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May 19, 1989

Neurological Surgery

JAMA. 1989;261(19):2857-2858. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420190133042

The pace of progress in medicine generally and in neurosurgery specifically is quickening. New technologies, innovative diagnostic procedures, improved treatment modalities, and refined surgical techniques continue to appear with regularity. Computed tomographic scans, magnetic resonance imaging, microsurgery, laser applications, transsphenoidal microsurgery, medical therapies for pituitary tumors, endovascular therapy, brain implants, spine surgical techniques, stereotaxic radiosurgery—these and many other developments have contributed to the evolving and effective practice of neurosurgery today.

Innovation and expansion will no doubt be ongoing for some time. But for the present, there are a few areas in which there has been considerable recent progress and that impact particularly on the practice of neurosurgery. Those that are covered in this article have made important inroads; the order in which they are presented is arbitrary.

Increasingly sophisticated surgical techniques, better understanding of surgical anatomy (especially of the structure and anatomic relationships of the cavernous sinus), and more widespread