Prof Maurice Edmond MÃ¼ller
Un homme exceptionnel
It is with deep regret that we announce the death of Maurice MÃ¼ller, in his home town of Bern, Switzerland, on 10 May 2009. He was in his 92nd year.
Prof MÃ¼ller has been described as the Orthopaedic Surgeon of the 20th Century. He was born in Biel, Switzerland, in the last year of the Great War. He studied Medicine at the Universities of NeuchÃ¢tel, Bern and Lausanne, graduating at the University of Zurich in 1946, where he did much of his training as an orthopaedic surgeon. His compassion for the disabled took him to Jimma in Ethiopia as a Chief Resident. He became Professor and Director of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery of the Inselspital at the University of Bern in 1963.
His inventive, perceptive mind saw the opportunities to apply physics and engineering concepts to the treatment of fractures and hip arthritis. He was the driving force behind the development of the AO system which put fracture treatment onto a new high plane. The hip joint he designed in 1970 had been implanted a million times by 2002.
He authored 250 scientific papers, created a highly successful Research Institute in Bern and received 14 Honorary Degrees from universities around the world. He developed the most comprehensive system of classification for fractures and orthopaedic surgery outcomes ever known. It became the universal language for orthopaedic surgeons.
Maurice MÃ¼ller was a most generous man and a pillar of SICOT. His Presidency during the Triennium 1981-1984 was notable for its renewal of SICOTâs mandate, performance and stature in the world. His financial support for SICOT and the SICOT Foundation was given with quiet sincerity of the kind Antoine de Saint ExupÃ©ry describes: "Sincerity demands no reward". Dr MÃ¼llerâs charisma electrified any room he entered and lasted through his teachings, his ideas, his philosophical musings and often would end with mystifying magic expertly performed. He was an orthopaedic giant who will have an eternal place in the history of our profession.
He is survived by a son and two daughters, his wife Martha having recently predeceased him.