U of M surgical team reshapes baby’s skull to allow normal brain growth, help him grow into an active toddler
At 15 months old, Brockton Vogtlin is an active, normal little boy. “He's mobile and so close to walking…he's being a typical, risk-taking boy and I swear he hits his head constantly, but it doesn't phase him at all,” laughed his mother, Taylor Vogtlin. She is thankful that it doesn’t phase him. Brockton was born when he was just 27 weeks old, 13 weeks shy of a normal-term pregnancy. “He spent 89 days in the neonatal intensive care unit [NICU],” said Taylor. It was while he was in the NICU that he was initially diagnosed with plagiocephaly – a condition characterized by an asymmetrical distortion or flattening of one side of the skull. He was then referred to nurse practitioner Leah Kann in the U’s Plagiocephaly Program.
New residents look forward to caring for patients, working with their colleagues and getting to know the Twin Cities
The week of June 11, 2018, the Neurosurgery Department welcomed two new residents: Samuel Jones, MD; and Maxwell Tran, MD. Both bring a strong work ethic, research experience, and enthusiasm about the opportunities that the Residency Program at the U has to offer. “We are thrilled to have them here as members of the department,” said Matthew Hunt, MD, FRCS, Director of the U of M’s Residency Program. “It is exciting to see the start of their neurosurgical careers.”
University of Minnesota Medical School researchers collaborate in cutting-edge cell bioengineering and unique 3D-printing techniques
There are currently more than 285,000 people in the United States suffering from spinal cord injuries, and about 17,000 new spinal cord injuries each year. Engineers and medical researchers at the University of Minnesota have teamed up to create a 3D-printed device that could help some of those patients regain some function. “Right now, there aren’t any good, precise treatments for people with long-term spinal cord injuries,” said Ann Parr, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery and Stem Cell Institute at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
NeuroSafe 2018 wraps up strongly, demonstrates “clear commitment” to neurosurgical safety and quality
The second and last day of NeuroSafe 2018, presented by the U of M’s Department of Neurosurgery, was held, August 3, at the university’s McNamara Alumni Center. This unique symposium brought together neurosurgeons, scientists, residents and nursing professionals from throughout North America to learn the latest about improving neurosurgical quality and safety.
Day 1 of NeuroSafe 2018 delivers impressive lineup of neurosurgical quality and safety improvement topics
Neurosurgery Department Head Clark Chen, MD, PhD, kicked off the third annual NeuroSafe symposium, August 2, 2018, at the McNamara Alumni Center on the University of Minnesota campus. Neurosurgeons, scientists, residents and nursing professionals from throughout North America gathered to learn the latest about improving neurosurgical quality and safety.
2018 graduates grateful for the experience they gained, look forward to their next chapter
As they prepared for graduation on June 22, 2018, Chief Residents Amit Goyal, MD, and Akshay Gupte, MD, MPH, reflected on the seven years they spent as U of M neurosurgical residents. They gained experience at four sites: University of Minnesota Medical Center, Hennepin Healthcare, U of M Masonic Children’s Hospital, and the Minneapolis VA Healthcare System. They also provided patient care at the Clinics and Surgery Center on the U of M campus.
Annual Research Day showcases resident research skills and contributions to advancing patient care
Each year, the U of M’s Neurosurgery Department hosts a conference that highlights resident research interests and facilitates discussion about how research advances patient care. “Some of the major scientific breakthroughs that allow us to better help our patients were made by neurosurgeons,” noted Department Head Clark Chen, MD, PhD. “A notable example involves the use of corticosteroids to treat swelling caused by brain tumor. That discovery was made by a U of M neurosurgeon and has allowed us to care for our brain tumor patients in ways that we were never able to previously.
Monthly deep brain stimulation class helps answer potential candidates’ questions and manage their expectations
When patients with movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor or dystonia, get to the point where they’re considering deep brain stimulation (DBS) to help relieve their symptoms, the overall process can seem daunting. Two surgeries are required – one to implant the electrode in the brain and the other about a week later to implant the generator/battery under the skin beneath the collarbone. The patient must be awake for a portion of the first surgery, which can generate some anxiety. Even the multi-disciplinary DBS workup process can be intimidating.
Deep brain stimulation is an effective way to treat Parkinson’s symptoms
In the United States, Parkinson’s disease occurs in approximately 13 out of 100,000 people, and about 60,000 new cases are identified each year. It affects more than 1 million people in North America and more than 4 million people worldwide. “Parkinson’s disease is caused by the loss of dopamine-producing cells in the part of your brain that manages movement,” explained neurosurgeon and MnDRIVE Neuromodulation Scholar Michael C. Park, MD, PhD, U of M Department of Neurosurgery and Neurology. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter used as a signaler between neurons, some of which control movement. Its loss can result in symptoms such as tremors, slowness, stiffness, and abnormal gait. Park specializes in deep brain stimulation, a surgical procedure that helps reduce Parkinson’s symptoms.
Six faculty members listed on 2018 Top Doctors list
We are very proud to announce that six of our faculty members are listed on the Mpls.St.Paul Magazine 2018 Top Doctors list. The annual Top Doctors list is generated by physician peers from throughout the Twin Cities area. The rankings are determined by a survey sent to 5,000 licensed physicians in the 10-county metro area. Survey participants are asked to nominate one or more doctors, excluding themselves. The candidates who made the final list were evaluated on indicators of peer recognition, professional achievement, and disciplinary history. In addition, a blue-ribbon panel of physicians also reviewed each Top Doctors candidate. The magazine also conducted reputation-based research.