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Moments in Surgical History
July 1, 2007

A Tribute to a Nuclear Surgeon

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Departments of Surgery, Center for Cancer Care at Goshen Health System, Goshen, Indiana (Dr Gulec), and Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans (Dr O[[rsquo]]Leary).

Arch Surg. 2007;142(7):683-684. doi:10.1001/archsurg.142.7.683

Surgery is more a matter of mental grasp than it is of handicraftsmanship. William J. Mayo1

On October 21, 1993, the New York Times reported the death of one of the most beautiful minds in surgery:

Dr Irving M. Ariel, a surgeon, medical educator, and specialist in radiation therapy for cancer, died on Saturday at his home in Manhattan. He was 82. The family said the cause was heart failure. Dr Ariel was associated with Beth Israel Hospital North in Manhattan. More than 240 of his papers were published in medical journals. Dr Ariel was a clinical professor of surgery at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He used new techniques with isotopes in treating thyroid disease and the diagnosis of pulmonary embolisms.

Dr Ariel received his medical degree from the State University of Iowa in 1936. He was a fellow of the American College of Surgeons, founding president of the Society of Nuclear Medicine, and a fellow of the American Academy of Medicine and the New York Academy of Sciences. He is survived by his wife, Ingegaerd; a son, Robert, of Manhattan; a stepson, Mark Angerer, of Germany; and a sister, Lillian Malzman, of Hawaii.”2

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