Karl Rokitansky, Austrian pathologist

Karl Rokitansky, Austrian pathologist

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Karl Freiherr von Rokitansky (1804-1874), Austrian pathologist. Rokitansky graduated medical school but never practised clinical medicine, instead taking a post in Vienna as a pathologist. He is regarded as one of the greatest pathologists of all time, and a founder of modern pathological anatomy as a result of his extensive publication Handbuch der pathologischen anatomie. Although sources vary, Rokitansky is reported to have performed over 100,000 autopsies. He was the first to show that bacteria infect lesions, before he used a microscope for the first time in 1843, and was a supporter of Semmelweis' controversial asepticism (free from pathogens).

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