History of Medicine


An Open Access Journal

The contribution of Professor of Medicine V.M. Bronner in the fight against sexually transmitted diseases in the Transbaikal region in the 1920s

DOI: 10.17720/2409-5834.v4.1.2017.02b

Sergey D. Batoev
FSAEI HE I.M. Sechenov First MSMU MOH Russia (Sechenov University)

Professor of Medicine V.M. Bronner made a signifi cant contribution to the development of Soviet health care. One of his fi elds of work was social venereology. V.M. Bronner paid special attention to the fi ght against sexually transmitted diseases, training venereologists and dermatologists and developing the scientifi c fi elds of venereology and dermatology. In the creation of the State Venereological Institute, emphasis was placed on the systematic implementation of social-hygienic and economic measures aimed at the eradication of socially signifi cant diseases. With Bronner’s direct participation, a science-based system of clinical examination for such patients was developed. Venereal diseases were widespread in the Transbaikal region in the prerevolutionary period, due to geopolitical, socio-economic and socio-cultural peculiarities in the development of the region. At that time, systematic work to combat sexually transmitted diseases was not carried out for various reasons, and the situation, in particular with respect to the incidence of syphilis, continued to deteriorate. With the creation of Soviet health care came plans to conduct measures aimed at the prevention and treatment of social diseases across the country. Particular attention was paid to once-backward regions of the Russian Empire, where problems with detection, early diagnosis and treatment of social diseases were very serious. Scientifi c expeditions organized by Professor Bronner to study syphilis’ impact on the indigenous people of Transbaikalia, as well as to conduct anthropological studies, yielded very tangible practical results in the improvement of the local population’s health. Venereological clinics, centers and medical points began to operate in the region. They provided direct medical and socio-sanitary monitoring of sexually transmitted diseases. The successful measures aimed at eliminating social diseases (especially all forms of syphilis) made it possible to quickly improve basic demographic and socio-economic indicators for the Transbaikal population, enhance its overall sanitary and hygienic level and in this way create a favorable environment for the region’s further development.

Keywords: history of medicine, V.M. Bronner, sexually transmitted diseases, syphilis, social venereology, dispensary, scientifi c expedition


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