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The King of Hearts, Sir Magdi Yacoub

One of the most renowned cardiac surgeons in the entire globe is Magdi Yacoub. He was born in Egypt and knew from an early age that he wanted to help others as a doctor. After attending Cairo University to study medicine, he relocated to the United Kingdom. During his time working in hospitals in the UK, he made the majority of his breakthroughs and groundbreaking work in the field of cardiac surgery. He is well renowned for his contributions to transplant immunology, cardiac regeneration, and tissue engineering.

Along with being a highly regarded cardiac surgeon, he also served as a lecturer at London's famed Imperial College, passing on his knowledge to the next generation of medical professionals. In addition, he has co-authored multiple books and more than 1,000 articles on the cardiac surgery methods he has created. To assist children in war-torn and developing nations receiving urgent cardiac care, he also started a children's charity named "Chain of Hope."


Childhood and early life:

On November 16, 1935, Magdi Yacoub was born in Belbis, Alshraqya, Egypt. His father, a general surgeon, fostered his desire to become a doctor. He saw his aunt die of heart disease when he was four years old. He decided to focus on heart surgery when she passed away in her early 20s. At the age of 15, he enrolled on a full scholarship at Cairo University College of Medicine, where he eventually earned his medical degree in 1957.



He relocated to London in 1962, where he spent the following 40 years working in prestigious cardiac surgery hospitals. He is praised as one of the most revered cardiac surgeons in the world and is regarded as a pioneer in his area.


He took a brief vacation in 1968 to teach in America. Then, at the University of Chicago, he served as an associate professor for an entire year. A year later, he returned to London to continue working in the UK.


He started working as a Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon at Harefield Hospital after returning to the UK. He held this position from 1969 to 2001.


He was a Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon at Royal Brompton Hospital in 1986 while still employed at Harefield Hospital. He was named a professor of cardiothoracic surgery at the National Heart & Lung Institute that same year.


Over 60 research students under his guidance completed their dissertations in the fields of tissue engineering, myocardial regeneration, stem cell biology, end-stage heart failure, and transplant immunology during his career.


He established the UK-based children's charity Chain of Hope in 1995 to help children from war-torn and underdeveloped nations with heart abnormalities that can be treated. Additionally, Chain of Hope has created research and training initiatives in Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries.


In 2001, Magdi left his position as a hospital employee in the London area and now devotes his time to finding medical professionals for the UK's National Health Services. He has also invested a lot of time in his nonprofit organization, Chain of Hope.


Major works:

He invented techniques such as tissue-engineered heart valves, cutting-edge left ventricular support devices, and wireless sensors for heart patients. As a result, he is one of the top cardiac surgeons in the world. He also created a method to swap the cardiac arteries in infants with congenital heart abnormalities.


He founded the Magdi Yacoub Heart Foundation in 2008. The Aswan Heart Centre was established by the foundation in 2009 to offer free healthcare to individuals in need.


In 2008, he established the Magdi Yacoub Research Network in addition to his cardiac charity. Together with the Qatar Foundation and Hamad Medical Corporation, the network assisted in establishing the Qatar Cardiovascular Research Center.


More than 2,500 transplant procedures have been carried out thanks to the largest heart and lung transplant program he founded.


He carried out Nigeria's first open heart operation in 1974.


Derrick Morris, who holds the record for the longest heart transplant patient survival, received a transplant from him in 1980. After the surgery, he lived for 25 years.


Awards and achievements:


In 1992, Queen Elizabeth II knighted Dr. Yacoub in recognition of his contributions to surgery and medicine.


For his efforts and innovative methods, he received the Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 1998. In addition, he received the Ray C. Fish Award for Scientific Achievement in Cardiovascular Disease from the Texas Heart Institute in the same year.


The Royal Society gave him a second Fellowship Award in 1999. In addition, he received a Lifetime Outstanding Achievement Award from the UK Secretary of State in 1999 in honor of his service to medicine.


Other honors include the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Society for Heart & Lung Transplantation, the Medal of Merit from the International Academy of Cardiovascular Sciences, and the WHO Prize for Humanitarian Services (Geneva).



If we talk about Sir Magdi Yacoub as an example to follow in diligence, steadfastness, perseverance, and faith, we will not fulfill his right. Certainly, Magdi Yacoub is a story of struggle and success that is taught, and no doubt many people will follow his trail. All of the achievements mentioned here are far less than the truth because this man's deeds for humanity are countless. But I cannot lose sight of this doctor being an example to be emulated in society. We may find many success stories throughout the ages that we can learn from and trace their impact, but we will not see every day a natural person to this extent. Magdi Yacoub is a living example of humility and mercy, and conclusive evidence is that the more your knowledge and achievements increase the more your humility and humanity increase.


Let's end with his famous quote: “Serving humanity is religion”.

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