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Eleonora Reicher: a pioneer of European rheumatology
  1. Eugene J Kucharz
  1. Professor emeritus, Department of Internal Medicine, Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland
  1. Correspondence to Professor emeritus Eugene J Kucharz, Internal Medicine, Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology, Medical University of Silesia, 40-635 Katowice, Ziolowa Street 45/47, Poland; ejkucharz{at}

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Eleonora Reicher life coincided with the emergence of rheumatology as a separate medical specialty. She was one of the most prominent founders of this specialty in Europe, and almost all current rheumatologists of Poland as well as other countries are subsequent generations of doctors coming from the school of Eleonora Reicher.

Eleonora Reicher was born on 29 September 1884 in Warsaw as a daughter of Bernard Reicher, a co-owner of the shoe and ribbon factory and his wife Eleonora née Wolfowicz. Warsaw at those days was a provincial town of so-called the Vistula Country, that is, the Polish lands under Russian partition. She was born to Jewish family but was sent to a private catholic school in Warsaw. She graduated of the school in 1900. Her father was going to raise her to be a wife and mother. She decided to receive baptism in 1903 in order to release from the father’s plans for her future live. According to the Napoleon Code that was applicable law in the part of Poland under the partition of Russian Empire, the baptism established her new legal status. Thanks to that, Eleonora Reicher was able to decide about her further fate by herself.1 She inherited some fortune from her grandparents and in the same year (1903), she went to Fribourg. There after completion of a preparatory course, she graduated in 1906 as bacalauré at es lettres. Later she was studied medicine at the University of Paris (1906–1907) and Bern (1907–1909 and 1912–1914) as well as biology in Bern (1909–1912). In 1912, Eleonora Reicher got a title of philosophy doctor in biology in Bern after presentation of the thesis ‘Ueber das Haftorgan von Gobius fluviatilis’ (On the adhesive organ of Monkey goby). She completed medical education in 1914 but she did not sit for …

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  • Handling editor Josef S Smolen

  • Contributors EJK is the sole author.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient and public involvement Patients and/or the public were not involved in the design, or conduct, or reporting, or dissemination plans of this research.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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