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Biography of Dr. Benjamin Solomon Carson, Sr

Dr. All in One

Today Dr. Benjamin Solomon Carson, Sr. is known as the surgeon that has completed many separations of conjoined twins. He is also known in the political world since he tried to run for president in 2016. He performed many operations on conjoined twins in order to separate them and yes some did fail and some did succeed. This showed how passionate and ambitious he was since he always tried to keep going. Although he had a rough upbringing he managed to get through it and really did something with his life. He changed medicine for the better.

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Benjamin Solomon Carson, Sr. was born September 18, 1951. He was born to Sonya and Robert Solomon Carson in Detroit, Michigan. When Benjamin was a young boy his parents separated, he and his mother moved from place to place. In high school, he was a violent person. He would go hit people with rocks, bricks, baseball bats, and hammers. There was even one incident where he tried to hit his mother on the head with a hammer. Another incident is when he was in the ninth grade he tried to stab his who had changed the radio station (“Ben Carson”). He did poorly in school until his mother challenged him and his brother with reading and writing assignments in addition to their regular schoolwork this would then lead him to be where he got later on (“Ben Carson | Biography & Facts”).

After high school, Benjamin went to Yale Univesity in and graduated with a bachelor degree in psychology in 1973. When graduating from Yale University he went to the University of Michigan and graduated with a medical degree in 1977. He applied to many different places to start his internship and residency. He applied to John Hopkins University Medical School, in Baltimore, New York. Here he did his internship and his neurosurgery residency. He completed his residency in 1983. Also, he did one year as a senior registrar at the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in Nedlands, Perth, Western Australia (“Ben Carson | Biography & Facts”).

After a year at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, he returned to Johns Hopkins in 1984, where he was appointed the university’s Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery. He specialized in traumatic brain injuries, brain and spinal cord tumors, achondroplasia, neurological and congenital disorders, craniosynostosis, epilepsy, and trigeminal neuralgia. He once said his hand-eye coordination and the three-dimensional ability to see is what made him a gifted surgeon. Dr. Carson found the revival of the hemispherectomy, which is a drastic surgical procedure where part or all of one hemisphere of the brain is removed. He did the procedure in the 1980s and performed it many times. (“Ben Carson”)

Dr. Carson with his scrubs on

On September 4, 1987, Dr. Carson and a huge team of doctors, nurses and support staff would come together for a 22-hour procedure. In the complex parts of the surgery, Dr. Carson had to apply both hypothermic and circulatory arrest. However, the Binder twins did suffer some brain damage and post-operation bleeding, they did both survived the separation. Dr. Carson’s surgery was considered the first medical successful procedure of its kind. (“Ben Carson”: Biography)

Dr. Ben Carson looking at the model of the twin’s heads

In 1944, Dr. Carson did his second separation of conjoined twins. He and his team went to South Africa to look and see if they could separate the Makwaeba twins. At this time the Makwaeba twins were still infants. The operation was unsuccessful, both of the girls died from complications post-operation. Dr. Carson was devastated but vowed to rework his steps because he knew the procedure would eventually be successful. This surgery made him want to be better than he was at that moment. (“Ben Carson”: Biography)

In 1997 Dr. Carson went to Zambia, South Central Africa to separate their third pair of conjoined twins. The Banda twins were also infants, just like the last. This operation was even more difficult since the boys were joined at the tops of their heads and faced the opposite directions. This would be the first time that this type of surgery would have been done. After 28-hours of operation, supported by previously rendered 3-D mapping, both boys survived and neither suffered brain damage. This was a huge accomplishment for Dr. Carson since he proved to himself and to the world that these such surgeries could be done. (“Ben Carson”: Biography)

Dr. Carson explaining the condition of Ladan and Laleh Bijani brain

In 2003, Dr. Ben Carson faced his biggest challenge that he would ever come across,  separating adult conjoined twins. Ladan and Laleh Bijani were 29 years old that literally lived together in every conceivable way. They shared experiences and outlooks, earning law degrees, however, as they got older and developed their own individual goals, they knew no longer live in that situation. At one point they said, “We would rather die than spend another day together.” Dr. Carson and a team of 100 surgeons, specialists and assistants traveled to Singapore in Southeast Asia. On July 6, 2003, They begin a 52-hour operation. They relied on a 3-D imaging technique, it allowed the medical team to see a virtual surgery before the operation. During the procedure, they followed the digital reconstructions of the twins’ brains. Other than their age another factor came into play that made the operation even harder, the brains shared a major vein and had fused together. They completed the surgery on July 8, however, it would soon be revealed that the girls were in deep critical condition. At 2:30 p.m., Ladan died on the operating table and her sister Laleh died a while later. This loss was devastating to all, especially Dr. Carson, he stated the girls’ bravery to pursue the operation had contributed to neurosurgery in ways that would live far beyond them. (“Ben Carson”: Biography)

Dr. Ben Carsons book, Gifted Hands

After his surgical career, he wrote Gifted Hands (1990) which was about his life as a kid and later on as an adult. Think Big (1992) The Big Picture(1999), and Take the Risk (2007) were all on his personal philosophies on learning, success, hard work and religious faith. On May 2014, Carson published No. 1 New York Times bestseller One Nation: What We Can All Do To Save America’s Future which was about they way he viewed the country and how he would make changes. (“Ben Carson”)

Dr. Ben Carson speaking in Des Moines, Iowa

On February 2013, he was criticizing President Barack Obama for positions on taxation and healthcare. For the following month announced that he was officially retiring from his career as a surgeon. On May 4, 2015, he said his official bid for the Republican presidential nomination in Detroit. Dr. Ben Carson’s campaign never caught much fire with voters. On March 2, 2016, announced he would not go forward in his campaign and did not go to the Republican debate on March 3, in Detroit. (“Ben Carson”: Biography)

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Dr. Carson did many great things such as the separation of the Makwaeba twins in 1994. Although it was unsuccessful it still brought much attention to him. Then in 1997, Carson and his team went to Zambia in South Central Africa to separate the Banda twins. This operation was a success. In 2003, Ben Carson faced his biggest challenge which was separating adult conjoined twins, although the operation failed it still brought him many things because he was the first to really try and make a breakthrough in this type of medicine.

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