SRS Newsletter
December 2011

Presidential Address

SRS president

I hope all of you in our great society have a happy holiday season, and have the opportunity this month to spend time relaxing with those who are close to you.

Let me take a moment to thank you for this opportunity to serve as your 41st Scoliosis Research Society President. This is a tremendous honor for me to have this chance to work with outstanding society leadership, and to make every effort to maximize this society’s effectiveness. With this year’s Presidential Line, Board of Directors, committee members, and outstanding administrative staff, SRS will continue to make great strides in fulfilling its mission statement, that being “to provide optimal care for all patients with spinal deformity.”

I want to personally thank our Immediate Past President Lawrence G. Lenke, MD for his work, leadership, and friendship over this past year. Dr. Lenke was extraordinary in his energy and vision and, as a result, moved our society forward. His globalization retreat in February provided clarity to the SRS’ goals for expanding our presence worldwide. A product of this meeting was the creation of the Globalization Committee with Dr. Lenke as chair, whose charge is to explore the benefits of regionalization of SRS, starting with Asia, Europe, and Latin America. During Dr. Lenke’s tenure, the society-owned journal Spine Deformity was established. With John E. Lonstein, MD as Editor-in-Chief, manuscript submissions will begin January 1, 2012, and the first volume for publication will be January 2013. However, a preliminary publication of Spine Deformity will be presented during the 47th Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois, USA and will include the presentations from the 2012 Pre-Meeting Course “Techniques for Optimizing Safety and Outcomes in Spinal Deformity Surgery” with Joseph H. Perra, MD as the course chair. Also under Dr. Lenke’s leadership, the Research, Education, and Outreach (REO) Fund was established. This new fund allows SRS members to gift directly to the society with society-wide acknowledgement (more on this later).  Dr. Lenke, a heartfelt “thank you” for the outstanding work you did this past year.

I welcome our newest members to the Board of Directors. These include Vice President Steven D. Glassman, MD; Directors-at-Large: Christopher I. Shaffrey, MD; David Marks, FRCS; and Suken Shah, MD; as well as Education Council Chair Daniel J. Sucato, MD, MS. Our current Board of Directors consists of a very talented mix of SRS members, all of whom have a keen interest in providing effective leadership for the SRS. Oheneba Boachie-Adjei, MD; George H. Thompson, MD; Steven M. Mardjetko, MD, FAAP; Serena S. Hu, MD; and J. Abbott Byrd III, MD recently completed their board responsibilities, and I thank them very much. All of these individuals will be missed for their wisdom and informative input.

In October, we held an extremely productive Cabinet Meeting in Dallas, Texas, USA and all of the committee Chairs were in attendance. We had the opportunity to go through detailed committee charges and expectations for the upcoming year, a useful exercise as we expect much synergistic work between committees that have similar duties. One day prior to the Cabinet Meeting, we held a seminar in healthcare economics. Covance, a company with expertise in the field, presented a Medical Decision Modeling seminar on the development of appropriate use criteria. Both of these topics are of significant importance to our society today as we increasingly face the issues of determining optimal allocation of healthcare resources within a budget. SRS will become more engaged in the development of this Medical Modeling Concept, as we think it will prove useful to us in responding to new healthcare policies and challenges.

Let me take a moment here to describe the REO Fund in greater detail. Before the REO Fund, our international and neurosurgical members lacked an appropriate avenue to give financially to SRS, as the Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF) is oriented primarily toward orthopaedic surgeons residing within the USA. The REO Fund provides an avenue for all members to give directly to SRS by creating two different recognition tracks, International and US. Within these two tracks there are several levels of recognition based on the amount of donations contributed. These levels are Contributory, Sustaining, Benefactor, Presidents, Founders, and Legends. For further information on the REO Fund, please go to the SRS website and look under the “Support” tab at the top of the homepage. Our goal is to provide additional resources to fund the ever-increasing research grant proposals, educational opportunities, and outreach programs. As we near the end of the 2011 calendar year, I ask all of you to consider making a donation to SRS through the REO Fund. For those of you who are inclined to donate to OREF, in which half of that donation goes directly to the SRS, please do so. Either one of these funds will greatly benefit our society now, and in the future.

Through the work of our CME Committee, Chairman Glenn R. Rechtine, II, MD and our SRS administrative staff, our application to become an accredited Continuing Medical Education provider has been submitted to the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME). Should we be successful in this endeavor, we will have opportunities to increase our CME offerings over time. We will find out the results of our application by July 2012. Dr. Rechtine, Tressa Goulding, CAE, CMP, Courtney Kissinger and her staff, have worked endlessly to create a strong application. We are optimistic for a successful outcome.

Following a discussion at the October SRS Cabinet Meeting, the Board of Directors voted to make the E-Text available to everyone who visits our website. Not only does this resource provide valuable educational opportunities to members, it has great potential for residents and fellows in training, international spine surgeons, and many ancillary personnel. This has already increased the traffic to our website. Please pass this information on to all of your residents and fellows.

Society-wide interest in spine research continues to grow as evidenced by the 40 grant proposals submitted during the fall cycle. The Research Grants Committee, with John M. Flynn, MD as Chair, is beginning its review process. In addition, preliminary grant applications for the Directed Research Project, “Pediatric Quality, Safety and Long-term Outcomes” were due by December 1. The Directed Research Taskforce will review these and encourage further development of promising proposals.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons’ (AAOS) Board of Specialty Societies (BOS) has requested all sub-specialty orthopaedic societies to become involved with the development of Performance Improvement Modules (PIMs). These PIMs will eventually replace Part 4 of Maintenance of Certification (MOC). The SRS is developing two modules; one for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis and the other for adult scoliosis. Members of the Education Committee with Mark B. Dekotowski, MD and John R. Dimar, II, MD as co-chairs are underway with this task.

This month, two SRS Worldwide Conferences are being held, in Israel and Malaysia. The Worldwide Conference Committee with, Ahmet Alanay, MD as chair, has been very busy developing future courses and, in doing so, has made the SRS the leader among spine societies for worldwide education. At this time, we are anticipating having 2012 worldwide courses in India, Vietnam, Netherlands, and Israel. However, other countries have expressed interest in hosting additional courses in 2012.

These are but a few of the activities underway in 2011-2012 for the Scoliosis Research Society. All of the committees have important tasks, and are led by energetic motivated chairs. I am excited to work with everyone as we face new challenges that lie ahead for our society, enhance the educational opportunities worldwide, financially build our organization, and increase our membership. This continues to be a very exciting time for the Scoliosis Research Society. Many great things are forthcoming.

I sincerely thank all of our members involved in leading efforts for this society. There is always room for more interested members who wish to participate in committee work, and I encourage everyone to give this strong consideration. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to lead SRS throughout the 2011-2012 year. All of us on the Presidential Line: President-Elect Kamal N. Ibrahim, MD, FRCS(C), MA; Vice President Steven D. Glassman, MD; and Immediate-Past President Lawrence G. Lenke, MD; and I wish you the happiest of times during this holiday season.

My best to you,

B. Stephens Richards, III, MD
2011-2012 President

Obituary: Morey S. Moreland, MD
March 20, 1939 – October 2, 2011

Prepared for the Scoliosis Research Society by George H. Thompson, MD

The Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) has lost one of its Emeritus Members.  Morey S. Moreland, MD passed away on October 2, 2011, from sepsis secondary to neutropenia from treatment of recently diagnosed leukemia.  A bone marrow transplant was scheduled which would have given him a reasonable chance for a cure.  He became an SRS member in 1983 and an Emeritus Member in 2008. 

Dr. Moreland received his Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Wyoming in 1961 and his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in 1965.  After his internship and a year of general surgery residency at the same institution, he entered the United States Navy as a flight surgeon.  Three years later, he began his orthopaedic residency at the University of Vermont.  His last year of training was as the Lord Nuffield Scholar (senior registrar) in Orthopaedics at Oxford University in England. Dr. Moreland then joined the orthopaedic faculty at the University of Vermont.  In 1981-1982 he was a visiting fellow at the Children’s Hospital Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.  In 1989, Dr. Moreland became the inaugural William F. and Jean W. Donaldson, Professor of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and held this Endowed Chair until 2009.  Between 1989 and 1998, he was the Chief of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery at that facility.  From 2003 to 2009, he was the Executive Vice Chair for Research where he successfully coordinated the research efforts of the department.  Most recently, Dr. Moreland was the department’s Senior Vice Chairman. 

Dr. Moreland was an expert on spinal deformities in children and was very involved in Moiré topography.  During his academic career, he published 60 peer-reviewed publications mostly dealing with spinal deformity, eight chapters in textbooks and delivered numerous national and international lectures.  He was a very active member of SRS as well as the Orthopaedic Research Society (ORS).  He was also an active member of the American Orthopaedic Association (AOA), the Pediatric Society of North America (POSNA), the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), the Pediatric Orthopaedic Think Tank (IPOTT), Société Internationale de Chirurgie Orthopédique et de Traumatologie (SICOT), and the International Research Society of Spinal Deformities of which he was President from 1999 to2001.  He also was President of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, Medical Staff from 1999-2001. 

Dr. Moreland is survived by his wife of 48 years, Marilyn Danielson Moreland, and their daughter, Michelle of Santa Fe, New Mexico.  For the past ten years he and his wife participated in Christian medical missions to Honduras under the direction of CURE, International.  They were also avid sailors and skiers. He was preceded in death by his son, Michael.  He was also survived by his sister, Bambi Sturbois and her husband of Taos, New Mexico.  He was a special friend to many members of SRS and will be missed. 

A memorial service was held at the Trinity Cathedral in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on Friday, October 7.  The Moreland Family has asked that donations be sent to CURE, International (Honduras), 701 Bosler Ave., Lemoyne, PA  17043 or the University of Pittsburgh, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, 3471 Fifth Ave., Suite 1011, Pittsburgh, PA  15213 for the Morey S. Moreland, MD, Stem Cell Research Center Memorial Fund. 

Finance Council Update

Paul D. Sponseller, MD
Finance Council Chair

The Finance Council initiated the Research, Education and Outreach (REO) Fund as of October 1, 2011. The money is being invested in the Rockefeller Balanced Fund. This fund was jump-started with the use of $1.4 million from certificate of deposits (CDs) in the Research Fund which were due to mature, and an additional $57,000 in contributions from new Presidential Level donors. The purpose of the REO Fund will be to increase the earning power of our long-term reserves used to support research and other missions. The REO Fund will be offering a return of 4% of its balance for these purposes in 2013.

We made this transition at a relatively fortunate time, during a low point in the equity market cycle! This resulted in an immediate increase in assets as the equity market soared 10% over the next two weeks. We understand there will be swings in the market fund over the years and we have a long-term perspective. An additional $300,000 was transferred into the fund on December 1, 2011. A final planned contribution will occur at the end of the calendar year with maturation of a $250,000 CD.

The Finance Council is also happy to report that the 2011 Annual Meeting made a profit, revenues over expenses of over $300,000, which is in line with previous years. This will allow us to have discretionary money for the SRS mission even though the IMAST incurred a slight loss. The Long Range Planning Committee takes care to plan meetings so that each year a meeting in a more expensive location will be paired with a meeting in an inexpensive location, which is usually in North America. Also we are happy to report that all of our Worldwide Conferences have made a profit, thanks to our staff’s economical approach and to the corporate supporters.

The budget cycle for 2012 is underway with the budget being prepared currently and will be reviewed by the Presidential Line at the SRS headquarters on January 16. It will then be approved by the Board of Directors soon afterward. The SRS Presidential Line tries to be good stewards of your money so it can be used for research grants, educational venues and for new issues such as the directed research programs: AOSpine Scoli-Risk Study, and Pediatric Outcomes Study.

If you have any comments or suggestions about the financial side of your society please feel free to email me at

Council Chair: Paul D. Sponseller, MD; Council Members: Steven M. Mardjetko, MD; Lawrence G. Lenke, MD.

Meeting Locations: IMAST and Annual Meeting

Lawrence G. Lenke, MD
Long Range Planning Committee Chair

The Long Range Planning Committee (LRPC) has been busy the past six months solidifying two additional locations for upcoming International Meeting on Advanced Spine Techniques (IMAST) meetings. The Past Chair of this Committee, Past-President Richard E. McCarthy, MD, along with Ms. Tressa Goulding, CAE, CMP, spent a great deal of time in Spain visiting multiple outstanding venues in order to determine the location for the 2014 IMAST meeting, ultimately recommending Valencia as the destination. Also, in August of this year, Meetings Director Megan Kelley and I toured two potential cities in Canada for hosting the 2013 IMAST meeting, ultimately recommending Vancouver. I am pleased to report that both of these sites were unanimously approved by the LRPC and subsequently the Board of Directors. The LRPC is confident these two locations will provide outstanding venues for these future IMAST meetings.

Since the locations for the Annual Meeting are decided until our 50th Anniversary meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA in 2015, the committee this coming year will focus on site selection for the 2015 IMAST meeting, thus "catching up" to have all upcoming Annual Meeting and IMAST meetings selected through 2015. We encourage members to nominate cities for consideration to be a host for the 2015 IMAST meeting. You can do this by contacting the SRS office or by visiting our website for an application form. I would like to thank all committee members and especially Ms. Goulding and Ms. Kelley for all of their expertise regarding these important decisions on determining the location of the SRS "Crown Jewel" meetings.

Future SRS Meetings:

2012 Annual Meeting: Chicago, Illinois, USA
IMAST: Istanbul, Turkey
2013 Annual Meeting: Lyon, France
IMAST: Vancouver, Canada
2014 Annual Meeting: Anchorage, Alaska, USA
IMAST: Valencia, Spain
2015 Annual Meeting: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Chair: Lawrence G. Lenke, MD Committee Members: Richard E. McCarthy, MD; Kenneth J. Paonessa, MD; Christopher I. Shaffrey, MD; B. Stephens Richards, III, MD; Ahmet Alanay, MD.

E-Text: Available for Everyone

Praveen Mummaneni, MD
E-Text Committee Chair

The SRS E-Text is now available online through This electronic textbook is now free of charge to both SRS members and nonmembers as a "go anywhere, anytime" online resource covering a broad array of spinal deformity topics. Currently, 43 chapters, many with accompanying surgical videos from master surgeons, are available online. More chapters and videos will be added in the upcoming months. The E-Text can be accessed online using any device with an internet connection. We encourage users to log in and review the latest up-to-date information on a variety of spinal deformity topics. Please be sure to let your residents and fellows know about the E-Text becoming available for their use!

Chair: Praveen Mummaneni, MD Committee Members: James W. Ogilvie, MD; Adrian C. Gardner, FRCS; Ronald A. Lehman Jr., MD; Todd J. Albert, MD; John P. Dormans, MD; Lawrence G. Lenke, MD, Noriaki Kawakami, MD; Fernando Emilio Silva, MD.

Annual Meeting Program Changes

Daniel J. Sucato, MD
Program Committee Chair

The abstract submission process is now open on the website. Please see the “Call for Abstract” link on the homepage of the website. Abstract submissions are due February 1, 2012 for the 47th Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois, USA.

The Program Committee has met and has decided to make three changes to the meeting this year. The first will be to involve the membership in the voting for the Hibbs Clinical and Basic Science Awards at the time of their podium presentations via a smartphone app or paper ballot. The podium presentations of the finalists for the Hibbs Awards will be grouped at the Annual Meeting to allow the audience to view them in one session and to vote immediately following that session. The second change will be to add a single concurrent session to Friday morning to allow more podium presentations to be given at the Annual Meeting. The number and quality of abstracts submitted to the Annual Meeting has continued to increase. For example, last year, there was a total of 1,100 abstracts submitted with 850 designated by authors to be considered for the Annual Meeting. The average score for those abstracts accepted for these podium presentations was 3.21 (possible score 1-best to 10-worst) with the highest score for a podium presentation that was accepted of 4.0. There were 145 abstracts with a score of 4.0 or less who were not selected for the meeting. The concurrent session will allow close to 20 additional abstracts to be presented. Finally, due to the success of the case presentation sessions last year, they will be repeated this year for those who want to present a case or small number of cases (limit of five or fewer patients) on an interesting topic. Although any category of interesting case is allowed, we will place an emphasis on those presentations focusing on the topics of “surgical site infections” and “neurologic deficits.”

Chair: Daniel J. Sucato, MD Committee Members: Laurel C. Blakemore, MD; Yutaka Sasao, MD; R. Haluk Berk, MD; William F. Donaldson III, MD; Glenn R. Rechtine II, MD; Daniel W. Green, MD; Timothy S. Oswald, MD; Suken A. Shah, MD; Stanley S. Lee, MD; John Thometz, MD; James O. Sanders, MD.

Awards and Scholarship Announcements

Stephen J. Lewis, MD
Awards and Scholarship Committee Chair

On behalf of the Awards and Scholarship committee, we are pleased to announce the winners of the 2011 year’s Scoliosis Research Society Awards.

SRS Lifetime Achievement Awards
It was with great pleasure that we awarded Ronald L. DeWald, MD and Denis S. Drummond, MD with the SRS Lifetime Achievement Awards for their outstanding contributions to both the SRS and spinal deformity surgery. Their global and local impact on the spine community especially in their role as teachers, were well recognized by the nominees. Drs. Dewald and Drummond’s numerous accomplishments were highlighted at the Annual Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, USA and their legacy in the spine world has been well established.

Walter P. Blount Humanitarian Award
James W. Ogilvie, MD was honored with the Walter P. Blount Humanitarian Award for his generous contributions of his time and skills in China and Malaysia. He has traveled annually both treating and training the local community in providing current treatments for very complex deformities.

Edgar Dawson Award
Jacob M. Buchowski, MD was awarded the Edgar Dawson Traveling Fellowship for 2011. Dr. Buchowski was a well-deserved recipient of this award and was hosted for his travels at the Spine Center of the University of California, San Francisco.

Global Outreach Program Educational Scholarship
Drs. K. Narayana Acharya, Anne Kathleen Ganal-Antonio, and Xin-Feng Li received the Global Outreach Program (GOP) Educational Scholarships to attend the IMAST meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark. Dr. Nariman Abol Oyoun received the award to attend the SRS Annual Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, USA. All were very worthy recipients and enjoyed the educational experience they were provided.

Global Outreach Program Visiting Fellowship
Drs. Mirza Biscevic and Bhavuk Garg were the recipients of the GOP Visiting Fellowship. Each traveled to a host site for a three-week observational visit.

Medtronic SRS Traveling Fellows
The winners of the 2011 Medtronic Traveling Fellows were Ronald A. Lehman, Jr., MD; Khaled Kebaish, MD and Jean-Marc Mac-Thiong, MD, PhD. They were chaperoned by Harry L. Shufflebarger, MD who organized an educational travel experience through Europe.

Depuy Traveling Fellows
The committee has selected the upcoming Depuy SRS Traveling Fellows for 2012. The successful candidates for 2012 include Srinivasa Vidyadhara, MS, DNB, FNB, from India; Ian J. Harding, FRCS, from England; and Elias C. Papadopoulos, MD, from Greece. An excellent program for them in the United States will include visits to Philadelphia, St. Louis, and Dallas, before concluding their travels at centers in Chicago prior to the SRS Annual Meeting.

Committee Updates

The Eduardo Luque Award
The committee is pleased to announce a new award for 2012. The Eduardo Luque Award will be awarded annually to an orthopaedic or neurosurgical trained spine surgeon under the age of 45, who has completed a spine fellowship, and is in active clinical practice with a focus in spinal deformity. Eligible candidates must be from Mexico, Central America or South America. The successful candidate will be chosen by appropriate Latin American spine societies. The award winner will be able to choose between attending an SRS meeting (the Annual Meeting or the IMAST), or a two-week visit to an SRS-approved host site focusing on spinal deformity. A special thank you to Albert E. Sanders, MD; James O. Sanders, MD; Charles F. Heinig, MD; Carlos A. Tello, MD; B. Stephen Richards, III, MD and Cydni Chapman for getting this award off the ground.

Changes to Award Eligibility
The committee has approved eligibility changes to the Edgar Dawson and the SRS Traveling Fellowships. Eligible candidates can now be either Candidate or Active SRS Members under the age of 45. Similarly, the age criterion has been increased to less than 45 years of age for the GOP Educational Scholarship and Visiting Fellowship.

The Awards Committee will provide a simplified summary of all awards that include a brief description of the awards, eligibility criteria, application deadlines, notification dates, and links to the appropriate application forms. A standardized grading system has been created for each award. The application forms will be structured to correspond with the standardized grading sheets.

The committee members have been pleased to be involved with the prestigious SRS awards and would like to congratulate the 2011 award recipients.

Committee Chair: Stephen J. Lewis, MD Committee Members: Kenneth J. Paonessa, MDl; Daniel J. Sucato, MD, MS; John M. Flynn, MD; Jahangir K. Asghar, MD; Sean Molloy, MBBS, MSc, FRCS, DC; Yongjung J. Kim, MD; Preston J. Phillips, MD; Lawrence L. Haber, MD; Hubert Labelle, MD; Hilali H. Noordeen, FRCS; David M. Montgomery, MD; Avraam Ploumis, MD, PhD; John M. Wattenbarger, MD.

Education Committee Report

Mark B. Dekutoski, MD and John R. Dimar, II, MD
Education Committee Chairs

The 2011-12 Education Committee activities have benefitted significantly from the legacy leadership of the Past Chair Joseph H. Perra, MD and past Education Council Chair Steven D. Glassman, MD. With the active leadership and guidance of President B. Steven Richards, III, MD and Education Council Chair Daniel J. Sucato, MD, the direction for the committee activities is being shaped by Co-Chairs John R. Dimar, MD and Mark B. Dekutoski, MD.

Developing the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) Federation of Spine Associations (FOSA) program has provided a window for highlighting the SRS initiative in comparative effectiveness research. The focus of the symposia will be on the application of Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC) methodology as it applies to adult scoliosis treatment methods. The AUC initiative has been headed by David W. Polly, MD and was a focus of the SRS Cabinet Meeting this past October.

The Education Committee will also be presenting a Lunchtime Symposium at FOSA on physician-directed use of biologics. This will be a presentation of updated evidence based review data on dose effect and complications. Publication of this systematic review is planned.

The committee is developing the 2012 Pre-Meeting Course around the theme of the impact of emerging technologies over the past decade. The interest is in presenting an objective analysis from early promise to patient care impact. This will highlight pediatric and adult technologies such as VEPTR, Biologics, less invasive technologies, etc.

A new and exciting task is the development of AAOS performance improvement modules. Under direction of Dr. Richards, the Committee is currently developing two modules on pediatric and adult scoliosis. The committee chairs are heading this effort in coordination with the AAOS guidelines and Presidential Line leadership.

The Education Committee is also furthering collaborative educational activities with other spine societies. In 2011, the joint North American Spine Society (NASS)/SRS Deformity Course was oversold. This course was co-directed by Lawrence G. Lenke, MD and Mark B. Dekutoski, MD and will be offered again in 2012. Shared opportunities with the Société Internationale de Chirurgie Orthopédique et de Traumatologie (SICOT), College of Neurological Surgeons (CNS), and American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) are being explored and active inclusion of SRS leadership in the AOSpine knowledge forum has been generated by Dr. Lenke's leadership in the model collaboration of the Scoli-Risk Study and deformity education.

Education Committee members welcome feedback regarding development of symposia and other educational offerings.

Co-Chairs: Mark B. Dekutoski, MD; John R. Dimar, II, MD; Committee Members: Joseph H. Perra, MD; Daniel J. Sucato, MD, MS; Brian Hsu, MD; Adam L. Wollowick, MD; Lukas P. Zebala, MD; Eric T. Jones, MD; Glenn R. Rechtine, II, MD; Paul D. Sponseller, MD; Lori A. Karol, MD; Daniel W. Green, MD, FACS, MS; Sigurd H. Berven, MD; John C. France, MD; Kit M. Song, MD, MHA.

New Evidence Based Medicine Committee

James O. Sanders, MD
Evidence Based Medicine Committee Chair

The Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) has developed a new committee this year, the Evidence Based Medicine (EBM) Committee, charged with the task of developing an infrastructure within SRS to promote and develop evidence based products such as systematic reviews, clinical practice guidelines, and appropriate use criteria among others.

For 2011-12, the group has three major goals:

  1. To become educated in EBM. We are grateful North American Spine Society (NASS) has opened up their education program to the members of the committee who will all be taking the course this year.
  2. To develop a systematic review on juvenile and adolescent spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis.
  3. To identify knowledge gaps in juvenile and adolescent spondylolysis which are important topics for future research and provide these to the Board of Directors and the Directed Research Taskforce for future research priorities.
  4. As the infrastructure becomes established, we hope to provide SRS with the skills necessary to firmly position themselves in the modern EBM world.

    Committee Chair: James O. Sanders, MD Committee Members: David W. Polly, MD; Steven D. Glassman, MD; Jacob M. Buchowski, MD; Charles H. Crawford, III, MD; Justin S. Smith, MD; Douglas C. Burton, MD; Serena S. Hu, MD; Baron S. Lonner, MD.

Fellowship Committee Report

Carlos Tello, MD
Fellowship Committee Chair

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your continued interest and dedication to this wonderful spine society. Although meeting attendance is a membership requirement, there are many members who attend above and beyond what is required. There is no doubt that the Annual Meeting or IMAST are like lighthouses attracting hundreds of spine surgeons who have a strong desire to learn, discuss and present papers, while sharing their personal experiences with colleagues from around the world. This, my friends, is an invaluable membership benefit that motivates us “to foster the optimal care of all patients with spinal deformities.”

In the coming year, the Fellowship Committee will work with the Globalization, Public Relations and the World Wide Conference Committees to increase awareness of SRS globally and to assist with membership recruitment efforts to attract qualified potential candidates.

Please continue to read further for important membership news and reminders.

New Candidate Requirement:
The Fellowship Committee and the Board of Directors have added a new Candidate Member requirement. Beginning with the January 1, 2012 membership group, all Candidate members will be required to serve on two committees during their five year Candidate term. This will serve as a mentorship opportunity as well as an opportunity to increase your SRS network!

Candidate Members Applying for Active Membership:
All Candidate Members seeking to advance to Active status are required to submit an 11 month case list of all patients treated. Applicants must include non-operative patients and cases in their case list and failure to do so will prevent a Candidate Member from becoming an Active Member. Please note that the 11-month case list is different from required the annual online M&M report.

Membership Dues:
An e-mail notice to pay your 2012 Membership dues was sent on November 30, 2011. Please pay dues before December 31, 2011.

To pay your membership dues by credit card or to print an invoice, please log in to the Members-Only section of the SRS website Under “Member Resources” click “Pay Dues” which is the fourth item listed. Please fax or mail your dues payment with an invoice to the SRS office. Only checks drawn on US banks will be accepted for payment.

If you have forgotten your password, you must reset it here: Forgot your password?. The SRS office does not have access to your passwords.

Dues paid to SRS are not deductible as a charitable contribution but may be deductible as a business expense. The SRS tax ID number is # 23-7181863.

Morbidity and Mortality (M&M) Reminder:
The 2011 M&M reports are due April 1, 2012. The site for the 2012 reporting year will open January 1, 2012.

This is an annual requirement for both Candidate and Active Members (surgeons). Active Members (surgeons) who did not submit their 2010 M&M report will be assessed $300 with their 2012 dues. The proceeds will go toward the Research Education and Outreach (REO) Fund for continued M&M-related research.

SRS considers M&M reporting a valuable part of our membership and encourages submissions!

Fast Track to Active Membership Reminder:
If you know of a senior spine surgeon who has greatly contributed to the spine world and is interested in membership, please have them contact Nilda Toro, Membership Manager, to verify the requirements below. The fast track option will bypass the five-year Candidate period.

Must be verified by SRS office before an application is released:

  • 15 years or more in spine deformity practice
  • Full Professorship or equivalency
    • Time spent in membership/training is not calculated
  • A clinical practice which includes at least 20% spinal deformity
  • Three abstracts submitted to the SRS Annual Meeting or IMAST, or one accepted, within five years of application date
  • Have attended at least two SRS meetings, one must be an Annual Meeting, and the other may be an International Meeting on Advance Spine Techniques (IMAST), within five years of application date

A complete fast track submission includes:

  • One copy of the completed fast track application. Provided by SRS office only
  • One copy of your current Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Five letters of recommendation from current Active SRS members or Emeritus (previously Active) SRS members
    • One of the five letters may be from the president of your local spine deformity society (non-SRS member is acceptable)
    • Letters may be sent directly to the SRS office
  • A non-refundable $100 (USD) application fee (discount for low income countries available)
  • One copy of a current photo (you may either send a hard copy with the application or email an electronic copy to

Active Member responsibilities:

  • Attend, one meeting every three consecutive years and one SRS Annual Meeting at least every five consecutive years
  • Submit yearly on-line Morbidity & Mortality reports (surgeons) or contribute to the research fund of a $300 assessment
  • Pay annual membership dues on the calendar year, of $500 USD or World Bank Economy rate
    *Only Active Members may vote and hold elected offices within SRS

Membership Benefits: Special access to the “Member’s Only” section of our website to view past meeting sessions, full access to the online E-Text book that covers many interesting and helpful topics, our amazing historical archives, quarterly on-line newsletter, Global Outreach Lecture Depository, leadership opportunities through committee involvement, educational opportunities through small group tutorials, be listed on our physician locator, reduced meeting registration for the Annual Meetings & International Meeting on Advance Spine Techniques (IMAST), and network with the premier spine surgeons from around the world.

Application deadlines are December 1 and June 30, every year. The fast track option will expire June 30, 2014.

Chair: Carlos A. Tello, MD Committee Members: Serena S. Hu, MD; Laurel C. Blakemore, MD; Hilali H. Nordeen, FRCS; Douglas C. Burton, MD.

Collaboration with the Chinese Orthopedic Association (COA)

Lawrence G. Lenke, MD
Globalization Committee Chair

The Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) recently co-sponsored a Spinal Deformity Course in Beijing, China on December 1 and 2, in association with the 6th annual Chinese Orthopedic Association (COA) meeting. Under the presidency of SRS Active Member, Professor Wang Yan, the COA has rapidly become one of the largest orthopedic meetings in the world with over 15,000 attendees.

The Spinal Deformity Course was co-chaired by Qiu Yong, MD of Nanjing, China; Noriaki Kawakami, MD of Nagoya, Japan and SRS Immediate Past President Lawrence G. Lenke, MD. The course was well-attended, with an estimated maximum attendance of 300.

Faculty included the entire SRS Presidential Line, President, B. Stephens Richards III, MD; President-Elect, Kamal N. Ibrahim, MD, FRCS(C), MA; and Vice President Steven D. Glassman, MD, as well as Kenneth MC Cheung, MD (who organized the free paper presentation sessions); Cody Bunger, MD, DMSc; and a special guest lecture on the History of Spinal Osteotomies by Professor John Leong, DSc, FRCS, MCAS, OBE, JP from Hong Kong, which will be available on the SRS website in the Historians Corner for review.

Sessions included talks, panel discussions and debates on the topics of Early Onset Scoliosis, Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (including an outstanding lecture by B. Stephens Richards, III, MD on the past, present and future treatment of AIS), Adult Degenerative and Idiopathic Scoliosis, Spinal Osteotomies including Vertebral Column Resections (VCRs), and spinal tumors. Approximately 30 free papers were presented, primarily from Chinese and Japanese authors, and three lunchtime workshops presented three different methods for derotation of thoracic scoliosis. Overall, it was an outstanding course with great early feedback from the attendees. SRS would like to thank the COA, especially President Wang Yan, MD, for partnering on this terrific spinal deformity course.

Chair: Lawrence G. Lenke, MD Committee Members: Noriaki Kawakami, MD, Asia Pacific Co-Chair; Hee-Kit Wong, MD, Asia Pacific Co-Chair; David S. Marks, FRCS, Europe Chair; Carlos A. Tello, MD, Latin America Co-Chair; Osmar Avanzi, MD, Latin America Co-Chair; Oheneba Boachie-Adjei, MD, ex-officio; Kenneth M C Cheung, MD, ex-officio.

Non-Operative Committee Update

Nigel J. Price, MD and John G. Thometz, MD
Non-Operative Committee Chair and Past Chair

The Non-Operative Committee has worked to emphasize the importance of non-operative management within the treatment protocols of the Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) and endeavored to increase patient education by compiling a list of frequently-asked questions (FAQs) with appropriate responses.

The role of Scoliscore™, at this point is an area of common concern and the committee prepared a position paper based on a review of the published data up to this point. Videos on patient experience with bracing and scoliosis support groups are being prepared. Discussions have been undertaken with other committee chairs including those of Advocacy and Public Policy and Patient Education, again to emphasize the importance of non-operative management.

Work is being undertaken to prepare a Half Day Course for the 47th Annual Meeting including updating bracing protocols in both the United States and Europe. Discussions were also undertaken regarding the appropriate role of social media in the education of our patients. Collaborative efforts are underway with the International Society on Scoliosis Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Treatment (SOSORT) membership regarding methodologies for the conservative care of patients with scoliosis.

B. Stephens Richards, III, MD and Nigel J. Price, MD, will be participating in panel discussions at the next SOSORT meeting in Milan, Italy in May of 2012.

Chair: Nigel J. Price, MD Committee Members: John G. Thometz, MD; Martin Gehrchen, MD; Samuel A. Joseph, Jr., MD; Paul D. Sponseller, MD; Michael C. Ain, MD; Timothy S. Oswald, MD; Michael T. Hresko, MD; Carlos A. Tello, MD.

Worldwide Conference Update and a Glance into Future Meetings

Ahmet Alanay, MD
Worldwide Conference Committee Chair

The Worldwide Conference (WWC) Committee held four courses during the final months of 2011. The Prague WWC Course September 6 through the 9 was held in conjunction with the SICOT Tri-Annual Meeting. This course attracted many participants from all around the world.

The WWC in Buenos Aires on October 12-13 took place as a pre-meeting course in conjunction with the Socieded Ibero Latinoamerica de Columna (SILACO) Bi-Annual Meeting. This was a course that included didactic sessions, panel discussions, and workshops on spinal deformity. In addition, for the first time, cases presentations obtained in advance from the audience and discussed by the faculty were part of the program. This very successful program resulted in a packed auditorium where world-renowned faculty discussed a broad variety of pediatric and adult deformity topics. Also, the social activities provided the participants with some unforgettable memories of this lovely city.

The course in Beijing on December 1-4 was held in conjunction with the Chinese Orthopaedic Association (COA) and was attended by a large number of orthopaedic surgeons. During this pre-meeting course, participants heard from some of the world’s leading experts on spinal deformities.

Finally, our last WWC of 2011 was December 8-10 in the beautiful city of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This meeting was in conjunction with the Malaysian Spine Society (MSS) and featured six international faculty. The meeting was well-attended with 260 registered doctors and the lecture hall full late into the afternoon. The social program was also charming and the Congress Dinner had a show of local dance which impressed the participants. For the first time, the WWC included a forum for meeting patients, with nearly 60 Malaysian patients and their families attending. The aim of this forum was to introduce the Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) and its missions to patients and to educate them through lectures on deformity given by local experts and by the SRS President B. Stephen Richards, III. The lectures were followed by Question and Answer sessions, asked by patients, and answered by local doctors, and Dr. Richards. The success of this patient forum has motivated the WWC Committee to do the same during next year’s WWC events.

We are happy to see the increasing worldwide interest in having WWC meetings in conjunction with local spine meetings. This growing interest has pushed us to increase the number of WWC meetings from two to four this coming year. WWC program and sites during 2012 will include India, in conjunction with ASICON in February; Amsterdam, Netherlands, during Spine week, May 28 – June 1; Tel Aviv, Israel, in conjunction with the Israel Orthopaedic Association, (IOS) October 17-19; and finally Saigon, Vietnam, in conjunction with the Vietnam Orthopaedic Association (VOA) during December. The courses in the Netherlands, Israel, and Vietnam are open for volunteer faculty. I would kindly ask those who would like to volunteer as faculty to apply via the SRS Meetings web page or to communicate directly with me via my e-mail -

Finally, I would like to thank all co-chairs and local and international faculty of the 2011 courses, as well as the members of WWC Committee for their time and great support for these organizations. I would also like to thank our corporate supporters for their invaluable support in organizing these meetings.

Committee Chair: Ahmet Alanay, MD Committee Members: Kamal N. Ibrahim, MD, FRCS(C), MA; Kenneth J. Paonessa, MD; Mark B. Dekutoski, MD; John R. Dimar, MD; Mohammad El-Sharkawai, MD; Hassan Serhan, MD; Christopher L. Hamill, MD; Peter F. Sturm, MD; Muharrem Yazici, MD; Munish C. Gupta, MD; Youssry M.K. El- Hawary, MD; Scott D. Hodges, MD; David H. Clements, MD; Marinus De Kleuver, MD, PhD; Mark Weidenbaum, MD.

2011 Corporate Supporters

Double Diamond Level Support

Depuy Spine K2M Medtronic

Diamond Level Support


Platinum Level Support

Synthes Spine

Gold Level Support


Globus Medical


Silver Level Support

Nuvasive Zimmer Spine  

Bronze Level Support

Ackermann Medical GmbH & Co. KG
Alphatec Spine, Inc.
Biomet Spine
Biospace Med
Ellipse Technologies, Inc.
Elsevier Canada
Exactech, Iinc.
FzioMed, Inc.
Lippencott Williams& Wilkins
NuTech Medical
Orthofix, Inc.
Paradigm Spine
Showa Ika
Spineguard, Inc.
Spine View
Vexim SAS

Sponsors In-Kind

DePuy Spine SpineCraft  

Strategic Plan

GOAL 1. Funding: The Scoliosis Research Society will have a funding base large and diversified enough to ensure financial independence in funding research and sound fiscal operating policies.

GOAL 2. Research: The Scoliosis Research Society will be the global source of research on spinal deformities

GOAL 3. Education: The Scoliosis Research Society will be the global source of education on spinal deformities

GOAL 4. Globalism: Through its members and programs, the Scoliosis Research Society will improve spinal deformity care globally

GOAL 5. Advocacy: The Scoliosis Research Society will be recognized as the leading resource for information and public policy on spinal deformities.

GOAL 6. Society Leadership: The Scoliosis Research Society will operate in a manner consistent with its stature as the pre-eminent spinal deformity society.

Vision Statement

The SRS will increase its recognition domestically and internationally as the leading source of information and knowledge on spinal disorders affecting all patients, regardless of age.