AUA Summit - Postscript: Emil A. Tanagho (1929 – 2024)

Postscripts: Emil A. Tanagho (1929 – 2024)

Emil A. Tanagho (1929 – 2024)

Dr. Tanagho was born in Tahta, Egypt on August 12, 1929. He received his medical degree from the University of Alexandria in January 1952 and did his internship and urology residency training there. He came to the University of California, San Francisco, as a research urologist from February 1963 to August 1964, and then returned to the University of Alexandria as an Assistant Professor. Discouraged with the political climate in Egypt at that time, he managed to emigrate with his family to the United States in August 1966. He was appointed to the full-time faculty at the University of California, San Francisco as Assistant Professor of Urology in 1967, Associate Professor in 1970, and Professor in 1972. In 1976, he became Acting Chair of the Division of Urology and Chairman of the Department, making their Urology Resident Program one of the best in the county.  In his “Legends in Urology” article for the Canadian Journal of Urology, Dr. Tanagho wrote:

Our success can be attributed to three factors:

1) insisting upon departmental status; 2) recruiting excellent faculty (one cannot fail with colleagues such as Jack McAninch, Tom Lue, Marshall Stoller, Richard Williams, Barry Kogan, and Peter Carroll, under whose current Chairmanship the department has reached new levels of renown); and 3) actively welcoming international scholars.

The UCSF Department of Urology has a comprehensive website on their history including The Tanagho Years, which highlights his many accomplishments in urology and at UCSF with reminiscences from Dr. Marshall Stoller:

In later years, Dr. Tanagho's research focused on controlling micturition by electrical stimulation of the spinal cord or sacral roots. Neural stimulation has been tested in clinical studies for the FDA in many centers in the states as well as overseas and is now widely used. This work resulted in eight issued U.S. patents.

The American Urological Association recognized Dr. Tanagho in 1996 with the Certificate of Achievement for contributions to education and research and in 2000 with the prestigious Ramon Guiteras Award for his pioneering efforts in neurourology. His innovative ideas in basic research have contributed significantly toward the understanding of urologic disease and advances in patient care. 

Dr. Tanagho received the New York Academy of Medicine’s Ferdinand C. Valentine Award in 1997 as well as the Societe Internationale d’Urologie’s Yamanouchi Award. In 2006, he received the Keyes Medal from the American Association of Genitourinary Surgeons.  He held honorary memberships in the Urologic Society of Czechoslovakia, the Egyptian Urologic Society, Urologic Society of Australasia, All Union Association of Urology, USSR, German Urological Association, and the Urologic Society of Japan.

Dr. Tanagho published more than 300 original articles in peer-reviewed journals and over 120 chapters in urologic texts. He has been the author and editor of seven books and co-editor (with Jack McAninch) of Smith's General Urology since 1988.