye and instilled argyrol. Eventually, a corneal ulcer developed and perforated. Dr. Feingold had to enucleate Dr. Matas' eye.

Next Page: Dr. Wiley Ross Buffington


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