Disgustingly Healthy

Documentary ( 2009 )

Directed by Michaela Kirst and Robert Cibis, 2 x 45 min., HD, co-produced with ARTE/RBB.

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Biotherapy with leeches and maggots.


Since the US - Food and Drug Administration recognized leeches and maggots as a medical device in 2004, more and more doctors have overcome their own prejudices and advice their patients to set their repulsion aside to see these squirming and crawling creatures as what they really are - a wonder of nature. The agonizing pain of rheumatism, wounds that will not heal, limbs that are about to wither away - leeches and maggots have the powers to heal and bring relief, and they might even have more in store than what is known today. The films tell the story of the suspenseful rise , the dramatic fall, and the surprising renaissance of the leech and the maggot in Western medicine, and the ambivalent relationship that we have to these little 'monsters'. A Liaison between fascination and disgust.


  • Author: Michaela Kirst and Robert Cibis
  • Director: Michaela Kirst and Robert Cibis
  • Producer: Robert Cibis and Lilian Franck
  • Camera: Jakub Bejnarowicz
  • Commissioning Editor: Klaus Eichler, Anna Vanessa Cussen