Dr. Vera Gedroits was concerned at the low hygiene standards, nutrition and sanitation, and thus, made recommendations to improve the conditions.
Google celebrates Russian surgeon, professor, poet, and author Dr. Vera Gedroits on her 151st birthday today. Known as Russia’s first female military surgeon, Dr. Gedroits was one of the world’s first female professors of surgery, who saved countless lives through her fearless service and innovations in the field of medicine.
Vera Ignatievna Gedroits was born on this day in 1870 into a prominent family of Lithuanian royal descent in Kiev, which was part of the Russian Empire then.
She studied medicine in Switzerland and returned home during the 20th century. Soon she began her medical career as the surgeon at a factory hospital. As a young physician, Dr Gedroits was concerned at the low hygiene standards, nutrition and sanitation, and thus, made recommendations to improve the conditions.
During the Russo-Japanese War in 1904, Dr. Gedroits volunteered as a surgeon on a Red Cross hospital train. Under threat of enemy fire, she performed complex abdominal operations in a converted railway car. The Russian government adopted her techniques as the new standard.
Following her battlefield service, Dr. Gedroits worked as a surgeon for the Russian royal family. When she returned home to Kiev, she was appointed professor of surgery at the University of Kiev in 1929.
Dr Gedroits authored several medical papers on nutrition and surgical treatments. She also published multiple collections of poems, and several nonfiction works, including the 1931 memoir — “Life,”– which narrated the story of her personal journey.