Marking Medical Milestone In Buffalo

October 5, 2010 Updated Oct 5, 2010 at 9:42 PM EDT

By WKBW Programming

October 5, 2010 Updated Oct 5, 2010 at 9:42 PM EDT

(WKBW) The local healthcare community is marking the 50th anniversary of the world's first successful implantation of the pacemaker, and it happened right here in Buffalo.

Dr. Andrew Gage, who is now 88 years old, collaborated with another University at Buffalo surgeon to perfect the use of the implantable pacemaker. His pioneering work began in 1958, and the pacemaker was ready for human use by 1960.

Dr. Gage remembers Wilson Greatbatch, a former electrical engineering professor at UB asking if there would be any use for a small device that would pace the heart. He recalls immediately saying yes, but it was not clear back then how useful it would be.

Of course, now we know the pacemaker is widely used today by some 3-million people all over the world. Dr. Gage was honored by the City of Buffalo for his outstanding contributions to medical history with the Mayor proclaiming October 5 "Dr. Andrew Gage Day" here in the Queen City.

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