Name of practice
Instituto H. Ellis and Hospital Ipiranga
Location of practice
São Paulo, Brazil
I graduated from Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São Paulo (Medical School of University of São Paulo) in 1977. My residency in urology was done at Hospital das Clínicas in São Paulo from 1978 to 1983. I did a fellowship in male infertility at the Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio, USA in 1983. I got my PhD at University of São Paulo in São Paulo, Brazil in 1991.
I have been working at Instituto H. Ellis since its founding in 1984. In 1991 I was nominated Head of the Urology Department of the Hospital Ipiranga. Recently I joined the School of Medicine of ABC as an investigator.
How long have you been a member of the ISSM?
Why did you join the ISSM?
I began to work with erectile dysfunction in 1981 during my residency in urology. In 1984 we (with my partner Pedro Puech Leão) created the Instituto H. Ellis, a multidsciplinary institution dedicated to male sexual dysfunction. It was the first one in Brazil. In 1984 we read about the Paris meeting on impotence and decided to go to Prague in 1986 to attend the next meeting of the International Society of Impotence Research-ISIR, the former name of ISSM. At the meeting we met many of the worldwide-known researchers in the area: Vaclav Michal, Herbert Newman, Adrian Zorgniotti, Gorm Wagner, Ronald Virag, and the "new kids on the block” Tom Lue, Irwin Goldstein and Eric Wespes. We became fascinated by the friendship and the possibility of idea exchange we found in ISIR, so we decided to join the society.
How does the ISSM benefit you?
ISSM grew a lot and became a very mature society. The main benefit is the JSM, but I still care for the international meetings. Those are unique features of ISSM. It is a great benefit to learn about the research in every part of the world, meet people, and exchange ideas. Since the Prague meeting, I have not missed a single ISSM meeting.
What led you to begin practicing in the field of sexual medicine?
I began during my residency, mainly because the Head of the Department asked me to research impotence in men who had been submitted to kidney transplant. He chose me because I was the resident at the transplant unit. When I started to study, I discovered a new field. We are talking about the early eighties; we barely had the penile implants as the main treatment for erectile dysfunction. At that time, the first papers had been published on the physiology of the erection and on the possibility of vascular surgeries to treat ED. In my country, very few people were dedicated to the field. It was a great and fascinating opportunity.
What are the special challenges in working in your region of the world?
Brazil is a developing country which has been economically growing in the last 15 years. Our economy has been stable for more than 20 years. This situation improved our working conditions. The main challenge still is to do research. It is not very easy to get institutional funds for research in sexual medicine.
My story at ISSM is a success story. I joined the society in 1986. In 1990 I was co-chairman (with Pedro Puech Leão) of the IV World Meeting on Impotence, the name of the ISIR meeting in Rio de Janeiro. In 1992 I was elected for the first time as Member-at-Large for the Executive Committee of ISIR, at that time ISSIR, International Society for Sexual and Impotence Research. In 1998 I was elected President-Elect of ISSM. My term as President of ISSM was from 2000 to 2002. During my term (with the combined hard work of my Executive Board: Ira Sharlip - Secretary, Eric Meuleman - Treasurer, Jacques Buvat - President Elect, and Ronald Lewis - Past President) we made an important partnership deal with Bayer, Lilly, and Pfizer, which brings an enormous amount of financial support to ISSM and the regional societies. I believe that deal upgraded the status of our society, giving maturity and strength to its structure. In 2014 I will be co-chairman of the ISSM World Meeting on Sexual Medicine to be held in São Paulo.