Document Detail

Emergence and early development of Russian neurosurgery (1890s-1930s).
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17365558     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
This paper is a case study of specialization in clinical medicine - it is a story of the difficult and complicated birth of a neurosurgery clinic in Russia and the Soviet Union. It demonstrates the futile attempt to institute a new specialty as surgical neurology advocated by neuro(patho)logist V.M. Bekhterev (1857-1927) and implemented by his pupils L.M. Pussep (1875-1942) and A.G. Molotkov (1874-1950). However, surgical neurology was gradually replaced by neurological surgery performed by general surgeons N.N. Burdenko (1875-1946), A.L. Polenov (1871-1947), and V.N. Shamov (1882-1962). Part of my paper is dedicated to the institutional history (emergence of the Institute of Surgical Neurology in Leningrad (in 1926) and the Central Institute of Neurosurgery in Moscow (in 1934). The Moscow Neurosurgical School was focused on lesions of the central nervous system whereas the Leningrad neurosurgical school dealt primarily with peripheral nerve surgery. In the 1930s neurosurgical clinics were established beyond the two capitals - in Rostov-on-Don, Kharkov, and Gorky. Similar to the centralized five-year planning in the Soviet economy, a new discipline of neurosurgery was also centralized and planned from Moscow in the 1930s. It was characterized by kompleksnost' - concentration of several auxiliary disciplines (neuroradiology, neuroophthalmology, neurophysiology, etc.) within neurosurgical research institutions in Leningrad and Moscow. Particular stress was made on the experimental nature of a new discipline, which was viewed as a sort of applied neurophysiology.
Boleslav Lichterman
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Historical Article; Journal Article; Portraits    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of the history of the neurosciences     Volume:  16     ISSN:  0964-704X     ISO Abbreviation:  J Hist Neurosci     Publication Date:    2007 Jan-Jun
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-03-16     Completed Date:  2007-05-30     Revised Date:  2009-11-19    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9441330     Medline TA:  J Hist Neurosci     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  123-37     Citation Subset:  IM; Q    
Centre for the History of Medicine, Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, Moscow, Russia.
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MeSH Terms
History of Medicine*
History, 19th Century
History, 20th Century
Hospitals, Special / history*
Neurosurgery / history*

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