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Special Communication
October 2013

Dermatologic Relationships Between the United States and German-Speaking Countries: Part 3—The Europeans Come to the United States

Author Affiliations
  • 1Retired
  • 2Department of Dermatology, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York
JAMA Dermatol. 2013;149(10):1217-1220. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2013.5783

Following World War II, dermatology in German-speaking Europe faced enormous challenges, including the need to rebuild damaged or destroyed facilities, the replacement of the loss of many prewar leaders, and a raging venereal disease epidemic. Restoration of academic excellence and leadership required that young German-speaking dermatologists had to seek additional training in the United States, thereby reversing the historical trends of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Some of the initial visitors included Herbert Goldschmidt, Egon Macher, Gerd Steigleder, and Klaus Wolff. By the 1970s, there were numerous German-speaking scholars coming to the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, with Albert Kligman and then to the Dermatology Branch at the National Institutes of Health and the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, and subsequently many other centers. Today, most of the leaders of German-speaking departments of dermatology have had some training in the United States.

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