Aleksei Pospelov

Pospelov, Aleksei Ivanovich


Born Jan. 13 (25), 1846, in the city of Dankov, in what is now Lipetsk Oblast; died Nov. 20 or 21 (Dec. 3 or 4), 1916, in Moscow. Russian physician. Founder of the Moscow school of dermatologists and venereologists.

In 1869 Pospelov graduated from the medical faculty of Moscow University. He was a professor there from 1887 and headed the chair of skin and venereal diseases from 1893 to 1910.

Pospelov was the first to describe infection of the oral cavity’s mucous membrane accompanying acute psoriasis and erythema nodosum, as well as probe test symptoms with lupus vulgaris and the parched and wrinkled appearance of the skin with idiopathic progressive atrophy of the skin. Pospelov noted the significance of the nervous system in the origin, development, and course of dermatoses; in particular, he emphasized the identification of alopecia areata as a trophoneurosis. He suggested a number of new methods for treating skin diseases and syphilis, such as mercury preparation for elephantiasis and injection methods for syphilis. He also developed an original facial massage.

In 1874, Pospelov organized courses for midwives. In 1895 he founded a moulage museum in the skin clinic of Moscow University. He is the author of the first Russian textbook of skin diseases (1900). Pospelov was the founder and chairman (1891–1916) of the Moscow Scientific Society of Dermatologists and Venereologists. He was an honorary member of many Russian and foreign scientific medical societies. Among his students were E. S. Glavche, G. I. Meshcherskii, and M. A. Chlenov.


Rukovodstvo k izucheniiu kozhnykh boleznei dlia vrachei i studentov, 5th ed. Moscow, 1905.


Pospelova, N. N. A. I. Pospelov. Moscow, 1962.