Hubert von Luschka (1820–1875): his life, discoveries, and contributions to our understanding of the nervous system

Historical vignette

R. Shane Tubbs M.S., P.A.-C., Ph.D. 1 , Payman Vahedi M.D. 2 , Marios Loukas M.D., Ph.D. 3 , Mohammadali M. Shoja M.D. 4 and Aaron A. Cohen-Gadol M.D., M.Sc. 4
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  • 1 Pediatric Neurosurgery, Children’s Hospital, Birmingham, Alabama;
  • 2 Department of Neurosurgery, Tabriz University (Medical Sciences), Tabriz, Iran;
  • 3 Department of Anatomical Sciences, St. George’s University, Grenada and
  • 4 Clarian Neuroscience, Goodman Campbell Brain and Spine, and Indiana University, Department of Neurosurgery, Indianapolis, Indiana
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One of the most prolific anatomical writers of the 19th century, Hubert von Luschka made significant contributions to our knowledge of neuroanatomy. His publications and textbooks were standards for their day. However, very little is written of his life in either the English or the German literature. His name lives on eponymously in more than 20 anatomical structures, including those most relevant to the neurosurgeon, the foramina of Luschka and uncovertebral joints. In this article, the authors discuss the life and contributions of this prominent German surgeon and anatomist.

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Contributor Notes

Address correspondence to: R. Shane Tubbs, M.S., P.A.-C., Ph.D., Pediatric Neurosurgery, Children's Hospital, 1600 7th Avenue South, ACC 400, Birmingham, Alabama 35233. email: shane.tubbs@chsys.org.

Please include this information when citing this paper: published online September 24, 2010; DOI: 10.3171/2010.8.JNS10683.

  • 1

    Dvorak J, & Sandler A: Historical perspective. Hubert von Luschka: pioneer of clinical anatomy. Spine 19:24782482, 1994

  • 2

    Fisher RG, Surgery of the congenital anomalies. Walker AE: A History of Neurological Surgery New York, Hafner Publishing, 1967. 334361

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  • 3

    Haubrich WS: Luschka of the Crypts of Luschka. Gastroenterology 132:1216, 2007

  • 4

    Luschka H: Der Hirnanhang und die Steissdrüse des menschlichen Herzens Berlin, Verlag von Georg Reimer, 1860

  • 5

    Luschka H: Der Nervus phrenicus des Menschen Tübingen, H. Laupp, 1853

  • 6

    Luschka H: Die Adergeflechte des menschlichen Gehirns Berlin, Verlag von Georg Reimer, 1855

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    Luschka H: Die Anatomie des Menschen in Rücksicht auf das Bedürfnis der praktischen Heilkunde Tübingen, H. Laupp, 18621869, (3 volumes)

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  • 8

    Luschka H: Die Nerven des menschlichen Wirbelcanals Tübingen, H. Laupp, 1850

  • 9

    Luschka H: Die Nerven in der harten Hirnhaut Tübingen, H. Laupp, 1850

  • 10

    Luschka H: Über Maß- und Zahlenverhältnisse des menschlichen Körpers Tübingen, H. Laupp, 1871

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    Swedenborg E: The Brain Considered Anatomically, Physiologically and Philosophically, Vol II London, James Speirs, 1887

  • 13

    Tubbs RS, , Loukas M, , Shoja MM, , Shokouhi G, & Oakes WJ: François Magendie (1783–1855) and his contributions to the foundations of neuroscience and neurosurgery. Historical vignette. J Neurosurg 108:10381042, 2008

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  • 14

    Walker AE: The Genesis of Neuroscience Park Ridge, IL, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, 1998

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