IOF was sad to learn of the passing of Dieter Felsenberg on July 6, 2020, at the age of 74. Professor Felsenberg, a globally renowned expert in musculoskeletal diseases, had been a member of the IOF Committee of Scientific Advisors (CSA) from the Foundation’s very beginning in 1998, and he participated actively in the IOF Bone Imaging Group and the Epidemiology/Quality of Life Working Groups.
The bone and muscle field has lost a leading light, who will be greatly missed by all the colleagues who have known and have had the pleasure of working with him.
Many of us fondly recall his generosity of spirit and enthusiasm for musculoskeletal imaging; he was a pioneering investigator in our EVOS-EPOS studies and contributed in many of our most successful educational initiatives. All of us at IOF extend our heartfelt condolences to Prof. Felsenberg’s family, friends and colleagues.
Prof. Felsenberg was the founder and former director of the Centre for Muscle and Bone Research (ZMK) at the Charité University in Berlin.
Below is an excerpt from the obituary issued by the ZMK which so wonderfully describes his extraordinary accomplishments:
The Center for Muscle and Bone Research mourns the loss of its former director, the passionate scientist, and the esteemed person who was inseparably connected with radiology at the Benjamin Franklin Campus for so many years - since 1978.
After studying medicine in Erlangen and at the Free University of Berlin, Dieter Felsenberg has been shaping the clinic, teaching and research at the Charité as a radiologist and university lecturer since 1986. In 1988 he founded the Osteoporosis Research Group and in 2011 the internationally renowned Center for Muscle and Bone Research in Radiology on the Benjamin Franklin Campus.
His research interests mainly included the development and evaluation of radiological diagnostics in the field of musculoskeletal diseases with a focus on the quantification of bone architecture and bone strength. As a controversial scientist, he shaped research on muscle and bone interaction under the motto "think different, explore new ideas", whose ideas were reflected in the congress "Muscles and Bones - New Worlds! Research projects on muscle and bone interaction during immobilization as well as under weightlessness formed a focal point in cooperation with international space agencies and centers for sport medicine. In clinical research, he contributed significantly to a better understanding of the clinical picture of osteoporosis in prevention, treatment and epidemiology.
Parallel to his research, Dieter Felsenberg conducted his own osteological specialty consultation at the Benjamin Franklin Campus, thus establishing a model of translational medicine from basic research to clinical application. In addition to his scientific successes, Prof. Dieter Felsenberg remained above all a conscientious and sensitive doctor.
Since the education of young colleagues and junior scientists was very important to him, Dieter Felsenberg founded the German Academy for Osteological and Rheumatological Sciences (DAdorW). He was also co-founder of the Center for Space Medicine at the Free University of Berlin, the German Society for Muscle and Bone Research (DGfMK) and the International Society of Musculoskeletal and Neuronal Interaction (ISMNI). In 2004 he implemented the German Jaw Necrosis Registry. Since April 2011 he has been an honorary professor at the School of Science, Technology and Health at the University Campus Suffolk, UK.
Dieter Felsenberg loved his work and inspired colleagues, staff and patients with his contagious enthusiasm. Working with him was characterised by warmth and humour, a lively community, generosity and openness, combined with integrity and high scientific standards.