November 30, 2000

Neurosurgery Dept. Created at Weills

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Weill Cornell Medical Center of New York-Presbyterian Hospital recently expanded its neurosurgery division by creating a new Department of Neurosurgery. On Nov. 1, the Center appointed leading neurosurgeon Dr. Philip E. Stieg as Chairman of the Department and Neurosurgeon-in-Chief.

Previously, Stieg was associate professor of neurosurgery at Harvard Medical School and associate chief of neurosurgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. He will teach as professor of neurosurgery at Weill Medical College.

“I feel positively about Dr. Stieg’s appointment. He is an outstanding leader,” said Dr. Antonio M. Gotto, Jr., Dean of the College. “He has a strong background in clinical practice and research and is an excellent person to head the program.”

Under Stieg’s leadership, the College will take a new comprehensive approach to the management of neurosurgical disorders such as brain tumors, spinal cord disorders, stroke and functional diseases like Parkinson’s and movement disorders.

“Dr. Stieg has already made some outstanding recruitments — two young neurosurgeons in the fields of epilepsy and functional neurosurgery,” said Dr. Flint Beal, neurology, current chairman of the department of neurology, and neurologist-in-chief.

Stieg will work with the Department of Neurology and Neuroscience and the Division of Radiation-Oncology in the further research of neurological disorders. He plans to incorporate the use of advanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to accurately locate and treat brain tumors and vascular malformations.

With Stieg’s guidance, the faculty hopes Weill Cornell Medical Center will become a world leader in the surgical management of brain disorders. Stieg hopes to launch disease-focused groups to deliver treatment in collaboration with other departments of the medical center.

“Dr. Stieg is a very strong and academically-minded clinical neurosurgeon,” said Dr. Steven Goldman, neurology and neuroscience, and attending neurologist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. “[He] will greatly increase exposure and opportunities of neurosurgery.”

Stieg’s research interests lie in cerebral protection and restorative function, with initial studies focusing on understanding the mechanisms of injury in the brain and spinal cord after trauma. He is also interested in neural transplantation and neuronal regeneration after stroke.

For his work, Stieg has received many awards and honors in the past, including citations in “Who’s Who in Health and Medical Services” and “The Best Doctors in America.”

The Neurosurgery Department, created only after a broad search for a nationally renowned figure to direct it, is the latest in a series of divisions to be promoted to departmental status at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University. The Departments of Urology, Dermatology, and Cardiothoracic Surgery were established in 1993.

Archived article by Ritu Gupta