Burmese American Medical Association

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Pioneers

Dr. U Tin Oo

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Dr. U Tin Oo
Pioneers in Medicine, Burma #6: Child Health – Prof. U Tin U

"If I have seen further [than other men) it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants."Sir Isaac Newton: Letter to Robert Hooke, February 5, 1675. I thought that the pediatricians of our generation and of our
times would agree with me if I use the quotation of Sir Isaac Newton: "I am able to see further because I am standing on the shoulders of giants." A lot of us would not have achieved what we did if we had not been "standing on the shoulders of the giant of child health" Saya U Tin U. It was his vision, mission and ambition for the children of Burma, which paved the roads that we had walked and lighted the paths that we had taken.
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Dr. U Tha Saing

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Dr. U Tha Saing
Pioneers in Medicine, Burma #3: Leprosy – Dr. U Tha Saing

In our Final Part 1, we had to go to the Skin and VD Clinic in Old RGH. Part of the teaching was done on the Leprosy Clinic headed by Saya U Tha Saing. Recently, I watched the movie about Mother Theresa, and while watching the movie, my mind was going back to my memories of Burma's first leprologist.Unlike writing about other teachers, there is very little I know of the personal life of Dr. Tha Saing except for his very brilliant son, Dr. Pe Khin.

Yet, at the Leprosy Clinic, while most of the people would shirk from coming near, let alone touch and treat them, Saya would be in the midst of a number of patients with severe forms of leprosy. Many with the nose, the ears, the fingers rotting away. Saya would be seen gently removing the homemade bandages of the stumps of the hands and feet of the lepers, and advising his nurses on how to clean and dress them. Yet, Sayagyi could be very tough on anyone who would not extend respect and kindness to leprosy patients. Many a Part 1 student was asked to leave because the student either by facial expression or body language committed these "crimes" (in Saya's eyes).
Last Updated ( Friday, 15 May 2009 10:11 ) Read more...
 

Dr. U Khin Maung Win

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Dr. U Khin Maung Win
Pioneers in Medicine, Burma #2: Pathology - Prof. U Khin Maung Win


Prof. Khin Maung Win, MBBS (Cal), MRCP (Edin) Pathology, FRCP (Edin), and FRCPath. Saya was the first Burmese consultant pathologist. Before Saya were very excellent pathologists from India. During the British times, many Indian doctors were brought in on "contract to Burma and many stayed back after the war. There were many Civil Surgeons (equivalent toTownship Medical Officer 1 at present). One of them Dr. Natarajan became very famous in Moulmein. Old Dr. Natrajan's son, Victor Natarajan became a surgeon. If I remember correctly, Victor must be Ko Anthony's classmate. I would like to inform the young doctors that so much good work was done by the pathology dept. (which at that times includedmicrobiology). The disease Melloidosis was discovered at post-mortem in RGH. In the history of medicine, the organism was called by the name of the Indian pathologist from RGH but the name was changed to Pseudomonas pseudomallei and then to Bulholderia pseudomalleii. Just as I have, many had forgotten the name of the "Burmese" pathologist who discovered this organism, which mimicked tuberculosis.
Last Updated ( Friday, 15 May 2009 10:11 ) Read more...
 

Dr. U Chan Taik

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Dr. U Chan Taik
Pioneers in Medicine, Burma #4: Ophthalmology – Dr. Chan Taik

Dr. Chan Taik, MBBS (Cal), DO, DOMS, DPH, DTM&H – was one of the most senior ophthalmologists. Coming from a well-to-do family from Moulmein, both Saya and Mrs. Chan Taik were very generous and were involved in social welfare work in many areas. At a time when preventive and public health ophthalmology was not in vogue, Saya took diplomas in public health as well as in tropical medicine.

Saya (Uncle Chan Taik to my family) had published articles on common eye diseases and prevention of some of them in the Burma Medical Journal, the precursor of the Myanmar Medical Journal. He provided free treatment and free surgery at the
Muslim Free Hospital, as well as at his private clinic cum residence in Windermere Road.Dr. Chan Taik's own son (Dr. Edmund Chan Taik) became an ophthalmic surgeon currently practicing in USA.
Last Updated ( Friday, 15 May 2009 10:11 ) Read more...
 

Dr. U Ba Than

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Dr. U Ba Than
Pioneers in Medicine, Burma #1: Prof. U Ba Than

Sayagyi U Ba Than, MBBS (Calcutta), FRCS (Edin), FRCS (Glas), FICS, was Rector of the Institute of Medicine I, Yangon, and formerly, Dean of the faculty of Medicine, Mandalay. During that time, we have only Judson College and Rangoon College. Only after finishing the two years in college(Intermediate Science I. Sc. A & B, one could enter med. school. This was true up to our times. I think we were the last batch who entered Yankin College and then competed for med. school.)

Saya Dr. U Myint Swe wrote a book called, "Mhat Mi Ba Thae Di, Gyapan Khit Yangon Sae Yone Gyi Wae" ("I remember the Rangoon General Hospital during the Japanese Occupation." Everyone of us who read the book by Saya U Myint Swe would be reading about Saya U Ba Than, who refused to be evacuated when the Japanese Army came in 1942. He stayed throughout the occupation for three years, risking both his life and his reputation (he was accused of being a Japanese collaborator; this was found to be untrue and Saya's reputation remained as unblemished as it was before). Saya never was a collaborator but he stayed on as a true patriot and a real "thamar". Saya's staying behind resulted in the Burmese having continuing access to care during these difficult times. I hope someone will translate this into English or at least publish the book again.

When the Mandalay faculty of Medicine was opened, Saya was requested to be the Dean of the new faculty of medicine. When the faculty of Medicine, University of Rangoon, became the Institute of Medicine 1, Saya became the Rector of our Institute.
Last Updated ( Friday, 15 May 2009 10:12 ) Read more...
 
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