Now that Dr. George Muscillo has closed the doors of his medical practice after more than 46 years, many will remember him as the man who delivered their child, or for that matter, themselves into this world.
Though he bid farewell to his obstetrics practice in 1990, Muscillo continued his gynecologist practice from an office in the house his father built at 1072 Esplanade. His former longtime partner was Dr. Robert Dyson, who is also his brother-in-law.
“When I first started at the practice many people wanted to see my father, who was also an obstetrician,” Muscillo said of early years. “I had followed in my father’s footsteps. They soon realized that I had a lot of experience, too.”
Muscillo honed his medical skills during a surgical internship at Jacobi Hospital in 1959, followed by further training at Metropolitan Hospital and Flower Fifth Avenue Hospital, which is no longer in operation.
He attended Christopher Columbus High School, Columbia University, and New York Medical College. While in military service he worked as a gynecologist and obstetrician at an army hospital as a lieutenant colonial from 1967 to 1969.
He most fondly recalls delivering thousands of babies at Westchester Square Medical Center, Parkchester Private Hospital, and the Albert Einstein Hospital, now part of Montefiore.
He recalled the early days of his practice as a more innocent time when it came to medicine.
“It was very different then,” Muscillo said. “All of the doctors volunteered their time at city hospitals. There was no problem treating uninsured people. Medicine was very simple.”
He said that he and his wife seldom left home when he first started his practice.
“There weren’t any cell phones at the time, so we couldn’t go out much,” Dr. Muscillo’s wife, Sandra Muscillo, said. “When we did, we constantly had people coming up to us and saying ‘you delivered my baby’ or ‘you delivered me.’ One time, we were at a doctor’s dinner and there was a wedding going on next door. As we were leaving the mother of the bride brought her daughter over in her wedding gown and said to the doctor: ‘you did this.’”
The doctor fondly recalls watching the children he delivered go on to have families of their own.
Muscillo will close his practice on July 31.