OBITUARY – Professor Alexander Potapov

Professor Alexander Potapov


It is with great sadness that Burdenko National Center of neurosurgery announces passing of Prof. Alexander Potapov, a distinguished leader of the world and Russian neurosurgery.

He was born in Uzbekistan in 1948. In 1972 he graduated with honours the 2nd Moscow medical institute. Since that time his life has been inseparable from Burdenko institute of neurosurgery. In 1984 there was a dramatic change of profession – a renowned intensive care specialist becomes a neurosurgeon.

Being big-minded, shrewd and decisive he headed the department of cranio-cerebral trauma at the age of 36. Decisiveness, concreteness, minimalism – that was the style of Prof. Alexander Potapov. He had an acute sense of novelty.  He developed the concept of primary and secondary damage of the brain, enlarged the conceptual approaches for classification and treatment of focal and diffuse forms of head injury, advanced reconstructive and minimally invasive surgery of TBI sequelae and complications. Lately his special interest was plasticity of the damaged brain, metabolic navigation and mass-spectrometry with a special emphasis being placed on precision surgery of glial tumors.

Alexander Potapov is a renowned scientist in the world. He was Vice-President of WFNS (2009-2013), and also President of the Association of neurosurgeons of Russia (since 2018). From 2014 to 2019 he was the first director of the National center of neurosurgery n.a. N.N.Burdenko.

Alexander Potapov was kind-hearted and communicative. He had many friends all over the world, on all continents. Among them: Franco Servadei, Yoko Kato, Madjid and Amir Samii, Klaus von Wild, Zbigniew Czernicki, Jerzy Jurkeviecz, Armando Basso, Andrew Maas, Geirmund Unsgaard, James Ecklund, Thomas Gennarelli, Evgeny Pedachenko, George Dohrmann, Peter Black, Jacques Brotchi, Graham Teasdale, Juha Hernesniemi, Iver Langmoen, John Povlishock, Gail Rosseau, Rudolf Fahlbusch, Vladimir Zelman, Hans-Erich Diemath, Miguel Arraez, Jean-Michel Derlon, Panagiotis Selviaridis, Nicole, Steinbuchel, Nicolas Foroglou, Kostas Fountas, Maximiliam Mehdorn, Karl Schaller, Basant Misra, Yong-Kwang Tu, Tetsuo Kanno, Nelson Oyesiku, Mehmet Zileli, Lukas Rasulic, Ross Bullock, Maurice Choux, Ruben Fanarjyan, Georgy Ingorokwa, Michalakis Spyrou, Panagiotis Stilidis, Wolf Ingo Steudel and many-many others.

It is a great loss for us and we will always remember our colleague and dear friend!

April 2024