Nikolay Ivanovich Pirogov: A Surgeon's Contribution to Military and Civilian Anaesthesia

Anaesthesia. 2015 Feb;70(2):219-27. doi: 10.1111/anae.12916. Epub 2014 Nov 4.


A key figure in the development of anaesthesia in Russia was the surgeon Nikolay Ivanovich Pirogov (1810-1881). He experimented with ether and chloroform and organised the general introduction of anaesthesia in Russia for patients undergoing surgery. He was the first to perform systematic research into anaesthesia-related morbidity and mortality. More specifically, he was one of the first to administer ether anaesthesia on the battlefield, where the principles of military medicine that he established remained virtually unchanged until the outbreak of the Second World War.

Publication types

  • Biography
  • Historical Article
  • Portrait

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesiology / history*
  • History, 19th Century
  • Military Medicine / history*
  • Russia (Pre-1917)
  • Specialties, Surgical / history*

Personal name as subject

  • Nikolay Pirogov