Ivan Petrovich Pavlov, a famous Russian physiologist and physician was born at Ryazan, on September 14, 1849. His father named Peter Dmitrievich Pavlov was a priest in Ryazan. He did his first schooling in a church school of Ryazan. Adding to this, he further continued his studies there at the theological seminary.
Early life and education
Initially Pavlov was unaware of science, but it was in the year 1860 when the liberal thoughts of I. M. Sechenov known as the father of Russian physiology and D. I. Pisarev (the then most famous Russian literary critics) incited him to discard his religious studies and dedicated his whole life in studying science. As a result, he got himself registered in the mathematics and physics to pursue natural science, in 1870. Gradually, Pavlov started and developed a keen interest in physiology. Soon, when he was in his first course, he produced Afanasyev, with the cooperation of another student. It was his initial academic thesis that defined the working of the physiology related to pancreatic nerves.
Pavlov finished his study in 1875 with an excellent record and got the degree in Candidate of Natural Sciences. Nonetheless, encouraged by his irresistible curiosity in physiology subject, he determined to carry on his course and head for the Academy of Medical Surgery in order to pursue the third course. In 1879, he finished this and was once again honored by gold medal.
Beginning of his profession
Ivan Pavlov got a companionship while being in the Academy after he appeared in the competitive exam. He also acquired a designation of Director of the Physiological Laboratory in the clinic of S. P. Botkin known as a popular Russian clinician who allowed him to carry on his dedicated research work. His major achievement in career began when he was called in the Institute of Experimental Medicine to direct and organize the Department of Physiology in 1890. He served there for forty-five yeas till the end part of his life. The Institute turned into among the most significant centers of researchers for physiological research.
Pavlov’s contribution to the medical science
In the beginning of his research Pavlov got international acclaim and fame. His work discovered the way of studying the behavior with more objective technique. Pavlov described that how animals or humans can be taught to react in a definite way to a particular stimulus. It pulled remarkable curiosity of people worldwide from the time he presented his first results. Till today, his thesis is used in many fields like anti-phobia treatment and many more similar fields. His findings are also used to treat phobias that come to the mind by certain environmental condition, such as heights or crowds. During the treatment patient first learn the technique of muscle relaxation. Then, in the next few days, a patient is told to imagine the fear-producing situation while trying to reduce the anxiety by relaxation. To the end of treatment an extreme anxiety-provoking situation is brought to mind without causing any anxiety. This process of treatment is known as systematic desensitization. He was praised globally for his findings and support in many incurable and complex diseases.
He was elected as a corresponding member in the Russian Academy of Sciences in 1901. In 1904, he was honored with Nobel Prize and got world recognition for research pertaining to the digestive system. He was also elected Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences in 1907. Again, in 1912 he was awarded with an honorary doctorate at Cambridge University. Apart from all this, on the proposal given of Medical Academy of Paris, he was awarded with the Order of the Legion of Honor (1915).
Pavlov got married in 1881 with Seraphima (Sara) Vasilievna Karchevskaya. She was a daughter of a doctor living in the Black Sea fleet and teacher by profession. The couple had five children, one of their sons named as Wirchik however died early in his young age. Finally on February 27, 1936, the great psychologist – Dr. Pavlov left for heavenly world when he was in Leningrad.