Balasubramaniam Ramamurthi

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Ramamurthi Balasubramaniam
Born 30 January 1922
Sirkazhi, Tamil Nadu
Died 13 December 2003(2003-12-13) (aged 81)
Occupation neurosurgeon
Spouse(s) Indira Ramamurthi
Children Vijayaraghavan, Ravi

Ramamurthi Balasubramaniam (30 January 1922 – 13 December 2003) was an Indian neurosurgeon, author, editor, a pioneer in neurosurgery in India and often recognized as the Father of Neurosurgery of India.[1] He set up the Department of Neurosurgery at the Government General Hospital, Chennai in 1950,[2] the Department of Neurosurgery at the Madras Medical College and founded the Institute of Neurology, Madras in the 1970s.[3] He was awarded the Padma Bhushan[4] and the Dhanvantri Award for his contribution to the field of Neurosurgery in India.

Early life and education[edit]

He was born in Sirkazhi. His father Captain T. S. Balasubramaniam was an Assistant Surgeon in the Government Hospital then. His grandfather′s brother was Shri G. Subramania Iyer, one of the founders of the English daily The Hindu. Prof.BRM studied at the ER High School in Trichy. He completed an MS in General Surgery from the Madras Medical College and went on to complete FRCS at Edinburgh in 1947.[5]

Career[edit]

In 1960, Dr. B. Ramamurthi and his team, Drs. V. Balasubramaniam, S. Kalyanaraman and T. S. Kanaka supported by their neurologist counterparts Drs.G.Arjundas and K.Jagannathan, became the earliest team in India to perform Stereotactic surgery procedures.[6]

In the early 1970s, Dr. Ramamurthi built the Institute of Neurology, Madras on the lines of the Montreal Neurological Institute at Canada, with all branches of neurosciences under one roof. He started the Dr. A. Lakshmipathi Neurosurgical Centre at the Voluntary Health Services (VHS) Hospital at Adyar in 1977-1978, named after his father-in-law, Dr. A. Lakshmipathi. VHS Hospital was the brainchild of Dr. K. S. Sanjivi. Prof. B. Ramamurthi served as the Dean of the Hospital and Principal of the Madras Medical College and Honorary Vice Chancellor of the University of Madras during his long and extensive years as a teacher, mentor and guide. He was appointed as the President of the World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies in 1987 and also served as the former President of the National Board of Medical Examinations in India.

Amongst the many units of neurosurgery he helped set up, the National Brain Research Centre (Manesar, near New Delhi), as an apex body for the coordination of brain research in the country, was his dream come true. He also became a Fellow of the National Academy of Medical Sciences in 1962, Fellow of the Academy of Sciences in 1972, Fellow of the Indian National Science Academy in 1981 and Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine of London in 1983. He was the Founder Secretary of the Neurological Society of India.

Personal life[edit]

Married to Dr. Indira Ramamurthi, an obstetrician and gynecologist, Dr. Ramamurthi is survived by his two sons, Vijayaraghavan Ramamurthi, a journalist, and Ravi Ramamurthi, a neurosurgeon. The Ramamurthi Neurosciences Museum in Chennai is named after him.[7] He wrote his autobiography titled "Uphill all the way" ( Tamil translation - "thadaigal pala thandi" ) which was released by the Chief Minister Karunanidhi in Januaary 2000.[8]

References[edit]