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Mary E Child MacGregor and her mentorship of Dr. Pickett: paving the way for women in Urology
Zita Ficko, MD, MS, Elias S. Hyams, MD.
DHMC, Lebanon, NH, USA.

BACKGROUND: The first female American Urologist was Dr. Mary E. Childs MacGregor. At a time when American society had not fully accepted women into advanced professions, Dr. MacGregor persevered and paved the way for women in Urology.
METHODS: Historical and contemporary articles highlighting the role of women in Urology, and a biographical article written about Dr. MacGregor by Dr. Elisabeth Pickett (1958) were examined.
RESULTS: Dr. MacGregor trained in urology at the New York Infirmary in 1928. She ultimately went on to found the urology service and became the first Chair of Urology at the same institution. She later contributed to opening fellowships to women in Urology, such as Dr. Pickett, whom she greatly influenced. Dr. Pickett trained as a general surgery resident at the New York Infirmary from 1946 until 1948, and later became the first board certified female Urologist in 1962. Given the increasing numbers of women in medicine, in 1954 the AUA approved opening of membership to women, but it took 21 more years until the first female was elected to AUA membership (Mary Louise Gannon in 1975).
Recent studies show that the proportion of women in urology has increased from less than 0.5% in 1981 to 10%, and 33% of students matching in urology are now female.
CONCLUSIONS:
As the numbers of female urologists and women in leadership positions in the field are increasing, reflection on the origins of women in urology is needed. Dr. MacGregor merits recognition for her legacy in introducing women to the field of Urology.


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