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Ludwig Grünwald

Born 1863-02-10
Died 1927-08-11

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German otolaryngologist, born February 10, 1863, Wien; died August 11, 1927.

Biography of Ludwig Grünwald

Ludwig Grünwald was the son of Samuel Grünwald, born ca. 1835, who came from Arad in Hungary, and Bertha Biel. Ludwig grew up in Vienna before studying medicine in Munich, where he settled permanently. He married Baroness Wilhelmine, Johanna Barbara von Rad from Augsburg. They had three children, two sons and a daughter. After having completed his studies he was conferred doctor of medicine and subsequently opened practice as an internist and began specialising on otolaryngology. Besides this he was for some years in charge of a private clinic in Bad Reichenhall.

Ludwig Grünwald was a humanist with a broad cultural background. One of his most famous patients was the then nuncio of Bavaria, Monseigneur Eugenio Pacelli, who later became Pope Pius XII. Although not sharing views of the world, the two maintained a friendly relationship.

Ludwig Grünwald also concerned himself with haematology. He worked in Richard May's laboratory in Munich when they developed the solution now known as May-Grünwald stain. He was probably the first to describe the Haller cells in the nasal mucosa, first found by Albrecht von Haller (1708-1777).

Ludwig Grünwald was the first to attempt the surgical treatment of nasal suppuration and disease involving the ethnoid and spheroid bones and to nasal sinusitis.

The first operations in the sinus maxillaris were done in 1743 by Louis Lamorier (1696-1777) and later by Pierre Joseph Desault (1744-1795) in 1798 (posthumous), both via fossa canina. In Berlin Ernst Georg Ferdinand Küster (1839-1904) originated modern surgery of the sinuses with a development of Desault's method of penetrating the wall of the sinus. The after-care in these operations was complicated by the compact tamponation with rubber balloons. Charles Heath in London and Robertson in Newcastle-on-Tyne trepanned the sinus maxillaris via the fossa canina in 1889 and 1892, though without drainage.

We thank Thomas Grünwald Lindenfels, Rothenburg, Germany, for information submitted. Ludwig Grünwald was his great grandfather.

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