At the time this portrait was done, Dr. DeBakey was working on several cardiac assist devices as well as a total artificial heart, and also exploring the possibilities and limitations of heart transplants. See, for example, "Human Cardiac Transplantation," "Orthotopic Cardiac Prosthesis: Preliminary Experiments," and "Current Directions in the Artificial Heart Program." His total artificial heart prototype (slightly modified) had just been implanted in a human patient by Dr. Denton Cooley without DeBakey's knowledge or permission, an event that destroyed their professional relationship. The creator of this photo, Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002) was an Armenian-Canadian photographer renowned for his distinctive, revealing portraits. His subjects include many of the twentieth century's political and scientific leaders, along with other celebrities.
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