Symposia Provide the Latest Research, Emerging Technologies, and Novel Therapies

Peter Kan, MD
Nandan Lad, MD
Adnan Siddiqui, MD
Ashwini D. Sharan, MD FACS

The tradition of the symposium goes back thousands of years. According to the ancient Greeks, the word “symposium” meant a philosophical dialogue or convivial meeting for intellectual discussion. Ancient symposia were often accompanied by food, poetry, and music. Today’s symposia have evolved significantly, but they still embody the idea of a group of intellectuals coming together for a free exchange of ideas.

The CNS Annual Meeting has its own tradition of symposia. These day-long meetings on a single topic are presented through a series of lectures and sessions. Symposia provide an important channel for the exchange of information and are an opportunity for neurosurgeons to hear the latest research. This year, two symposia are being held, and while both involve lunch breakouts with corporate sponsors, music or the recitation of poetry is solely at the discretion of the faculty.

Symposium 01

The Neurovascular Update Symposium, Saturday, September 24, from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, provides a forum for attendees to obtain the latest information on cerebrovascular surgery, endovascular neurosurgery, and management of ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke from a panel of national experts.

This course is designed for the busy general neurosurgeon and provides a concise update on relevant topics and controversies in cerebrovascular surgery. Throughout the course, recent literature regarding patient selection and outcomes for endovascular treatment of acute ischemic stroke as well as emerging technologies on endovascular stroke therapy will be reviewed.

Discussions will also be held in a point/counterpoint format on the controversies around endovascular (balloon angioplasty and stenting) and surgical revascularization (EC-IC bypass) for intracranial atherosclerotic, or vaso-occlusive diseases, based on current evidence and guidelines. Another discussion on endovascular and surgical revascularization (CAS versus CEA) for extracranial atherosclerotic diseases will occur, with a focus on new and ongoing trials such as CREST2.

The course will then cover optimal treatment of intracranial aneurysms, including surgery (clip reconstruction and bypass), traditional endovascular techniques (primary and assisted-coil embolization), flowdiversion, and other new technologies such as intrasaccular devices and novel stents and coils.

Finally, a comprehensive panel discussion on multimodal treatment options (surgery, embolization, and radiosurgery) for intracranial arteriovenous malformations and dural arteriovenous fistulas will be held. The course will conclude with evidence-based management and emerging minimally invasive surgical techniques on the management of intracerebral hemorrhage. Sponsored breakout sessions will be hosted by Penumbra, Medtronic, and Stryker.

Symposium 02

Spinal Cord Stimulation: The Transformation, Sunday, September 25, from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, provides a forum for attendees to obtain the latest information on neuromodulation for chronic pain, including new paradigms in the frequency of stimulation, novel target structures such as the dorsal root ganglion, the emergence of new tools, and management of chronic neuropathic pain conditions from a panel of national experts.

This course is designed for general neurosurgeons interested in learning relevant topics and controversies in neuromodulation. Participants will have the ability to learn the latest concepts on neurostimulation paradigms ranging from tonic, high frequency, and Burst stimulation. Novel therapies such as dorsal root ganglion (DRG) stimulation for complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) will be discussed, as well as the role of imaging and the significance of MRI compatibility.

The course will then cover novel therapies such as neuromodulation for low back pain and new techniques such as targeted muscle stimulation, and how neuromodulation procedures may fit into your practice. Experts will then discuss the nuances of surgical techniques for implantation, including complication avoidance, awake versus asleep placement, and revision surgeries.

Finally, a discussion of emerging therapies such as autonomic stimulation for cluster headache, peripheral neurostimulation, and wireless stimulation technologies will be covered. By the end of the symposium, attendees will have a comprehensive overview of the modern-day transformation that has occurred in spinal cord stimulation. Sponsored breakout sessions will be hosted by Medtronic and other industry leaders.