Prof. MUDr. Karel Lewit, DrSc.

Prof. Karel Lewit was born in Ljubljana 25.4.1916, and died 2.10.2014 in Prague. His father, MUDr. Egon Lewit worked in the local department of infectious diseases till the end of 1st. Word War when he moved with his family to Prague. In MFkarellewit1934 Karel Lewit absolved gymnasium in Prague and started to study on a medical faculty. He aborted his studies when he emigrated to Paris 13.3.1939, where he could work in a Bichat-Claude Bernard hospital (department of surgery under prof. Mondor). From october 1939 he joined AGD (Adjutant General’ Department) of the 1st infantry regiment. He joined the retreat “fights” on the Seine and Loire rivers, in june 1939 he was reassigned to England. He stayed in England till 1944, and in september 1944 he was reassigned to Normandy as a member of Czechoslovakian Armored division. For his resistance he later received a prestigious military decoration “golden cross of ČSR” (Czechoslovak republic).

He finished his study on the medical faculty in 1946 and immediately joined a neurological clinic led by a notable doctor, Dr. Henner. Here prof. Lewit profiled himself under the lead of assistant Černý on the spine and intervertebral discs, and on the neuroradiology by prof. Jirout. These two directions had a crucial influence on the further professional development of prof. Lewit.

Lewit started to research the influence of the manual traction in 1948 and in 1951 he started with chiropractic treatment. He developed his activities and at the same time taught at a neurological clinic at Vinohrady in Prague under the leadership of prof. Macek in 1960, and then along with doc. Karel Obrda established Rehabilitation society in 1954, later called as a “section for manual medicine” which is now called myoskeletal society. Prof. Lewit started from the 50’s consistently teach the manipulative techniques, afterwards renamed to “manual” and finally “myoskeletal” medicine, it was developed with a functional approach to treat the disorder of the musculoskeletal system. At the same time, Lewit continuously developed the technique. He switched the original chiropractical approach through osteopathic to neuromuscular technique and soft tissue therapy. During his professional experience he cooperated with people like J. Sachs, D.G. Simons, F. Greenman, F. Gaymans, F. Mitchell, M. Berger.

Prof. Lewit along with prof. Vladimir Janda, doc. František Véle and prof. Jan Jirout established the so called “Prague school” and it became renown thanks to propagation by prof. Lewit who gave lectures and trainings to doctors from all kinds of countries, for example Germany, France, England, America, Australia, Bulgaria, Poland and afterwards also Russia. He spreaded the awareness of the Prague school and supported publication of the scientific articles and literature. In 1990 he was titled as professor.

Prof. Lewit worked in a Research Institute of Rheumatic Diseases, Central Institute of the railway health care. Institute of the locomotor treatment in Třeboň. In 1994 he returned to neurological clinic at Vinohrady in Prague, and from 1996 till 2012 he was working in a rehabilitation clinic of the Charles University in Motol, from 2008 he worked in CKP Dobříchovice. He also worked some time in Rehabilitation Institute Malvazinki, and physiotherapeutic center s.r.o. on Zličin in Prague.


  • Lewit, K.: Manipulační léčba v myoskeletální medicíně, kterou napsal jako učebnici a zároveň byla také jeho doktorskou prací. Vydání např. v němčině (7 vydání), v angličtině (3 vydání), česky (4 vydání), japonské a španělské vydání (2001)
  • Lewit, K.:Prevence vertobrogenních poruch „diskopatie“ z hlediska manipulační léčby se zřetelem na dětský věk. Praha SZdN 1962
  • Lewit, K.: Funkční dysmenorea a poruchy krajiny křížové. Prakt. Lék. 46, 1966, s. 822-826
  • Lewit,K.: Manualterapie und Rehabilitation des Bewegungsapparates. In: Manuelle Medizin heute, s. 129-133. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York, Tokyo, Springer 1985
  • Lewit, K.: Treatment of myofascial pain and other function disorders. In: Veroy, M, Merskey, H. Progress in Fibromyalgia and Myofasicial Pain, s. 375-392, Pain Research and Clinical Management Vol. 6, Elsevier, Amsterdam, London, New York, Tokyo, 1193
  • And many more…

Mgr. Iva Bílková, FYZIOklinika physiotherapy Ltd., Prague, Czech Republic

Source: web pages,,, informations obtained during studies under prof. Lewit

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