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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Burdenko Doctors Say That Sychyov Was Misdiagnosed

Military doctors testified Monday that Andrei Sychyov, the victim of a high-profile hazing incident, suffered from a hereditary illness that led to the amputation of his legs and genitals, Interfax reported.

Prosecutors maintain that older soldiers forced Sychyov to squat for several hours and savagely beat him last New Year's Eve in the barracks of the Chelyabinsk Armor Academy.

The doctors in Chelyabinsk who treated Sychyov testified that the amputations resulted from the hazing incident.

But a specialist from Burdenko Military Hospital told the court in Chelyabinsk that Sychyov suffered from thrombophlebitis, a condition that occurs when a blood clot causes inflammation in the veins. The condition involves hereditary factors in some patients.

Alexander Statkevich, head of Burdenko's cardiovascular surgery department, testified Monday that, in Sychyov's case, thrombophlebitis could have been triggered by a case of the flu, physical exhaustion, exposure to cold or a small wound on his left toe.

Statkevich also said Sychyov would have suffered from intense pain if forced to squat for an extended period and that he would have changed position before blood clots could have formed.

The local doctors in Chelyabinsk who treated Sychyov arrived at an incorrect diagnosis, Statkevich said. Had he been properly diagnosed and treated, Sychyov's left leg could have been saved, he added.

The Burdenko specialist's testimony could help the Defense Ministry to deflect public criticism over the case, which has spotlighted the rampant abuse of conscripts in the military.

(AP, MT)