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Alton Ochsner, MD (1896‐1981): Surgical Pioneer and Legacy Linking Smoking and Disease

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Edward William Alton Ochsner kept a plain, metal card file in which he recorded close to 50 years worth of medical experiences, research, and insights. The most populated topics were filed as “Cancer, Lung” and “Cancer, Bronchogenic.” These reflected his areas of greatest interest, for which he would go on to produce groundbreaking work. Of his many lifetime accomplishments, he is perhaps best known for being the first to report a link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer. This was just one of the many ways in which Ochsner worked to effect social change. The establishment of the Ochsner Health System in New Orleans was born from this similar passion. Ochsner went on to become one of the giants of his generation as a result of this tireless work as a leader, educator, and mentor.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2015

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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