Trueta, Joseph

Trueta, Joseph
SUBJECT AREA: Medical technology
b. 28 October 1897 Barcelona, Spain
d. 19 January 1977 Barcelona, Spain
Spanish surgeon who specialized in the treatment of trauma and invented the "Trueta" technique of wound management.
Trueta studied medicine at Barcelona University and graduated in 1921. He held successive surgical appointments until in 1929 he was appointed to the Caja de Provision y Socorro, an organization handling 40,000 cases of injury per year. In 1935, soon after becoming Chief Surgeon in Catalonia, he was confronted by the special problems presented by the casualties of the Spanish Civil War.
With a Nationalist victory imminent in 1939, he moved to England where his special skills were recognized, and at the outbreak of the Second World War he was appointed to the Wing-field Hospital and the Radcliffe Infirmary at Oxford. After an interregnum at the end of the war, in 1949 he was appointed Nuffield Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Oxford, and held this post until his retirement in 1965, when he was able to return to Spain.
His technique of wound management stressed the importance of wound cleansing, excision of non-viable tissue, drainage and immobilization, and was particularly timely in that the advent of penicillin permitted the practical pursuit of new concepts in the treatment not only of the soft tissues, but also of bone infection. He was engaged in many other research projects, in particular those concerned with "crush syndrome" and its renal implications.
1939, Treatment of Wounds and Fractures with special reference to the closed method, London.
1943, The Principles and Practice of War Surgery with special reference to the Biological Method of Treatment of Wounds and Fractures, London.
1980, Trueta: Surgeon in War and Peace, trans. M.Strubell and M.Strubell, London (autobiography).

Biographical history of technology. - Taylor & Francis e-Librar. . 2005.

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