JM Gilvernet – His Contributions to Urology

Dear All,

We all heard the news of passing away of Prof. Jose Maria Gil-Vernet, at a ripe age of 97 on 5th March 2020.

Today many of the Urologists and Trainees in Urology may not have heard much about this much celebrated Urologist from Barcelona, Spain. His Contributions towards development of Urology was phenomenal that many of us in the elder Generation followed many of his surgical techniques.

EAU Urology History Section Brought out this memoriam in his honour on May 5th 2020.

His contributions towards Urological Surgery were many and he authored innumerable publications that will be difficult to compile.

One of his main contributions was Extended Pyelolithotomy (called as Intrasinosal Surgery) which most of the Urologist Followed. During almost the same period Boyce introduced his Technique of ‘Anatrophic Nephrolithotomy’ which also became popular among many yester Urologists. But the blood loss was significantly more with Boyce’s technique when compared to Gil Vernet’s Extended Pyelolithotomy.

His Publication on ‘Intrasinosal surgery (Extended Pyelolithotomy) is detailed that it covers all aspects on this then popular surgery for Renal Calculi including Staghorn Calculi. For those who love History, this is a treasure.

With the advent of Lap and Robotic Urology, Open techniques receded but This procedure is practiced by these surgeons when contemplating Lap or Robotic procedures. Hence reading this publication will be of immense benefit.

As mentioned, it is impossible to provide a compilation of his work. I am providing Links for some of his Contributions.

New Surgical Approach to Complicated Renal Anomalies

Prostate cancer: anatomical and surgical considerations – This article was published by JM Gil Vernet in honour of his father Salvador Gil Vernet who by himself was well known for his contributions for Urological Anatomy

Gil Vernet had introduced an Anti Reflux Surgery for VUR but it did not become very popular among the various procedures described for Open Correction of VUR. However there are few articles on this technique published even as late as 2018 exemplifying the virtues of this procedure

He has contributed to the Surgery of VVF with his article on ‘New Surgical Approach to Complex VVF’

His article on ‘Ileo-colic Segment in Urological Surgery’ will help us in understanding in Augmentation Cystoplasties.

These are but a few of his contributions. Edison has well said that he has seen more by ‘standing on the shoulders of Giants before him’. This is very apt when we remember Gil Vernet. The Urological Surgeons of Yore and present will miss him forever.

With warm regards,




  • Ravindra Sabnis
    Ravindra Sabnis
    23 Aug 2020 10:05:08 AM

    Phenomenal contribution by Gil Vernet. Some of the above mentioned, I was not aware. But Most who have witnessed open surgery era, will never forget extended pyelolithotomy. That time, surgeon’s delicateness was judged by how well he does sinus dissection to expose calyces. Avoiding bleeding was an art. Exposing all calyces deep inside & remove stones without tearing was the skill. Malleable, copper Gil vernet retractors were useful. Many of present generations will not even be aware such things. But that life. Everything is dynamic. Past things are forgotten but they remain alive in such Memoria. Same thing may happen to ESWL, at one time Christian Chaussy was tipped for Nobel prize. However, I am afraid, few generations down the line, people may forget ESWL. But that life, we have to accept it. It was nice of you to have put Gil Vernet’s contribution on record.

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