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The legacy of Saint Luke (Valentin Felixovich Voyno-Yasenetsky) to medical sciences

, Panagiota Spyropoulou

Abstract: Saint Luke, Archbishop of Simferopol and Crimea (1877‒1961), was born Valentin Felixovich Voyno-Yasenetsky in Kerch, Crimea. He served as an outstanding physician and Academic Professor of Topographic Anatomy and Operative Surgery at Medical School of Tashkent University. He worked extensively on the fields of surgery, regional anesthesia, pyogenic infections, ophthalmology, neurosurgery, oncology, orthopedics, otorhinolaryngology, gynecology, urology, and dentistry, often under difficult circumstances. He performed a wide variety of operations, from minor outpatient procedures to extremely complicated ones, followed by extensive inpatient management and treatment of ailing individuals. He published numerous research articles and books. His most acclaimed monograph entitled “Essays on the surgery of pyogenic infections” (“Sketches of purulent surgery”), focused on the broad field of surgery with special reference to the pyogenic infections and served as a reference tool and guide book for the next generations of physicians. The Stalin Prize was the highest professional honor awarded to Valentin Felixovich Voyno-Yasenetsky by the Soviet state in recognition of his contribution to science. Voyno-Yasenetsky was a blessed physician who had a major influence on both patients and colleagues, due to his fundamental ethical principles and values based on Christian beliefs. His life and scientific work have been an example of the practical unity of scientific truth and religious faith. He was ordained to the diaconate and priesthood, until he elevated to the ranks of Bishop and Archbishop. He was arrested and subsequently exiled for his religious beliefs and his glorification by the Orthodox Church as Saint Luke was held in Russia in 2000, as a recognition of God’s holiness manifesting in his life. Saint Luke received an honorable place in the history of Medicine and the Eastern Orthodox Church. The present study aims to highlight key elements of his life and his scientific contributions.
Keywords: history of Medicine / Archbishop / served / honor / sciences / Saint / Luke / treatment / extremely / surgery

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