New York—May 30, 2013
Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) will bring together some of the world’s experts in complex cervical spine surgery to address the challenges and successful outcomes for patients with unusual conditions. The symposium will take place Friday, May 31 at HSS in New York City.
Each year more than 200,000 cervical spine surgeries are performed in the United States to treat conditions ranging from spinal deformity to degenerative disc disease.
"We are honored to welcome faculty from around the world to join our spine and scoliosis surgeons in sharing experiences with rare and highly specialized procedures on the cervical spine," said Darren R. Lebl, M.D., a cervical spine surgeon at HSS and co-director of the symposium. "HSS spine surgeons have much to share on cervical spine surgery, and we look forward to a stimulating intellectual exchange."
Such presentations and conversations are of particular importance due to the precision required in treating the cervical spine (vertebrae C1-C7) and the occipitocervical region (the articulation of the upper portion of the cervical spine with the base of the skull).
The proximity to the top of the spinal cord demands a delicate approach, explained Matthew Cunningham, M.D., Ph.D., a spine surgeon at HSS and co-director of the symposium. Further complicating such surgery, some cervical spine disorders and injuries are so rare that they are seldom published in medical literature.
“The cervical spine is of particular concern,” said Dr. Cunningham. “Injuries and conditions that affect that area can be life-threatening or severely debilitating, affecting the ability to walk, feel or use fine motor skills.”
"Cervical spine surgery often requires a multidisciplinary team approach, and communication amongst practitioners is essential. Experienced spine surgeons have many techniques that are designed to restore normal physical activity and to maximize the patients' overall function," said Dr. Lebl.
Complex Cervical Spine Symposium attendees (neurosurgeons; orthopedic, pediatric orthopedic and spines surgeons; as well as residents, fellows and medical students) on site will benefit from the opportunity to acquire knowledge that may not necessarily be available elsewhere. Speakers will present on specialized topics in the field and share the latest treatments for these patients.
Session highlights include:
Dr. Kuniyoshi Abumi, from Hokkaido University Graduate School of Medicine in Sapporo, Japan, will present the symposium’s keynote address. Dr. Abumi is also the inaugural president of the Cervical Spine Research Society - Asia Pacific Division.
Other guest faculty include:
In addition to Drs. Lebl and Cunningham, HSS orthopedic spine surgeons participating include: