ST. LOUIS - Because of strong growth and in keeping with national trends, Saint Louis University's division of neurosurgery will be reorganized as a department. The change, effective July 1, will align the department with other academic neurosurgical training programs in the U.S., of which about 90 percent are organized as departments.
|Saleem Abdulrauf, M.D.|
Nationally recognized for leadership, research, education and innovation in neurosurgery, the division is poised for future growth.
The department will be chaired by Saleem Abdulrauf, M.D., a leader in the field, who currently serves as vice president of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, secretary of the North American Skull Base Society and secretary general of the World Federation of Skull Base Societies. A pioneer in the field, Abdulrauf developed a high blood-flow brain bypass technique that is less invasive and keeps more blood flowing in the brain than previous bypass surgeries for brain tumors and aneurisms.
SLU neurosurgeon Richard Bucholz, M.D., who holds the K.R. Smith endowed chair in neurosurgery, has been named vice-chair of research for the new department. Bucholz is an internationally renowned innovator who, among other accomplishments, invented the Stealth Station, a device now widely used to make cranial and spinal surgery safer and less invasive. He has also pioneered the development of the radiosurgical program at the University and the use of advanced functional imaging such as magnetoencephalography to guide functional cranial procedures.
"With an ever-increasing national and international presence, our neurosurgeons continue to make their mark on the field," said Philip Alderson, M.D., dean of the School of Medicine. "Reorganizing the division as a department will better position our faculty to continue their exceptional work."
Over the past 18 months, the division of neurosurgery has added six new full time faculty members and opened the Center for Cerebrovascular and Skull Base Surgery, which brings together specialists from neurosurgery, neurology, head and neck surgery and radiology to treat patients from around the world who have complicated brain tumors and aneurysms. This Center will be folded into the new Department, along with the Division's activities in peripheral and cranial stimulation for psychiatric and degenerative neurological disorders.
In addition to patient care, SLU's neurosurgeons are leaders in education and research. Each year, SLU hosts courses for neurosurgical trainees at the University's state-of-the-art Practical Anatomy and Surgical Education Center, and conducts ground-breaking research, including a U.S. Department of Defense-funded traumatic brain injury study aimed at better understanding combat injuries.
Established in 1836, Saint Louis University School of Medicine has the distinction of awarding the first medical degree west of the Mississippi River. The school educates physicians and biomedical scientists, conducts medical research, and provides health care on a local, national and international level. Research at the school seeks new cures and treatments in five key areas: cancer, liver disease, heart/lung disease, aging and brain disease, and infectious disease.