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Hooshang Bolooki, MD 1937 – 2008

Monday, October 26, 2009

On the morning after his death, Dr. Bolooki was probably discussed and fondly remembered at scrub sinks all across the country as his trainees across the USA prepared to operate.  He lives on through all of his students and trainees, and his teaching creates a legacy that will last into the foreseeable future.

Dr. Bolooki was the Director of Adult Cardiac Surgery at The University of Miami for 26 years from 1982 through 2008. He started heart transplantation at The University of Miami and has trained over 50 Cardiothoracic Surgeons.

Dr. Bolooki excelled in many areas:

  1. Professional accomplishments – clinical, research, and teaching
  2. Mentor to medical students, residents and early career cardiothoracic surgeons
  3. Athlete
  4. Father and husband

Professional accomplishments –clinical, research, and teaching

Dr. Bolooki graduated from Alborz College, Iran, in 1954 with a major in Natural Science and Biology.  He graduated from Tehran University School of Medicine in 1961 and completed his General Surgery Residency at Brooklyn Downstate Medical Center and King County Hospital in Brooklyn, New York.

In 1967, Dr. Bolooki came to The University of Miami as a Cardiac Surgery Resident and remained there for over 40 years. He completed his Cardiac Surgery Residency in 1969 and by 1977 was a full Professor of Surgery. In 1982, he became Director of Adult Cardiac Surgery at The University of Miami – Jackson Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Bolooki started the heart transplant program at The University of Miami – Jackson Memorial Hospital and performed the majority of the first 100 heart transplants at this program. He performed the first heart transplant in South Florida in 1986 and later retransplanted this first patient in November 1999.

A brief review of Dr. Bolooki’s 40 page curriculum vitae clearly reflects his important academic accomplishments. He authored 105 peer reviewed publications, 11 book chapters, and 5 books. He made multiple important academic accomplishments, including ground breaking research related to the intra-aortic balloon pump.

Dr. Bolooki received many prestigious awards including the STSA Inspiration Award from the Southern Thoracic Surgery Association and the Lifetime Achievement Award from The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Dr. Bolooki was an active member of many professional medical societies including the American Association for Thoracic Surgery, Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Southern Thoracic Surgical Association, American College of Cardiology, American College of Chest Physicians, Society of University Surgeons, American Heart Association, and American Medical Association. 

Mentor to medical students, residents and early career cardiothoracic surgeons

Dr. Bolooki provided his trainees with an extremely high level of mentorship and inspiration. In 2007, at the annual Black Tie Dinner of The Southern Thoracic Surgical Association, Dr. Bolooki was honored for his teaching and mentorship when he was awarded the Inspiration Award of the Southern Thoracic Surgical Association (STSA), which is “given to the STSA member who has demonstrated exceptional efforts in motivating, inspiring and cultivating the clinical and research talents of medical students, residents and/or early career CT surgeons.”


Dr. Bolooki approached every aspect of his life with passion and determination. Sports were always a very important part of Dr. Bolooki’s life. His passion for snow skiing was matched only by his love for tennis. He was an active STSA participant for decades, organizing the annual tennis tournament and presenting the tennis awards at the annual Black Tie Dinner.

Father and husband

In the midst of all of his professional accomplishments, Dr. Bolooki was most proud of his family. Nothing was more important to him than his wife of 33 years, Joanne, and their three sons Michael (Nicole), Cyrus, and Andrew.

Indeed, Dr. Bolooki was a model cardiac surgeon, husband, father, teacher, and mentor.

Jeffrey P. Jacobs, MD
The Congenital Heart Institute of Florida
University of South Florida
Saint Petersburg, FL USA

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