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MAKERS Moment

The First Women Surgeons

The First Women Surgeons

More From Dr. Susan

In this video

In a time with almost no women surgeons, Love overcame terrible prejudice to pursue the specialty.

Dr. Susan 's Biography

Cause of Choice: Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation and National Breast Cancer Coalition
Three Words to Describe Herself: Iconoclastic, persistent, and optimistic
Early Career Ambitions: A good Catholic girl, she joined the convent midway through college, but gave it up after nine months.
Advice for Younger Generations: "Don't wait to be invited. Figure out what needs to be fixed and fix it."

Educated in Puerto Rico, Mexico City, New York and Boston, Susan Love was already a pioneer when, in 1980, she became the first female General Surgeon on the staff of Boston’s Beth Israel Hospital. She was determined not to become a breast surgeon. But, she would later remember, "I started to realize how women weren't getting information. If they came in with a lump or what they thought was a lump, the doctor would say, 'Don't worry your little head about that, dear.'”
 
Now more than thirty years on, Love has drastically altered the equations surrounding the disease. She founded the Faulkner Breast Center in Boston and the Revlon UCLA Breast Center in Los Angeles and remains a Clinical Professor of Surgery at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. And as president of the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation, she oversees an active $4 million dollar research program centered on breast cancer cause and prevention. But her impact is perhaps greatest where it is widest: as a trusted guide to women worldwide. 1990’s Dr. Susan Love’s Breast Book (“the bible for women with breast cancer” according to The New York Times) is now in its fifth edition and her Love/Avon Army of Women partners women and scientists in order to accelerate basic translational research. It all insures that Dr. Love’s fierce intellect and her famous bedside manner continue to save lives worldwide. 

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