• Authors: Lipovtseva E.I.1, Pochivalov A.V.1, Panina O.A.1
  • Affiliations:
    1. Voronezh State Medical University N.N. Burdenko
  • Pages: 413-415
  • URL:

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In the second half of the 19th century, important events took place in the field of medical science and practice, which are considered a real breakthrough. The names of great medical scientists remained associated with these changes. One of these scientists was Stepan Fomich Khotovitsky (1796-1885), whose main scientific interests included obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, forensic medicine and medical police (hygiene), and infectious diseases. He is known as the first Russian pediatrician, one of the founders of the St. Petersburg pediatric school.

Full Text

I would like to provide information about such a great man, the Russian scientist Stepan Fomich Khotovitsky. Being a specialist in the field of obstetrics and gynecology, forensic medicine and medical police, he fell in love with pediatrics so much that Stepan Fomich devoted many scientific works to pediatrics. He laid the foundations of the doctrine of childhood illnesses in Russia and is known to us as the first Russian pediatrician, one of the founders of the St. Petersburg pediatric school. It is the leadership of Pediatrika, which has become a fundamental work, that plays the role of building scientific and practical Russian pediatrics.
Hotovitsky S.F. was born in 1796 in the family of a priest in the Volyn province of Starokonstantinovsky district. Following in his father's footsteps, he graduated from a theological seminary in Zhytomyr, and in 1813 he successfully passed the entrance examinations in St. Petersburg. In 1817 he graduated from the academy with a silver medal and was awarded a set of silver surgical instruments. During the years of study at the academy, his teachers and mentors were such great scientists as Professor of the Department of Anatomy and Physiology Zagorsky P.A., Head of the Department of Surgery Bush I.F., Professor of the Department of Forensic Medicine, Medical Police and Midwifery Gromov S.A. After graduating from the academy, Stepan Fomich Khotovitsky underwent an internship in foreign clinics along with other best graduates of the academy. From 1818 to 1821, he managed to visit the leading clinics in Vienna, London and Edinburgh, where he gained experience and went through his development as a practicing physician. In the same years, working in foreign clinics, he studied foreign languages. Stepan Fomich Khotovitsky was fluent in English, German, French, Latin, Greek, and Polish. The most memorable and important for him was the acquaintance with the professor of obstetrics at the University of Edinburgh, J. Hamilton, with whom he continued professional communication in the future. In 1821, Khotovitsky S.F. returned to St. Petersburg, to the Medical and Surgical Academy, where he served as adjunct professor at the department of midwifery, forensic medicine and judicial police [2].
Working at the department, Khotovitsky S.F. For more than 10 years he has been collecting material on the semiotics of childhood diseases and the anatomical and physiological characteristics of children. The result of this enormous work was his thesis "Paedo gynaicoiatrices synoptica expositio evolutioni et revolutioni vitae superstructa" and he received his medical degree in 1823. In his work, Khotovitsky S.F. gave a detailed description of the structure and functions of the fetus, described a number of malformations, and also substantiated the relationship of the fetus with the lifestyle, diseases and diet of the mother. The dissertation described only the first period of human life - intrauterine. Khotovitsky S.F. emphasized that each of the periods of a person's life is characterized by its morphological and functional data, which determine a differentiated approach to lifestyle and nutrition. Treatment of diseases and examination also has age characteristics [3]. He taught to identify and treat diseases in children in accordance with their anatomical and physiological characteristics and age. The main task was to obtain "summary data on the development of children's and female organisms from birth to old age", thus he emphasized that the body undergoes constant anatomical and physiological changes throughout ontogenesis, successively moving from one functional state to another [1]. The analysis of these regularities became the first and most important step towards further scientific and practical activities of the talented doctor Khotovitsky S.F. [2].
In 1836, a separate department of obstetrics and teaching about women's and children's diseases was allocated at the Medical and Surgical Academy, headed by Stepan Fomich Khotovitsky. While working at this department, he introduced a course of lectures on pediatrics into the educational process. This was the period of the birth of pediatrics [4]. These lectures covered the features of the neonatal period, physiology, pathology in different periods of childhood. Khotovitsky S.F. was developed in 1844, the first curriculum for pediatrics, it opens ten beds for children under the age of three years as part of the women's and obstetric clinic. Thus, the children's department in Russia became the second after France, which made it possible to train students "at the bedside". Advanced training experience and scientific developments of Khotovitsky S.F. formed the basis of his fundamental manual "Pediatrika", published in 1847. Khotovitsky S.F. wrote: "Pediatrics is the science of the distinctive features in the structure, functions and diseases of the child's body and the basis on those features of maintaining health and treating diseases in children" [2]. Stepan Fomich always insisted that a child is not a reduced copy of an adult, and a very special approach is required for its examination and treatment.
Thus, the contribution of Khotovitsky S.F. in the development of pediatrics is invaluable. He defined goals and objectives, the place of pediatric


About the authors

Elizabeth Ivanovna Lipovtseva

Voronezh State Medical University N.N. Burdenko

Author for correspondence.

5th year student of the Faculty of Pediatrics

Russian Federation, 394036, Russia, Voronezh, st. Student, 10

Alexander Vladimirovich Pochivalov

Voronezh State Medical University N.N. Burdenko

ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9444-0258

Professor of the Department of Propaedeutics of Children's Diseases and Pediatrics

Russian Federation, 394036, Russia, Voronezh, st. Student, 10

Olga Alekseevna Panina

Voronezh State Medical University N.N. Burdenko

ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7351-3638
SPIN-code: 5865-1257

Candidate of Medical Sciences, Assistant of the Department of Phthisiology

Russian Federation, 394036, Russia, Voronezh, st. Student, 10


  1. Бабченко Е.С., Жукова И.Э., Панина О.А. Личность врача в истории медицины / Е.С. Бабченко, И.Э. Жукова, О.А. Панина // Молодежный инновационный вестник. – 2019. -Т.8, № S1. – C.150.
  2. Шишкин А.П. С.Ф. Хотовицкий (к 200-летию со дня рождения) // Русский медицинский журнал. – 1997. – №6. – C. 61
  3. Вайль В.С. Первый русский педиатр С.Ф. Хотовицкий / В.С. Вайль. – Ленинград: Ленинградское отделение Медгиза, 1949. – 127 с.
  4. Богданова В.А., Леднева В.С., Панина О.А. Детский доктор мира / В.А. Богданова, В.С. Леднева, О.А. Панина // Молодежный инновационный вестник. – 2019. -Т.8, № S1. – C.41-42.

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