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As part of BWH’s BluePrint celebration, BWH Bulletin features this special section to explore the past, present and future of the institution. Throughout 2013, you’ll find a new fun fact, story, photo or tradition in each issue of Bulletin. You can also find information about BluePrint, including a tool kit, milestones and events, at BWHPikeNotes.org/BluePrint. Questions? Email BWHBluePrint@partners.org.
Past and present members of the BWH
Renal Division gathered earlier this month to acknowledge BWH’s BluePrint celebration and highlight some of the important contributions the division has made to medicine, science and the history of the hospital.
During the two-day celebration, the division hosted talks, round table discussions and a special Grand Rounds on March 1. Presenters spoke about the division’s history and its involvement in the early stages of dialysis and kidney transplantation at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital.
Distinguished guests included Drs. Constantine Hampers, Edmund Lowrie, Ted Hager, J. Michael Lazarus and Richard Glassock, who all played major roles in the development of effective and pervasive end-stage kidney patient care.
Hampers and Hager initiated outpatient dialysis, which has sustained the lives of millions of people over the years. They also co-founded National Medical Care, Inc., which became the world’s largest provider of artificial kidney services.
In addition to the widely-known roles that the Renal Division has played in transplantation and outpatient in-center hemodialysis, the Renal Division also performed the earliest outpatient dialysis treatments in patients’ homes and authored a book describing peritoneal dialysis long before these modes of treatment became popular.
Today, nearly 460,000 people undergo dialysis treatment around the country. The Renal Division continues its work to ensure better health and quality of life for these patients through scientific discovery. In one of the division’s most recent findings, Division Chief Joseph Bonventre, MD, PhD, was able to isolate a biomarker that, for the first time, signals kidney injury. Other research studies in the division are focusing on understanding how kidney injury leads to chronic kidney failure and how to better direct kidney repair.