The renowned Russian physician Dr Fyodor Uglov died in St Petersburg at the age of 103. He performed over 6,500 operations and won an entry in the Guinness Book of Records in 1994 as the world’s oldest practising surgeon. Dr Uglov was a great champion of healthy lifestyles.
Dr Uglov was a pioneer of many new international trends in surgery, especially in regards to operations on the lungs and heart. His book, The Surgeon’s Heart, became a bestseller. The surgeon, whose motto was “there are no completely hopeless situations, and there should always be a way out”, shall be remembered as being fearless by his colleagues. Often, he took on board cases that his colleagues considered hopeless, and completed the operations successfully.
In a well-known case, he was performing an operation during the siege of Leningrad during World War II and a shell exploded outside the window and the shock wave sent glass fragments flying into the room. Without thinking of his own safety, Dr Uglov bent over the patient to protect the wound. When the nurse told the surgeon that the explosion had made her drop the only clean scalpel on to the floor, Dr Uglov did not hesitate and completed the operation with a razor.
“The life of Fyodor Uglov won admiration across the globe; this veteran surgeon saved many thousands of lives”, said Vadim Tyulpanov, the speaker of the St Petersburg Legislative Assembly.
23 June 2008
Voice of Russia World Service
St Petersburg Times