December 2019

Historian Corner

George H. Thompson, MD
SRS Historian

There have been several important activities involving the Historical Committee since my last report. Unfortunately most involve the extraordinary number of deaths of our members this year. There have also been noteworthy activities in our archives and the recently completed SRS Traveling Fellowship. These are discussed in greater detail below.

SRS Archives Update
The SRS Board of Directors meeting in Montréal approved funding for a short term SRS Archivist to work under Chris Crenner, PhD at the University of Kansas Medical Center. We are slowly, but steadily collecting a significant amount of important material that needs to be archived, preserved, maintained and made available for study. This position will work with the team at KUMC to properly store the materials that have been reviewed and sent by the Historian, as well as create a detailed, easily searchable, online catalog of the items stored in the Archives. This is an increasingly important task as SRS acquires more and more artifact and document donations from the membership (contact Ashtin Neuschaefer with questions on how to donate items). Recruitment for this position will begin soon.

Historical 2019 SRS Traveling Fellowship
The 2019 SRS Traveling Fellowship (August 24-September15, 2019) was just completed. It concluded at the annual meeting in Montreal. The fellows included Greg Mundis, MD (The Scripps Clinic, San Diego, CA), Addisu Mesfin, MD (University of Rochester,(Rochester, NY) and John Caridi, MD (Mount. Sinai Hospital, New York City, NY).  I was privileged to serve as their senior surgeon. Visits were arranged to 5 different major spine centers, 4 of which had never been part of the SRS traveling fellowship previously. These centers included the FOCOS Program (Accra, Ghana) with Oheneba Boachie-Adjei, MD, Dana Children’s Hospital (Tel Aviv, Israel) with Dror Ovadia, MD, Hacettepe University (Ankara, Turkey) with Muharrem Yazici, MD, Acibadem University (Istanbul, Turkey) with Ahmet Alanay, MD and Ganga Hospital, Coimbatore, India) with Shanmuganathan Rajaskaram, MD. Istanbul was the only center to have been visited previously. These programs demonstrated a wide range of both pediatric and adult spine deformities and unique methods of management. The academic aspects were excellent with presentations by both the traveling fellows and the five programs faculty. The social aspects of our visits developed friendships that should be beneficial to the fellows throughout their careers.


Chair: George H. Thompson Committee: Andrew G. King; Acke Ohlin (E); Jeffrey P. Mullin (C); Jonathan N. Sembrano (C); Alexander A. Theologis (C); Patricia N. Kostial (A); Matthew J. Mermer; Behrooz A. Akbarnia (E); Richard M. Schwend; Jay Shapiro, Historian Elect