["Racial improvement" in Ravensburg]

Urologe A. 2012 Jun;51(6):862-6. doi: 10.1007/s00120-012-2849-y.
[Article in German]


After implementation of the Law for the Prevention of Progeny with Hereditary Diseases on 1 January 1934 the first enforced sterilizations were undertaken at the Städtische Krankenhaus-Heilig-Geist-Spital in Ravensburg. Between April 1934 and March 1938, 389 sterilization operations were performed. For later years no data is available, but it can be assumed that the total number is significantly greater. Patients affected were transferred to the Städtische Krankenhaus by the Psychiatric Clinic Weissenau, Gertrudisheim, and the Clinic for Deaf and Dumb in Wilhelmsdorf. In only about half of the cases was the rationale for the sterilization program stated. The main reasons included: mental illness (57%), schizophrenia (23%), and epilepsy (6%). This was similar to the total data published for all of Germany.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Eugenics / history*
  • Germany
  • History, 20th Century
  • Hospitals / history*
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders / history*
  • National Socialism / history*
  • Sterilization, Involuntary / history*