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  • President's Message

    Author: Ganesh Rao

    The 69th Annual Meeting of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons will take place from October 19-23, 2019 in San Francisco, California. We will be celebrating the theme “The Age of Reason for Neurosurgery” inspired by the American Revolutionary Thomas Paine. The meeting theme inspires attendees to critically evaluate the evidence supporting neurosurgical practice. The meeting focus is particularly timely in the face of external scrutiny of procedural indications and outcomes.


    Alex Khalessi, Nader Pouratian, and Brian Nahed have put together a spectacular meeting that brings together neurosurgical thought leaders and international experts from other medical specialties. We will be highlighting research advancements that may change your practice and taking a deep dive on controversial topics to provide some clarity in managing complex neurosurgical illnesses. We are emphasizing the practice of surgery by showcasing operative techniques in multiple demonstration sessions devoted to practice innovations. For the first time, the meeting will include an operative technique abstract category to feature original operative procedures for the treatment of neurological disease. Finally, a dedicated interactive multimedia presentation session will provide the most opportunities for our members to present their original science across a variety of venues.

    Another significant change is the expansion of our content into all-day symposia on Saturday and Sunday. Based on the feedback from our members, these symposia will highlight subspecialty interests through comprehensive, all-day sessions. These specialty-focused symposia will occur throughout the weekend prior to the meeting and at a reduced cost compared to prior years. These subspecialty tracks have been created by the sections and will feature speakers who will bring a unique perspective to each subject.

    An outstanding lineup of special speakers with topical relevance will also be presenting during the general scientific sessions at the Annual Meeting. Our Dandy Orator is Doris Kearns-Goodwin. Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian whose latest book, Leadership: In Turbulent Times, is a New York Times bestseller and describes the leadership styles of four presidents at critical times in their administrations. Lucy Kalanithi, MD, the wife of neurosurgery resident Paul Kalanithi, MD who wrote When Breath  Becomes Air, will expand on the balance between reason and emotion when faced with disease. Our John Thompson History of Medicine Lecturer is Rebecca Skloot, the author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.

    Skloot writes about science and medicine and in particular how they intersect with ethical issues. Other notable special speakers include: New York Times columnist Bret Stephens, the Michael L. J. Apuzzo Creativity Lecturer, Shankar Vedantam, and science writers Carl
    Zimmer, and Aaron Carroll.

    This year’s meeting will be in San Francisco, perennially ranked as one of America’s most exciting cities. There is no shortage of things to do in the city and surrounding areas. We hope that you will take advantage of this amazing location in between educational events.

    Join us in San Francisco this fall as we explore the theme The Age of Reason for Neurosurgery. The meeting is being crafted to enlighten and inspire you. The quantity and quality of original science is being expanded to give you the most value for your time at the Annual Meeting. I look forward to seeing you there! 

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