Prof. Dr. Rubens de Guimarães Santos: flawless surgeon
Prof. Dr. Rubens de Guimarães Santos: cirurgião impecável
Luiz Antonio Rivetti
Prof. M.D. Full Member of SBCCV
Luiz Antônio Rivetti was born in São Paulo, the capital of the São Paulo State, in 1925. He attended the medical course at Paulista School of Medicine. He graduated in 1952 when he In 1962 with the establishment of the Faculty of Medical Sciences of Santa Casa de São Paulo (Holy House of Mercy of São Paulo), he went along with Prof. Felipozzi to the newly founded Academic Institution, where he created a workshop to develop polypropylene mechanical heart valves, Hufnagel type, disposable bubble oxygenators, and steel permanent oxygenators. was assisting Professor Palumbo, a worldwide renowned obstetrician.
However, since 1950, when he was still a student, he followed Professor Hugo Felipozzi. Professor Felipozzi besides being a general surgeon, has already devoted himself to research for the development of Cardiac Surgery at the Institute Sabbado D'Angelo, a branch of the Anita Pastore D'Angelo Foundation, an institution which was engaged in development of Cardiology, underdeveloped worldwide yet.
In 1954, he definitely gave up Obstetrics to devote himself entirely to the development of Cardiopulmonary Bypass, which had been created in the United States of America by Gibbon the year before. At the Institute of Cardiology Sabbado D'Angelo, he was already a tireless worker being responsible for hundreds of experimental surgeries in dogs for the development of the heart-lung machine.
In 1955, led by Hugo Felipozzi, he participates in the first surgery with extracorporeal circulation in Latin America at the Santa Rita Hospital, in Sao Paulo, operating a child with pulmonary stenosis.
He has always been a dedicated, detail-oriented, precise, perspicacious, skilled, creative, accurate, fast, and demanding surgeon.
Enthusiastic about the details of the surgery, he lived within the operating room, always searching ways to improve the techniques, materials, and the training of the personnel involved.
In 1962 with the establishment of the Faculty of Medical Sciences of Santa Casa de São Paulo (Holy House of Mercy of São Paulo), he went along with Prof. Felipozzi to the newly founded Academic Institution, where he created a workshop to develop polypropylene mechanical heart valves, Hufnagel type, disposable bubble oxygenators, and stainless steel oxygenators of permanent use.
Rubens with his perseverance could develop all these materials in a country with its own industry still incipient.
In 1977, he did his Associate Professorship Thesis on "Replacing the aortic or mitral valve by Lillehei-Kaster prosthesis" (¨Substituição da valva Aórtica ou Mitral por prótese de Lillehei-Kaster¨) at the same faculty with great magnificence.
The thesis analyzes 29 patients undergoing replacement of their valves in a 21-month follow-up with anticoagulant, only in the first three months, with excellent results.
Rivetti has always shown an utmost dedication in teaching surgical technique to his numerous residents, among whom I count myself proudly.
He had a contagious humor, but an even greater rigor.
On May 10th 2011, the Brazilian Cardiac Surgery lost a tireless fighter and stainless surgeon after all. He operated on until the age of 80. He left a wife, five children, nine grandchildren, and hundreds of heartfelt colleagues and former residents.
However, his technical and scientific contribution in these 60 years of heart surgery leaves him alive to the posterity.