Irish Spine Society’s Annual Conference

October 13th, 2018 – Time 8.30AM – 5.30pm
Venue: Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland


Approved for 6 CDP credits by RCSI and 8 CEUs by NMBI

Schedule – October 13th 2018

Venue – Cheyne Theatre, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) Dublin, Ireland


8:30am – 9:00am

Cheyne Theatre



9:00am – 9:05am

Cheyne Theatre

Welcome from Prof John McCabe President, Irish Spine Society & Mr. Joseph Butler, Secretary, Irish Spine Society 


9:05am – 9:55am

Cheyne Theatre

Morning Session – Free Papers


1.1 NRS20: Combined Back and Leg Pain Score: A Simple and Effective Assessment of Adult Spinal Deformity

DT Cawley, D Larrieu, T Fujishiro, D Kieser, L Boissiere, E Acaroglu, A Alanay, F Kleinstuck, F Pellisé, FS Perez-Grueso, JM Vital, O Gille, I Obeid, European Spinal Study Group.
Institut de la Colonne Vertébrale, Spine Unit 1, Bordeaux University Hospital, France.

1.2 Can We Predict Pedicle Dimensions in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis – A Morphometric Analysis of Transverse Process and Ipsilateral Pedicle

G Reddy1, M Mohamed1, J Alsousou1,2, J Trivedi1, C Bruce1, N Davidson1, S Munigangaiah1*
1 Alder Hey Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, E Prescot Road, Liverpool, UK L14 5AB
2 University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3BX

1.3 Use of a Novel Corrective Device for Correction of Deformities in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis

I Feeley1,2, A Hughes1,2, N Cassidy1,2, C Green1,2
1. Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital, Ireland
2. Children’s University Hospital, Temple St, Ireland

1.4 The Establishment of an Acute Radiculopathy Pathway in the West of Ireland

Dalton DM1,3, Elkhwad H1, O’Connor S2, De Burca N2, Devitt A1, Byrne F1
1 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Galway University Hospitals
2 Department of Physiotherapy, Galway University Hospitals

1.5 Sarcopenia as a Primary Cause of Lower Back Pain and Screening for Sarcopenia in the Secondary Prevention of Lower Back Pain

Gibbons, D.1, Ahern, D.P.2, Curley, A.3, Butler, J.S.4

1School of Medicine, Trinity College Dublin
2Trinity Centre for Bioengineering, Trinity College Dublin
3Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist, Tallaght University Hospital
4 Consultant Spinal Surgeon, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Tallaght University Hospital

1.6 Optimising Navigation Guided Spine Surgery through a Lean Principles Approach

DT Cawley, V Rajamani, M Cawley, D Bhagawati, S Selvadurai, A Gibson, S Molloy
Dept of Spinal Surgery, RNOH Stanmore, Brockley Hill, Stanmore HA7 4LP, UK

1.7 Intra-operative Imaging for Spinal Level Localisation in Lumbar Surgery

Mohamed Dablouk1*, Jahangir Sajjad1, George Kaar1, Chris Lim1, Michael O’Sullivan1
1Department of Neurosurgery, Cork University Hospital, Wilton, Cork, Ireland

1.8 To Determine the Quality of C-Spine Screening Radiology in Trauma Patients in Ireland

Dalton DM1,2, Hennelly G1, McCabe JP1
1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Galway University Hospitals

1.9 Managing Risk – Introducing the O-Arm to an Irish Spinal Unit

Andrew J. Hughes, Michael Dodds, Marcus Timlin, Noelle Cassidy, Seamus Morris, Keith Synnott, Joseph S. Butler
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin.

1.10 Occipitocervical Fusion – An Epidemiological Drift Experienced in an Irish Tertiary Spinal Referral Centre: 20 Years Follow Up Study

N Tarazi, S Munigangaiah, AT Devitt, JP McCabe
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Bon Secours Health System Galway,


9:55am – 10:15am

Cheyne Theatre

Questions & Answers


10:15am – 10:30am

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Mr David O’Brien

Consultant Neurosurgeon, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
Presentation: Syringomyelia Management


10:30am – 10:40am

Cheyne Theatre

Questions & Answers


10:40am – 11:10am

Cheyne Theatre

Tea/Coffee & Trade Exhibition, Exam Hall


11:10am – 11:20am

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Ms Aisling Brennan

National Triage MSK System – Focus on Spine Referrals – An Update


11:20am – 11:35am

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Dr. Arjun Sebastian, MD

Senior Associate Consultant Orthopedic Surgery, Assistant Professor of Orthopedics and Neurosurgery, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota. 
Presentation: Malpractice in Spine Surgery 




11:35am – 11:50am

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Dr. Scott C. Wagner, M.D

Spine Surgeon, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Betheda, Maryland, USA
Complex Spine Surgery in the Elderly Population: Pearls and Pitfalls



11:50am – 12:10pm

Cheyne Theatre

Questions & Answers


12:10pm – 12:25pm

Cheyne Theatre

President’s Address: Professor John P. McCabe

Personal Professor Orthopaedic and Spine Surgery, Galway University Hospitals, Bon Secours Hospital Galway, National University of Ireland Galway  



12:25am – 13:25pm

Cheyne Theatre

Working Lunch & Trade Exhibition, Exam Hall


13:25pm – 13:40pm

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter:   Dr. Patrick Morrissey, MD

Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Naval Medical Centre, San Diego, U.S.A.
Presentation: Treatment of the Military Athlete with Degenerative Spinal Pathology  



13:40pm – 13:55pm

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Ms Marie Elaine Grant

Specialist Membership of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists, Physiotherapist to the International Olympic Committee
Presentation: Risk Management of Athletic Low Back Pain



13:55pm – 14:15pm

Cheyne Theatre

Questions & Answers


14:15pm – 15:10pm

Cheyne Theatre

Afternoon Session – Free Papers

2.1 Surgery for Spinal Metastasis in an Irish Tertiary Referral Centre over an 8 Year Period

FJ McCabe1, M Jadaan2, F Byrne2, A Devitt2, JP McCabe2
1. Discipline of Surgery, School of Medicine, NUI Galway
2. Spine Service, Department of Trauma & Orthopaedics, Galway University Hospitals

2.2 Spinal Tumour Surgery – A Single Centre Experience

J. Sajjad, J. Lord, C. Marks, G. Kaar, MGJ O’Sullivan
Department of Neurosurgery, Cork University Hospital, Ireland.

2.3 RUNX2, the Master Regulator of Bone Metastasis?

FJ McCabe1, D Courtney1, M Jadaan2, JP McCabe2, MJ Kerin1
1. Department of Surgery, Lambe Institute for Translational Research, NUI Galway
2. Spine Service, Department of Trauma & Orthopaedics, Galway University Hospitals

2.4 Hyaluronic Acid Based Hydrogels for the Treatment of Intervertebral Disc Degeneration: a Rat Tail Model

Tiernan D1,2*, Isa IL2, Devitt A1,2, Srivastava A2, Pandit A2
1Department of Orthopaedics, Galway University Hospital, Newcastle Road, Galway, Ireland.
2National University of Ireland, Galway, Newcastle Road, Galway, Ireland.

2.5 Management of Osteoporotic Vertebral Fractures in Irish Hospitals

Mark Mc Gowan, Claire Gallagher, Elaine Hughes, Michelle Fitzgerald, Caitriona Cunningham
University College Dublin, School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science, Belfield

2.6 What is the Perfect Pathway to Enhance Patient Care in the Management of Osteoporotic Thoracolumbar Fractures?

Dr Pedro Ferreira1 , Mr. Nagy Darwish2 2Spinal Surgery Consultant Belfast Health and Social care Trust
1Belfast Health and Social care Trust
2Spinal Surgery Consultant Belfast

2.7 The Effect of the Erector Spinae Plane Block on Post-Operative Opioid Consumption in Patients Undergoing Lumber Spine Decompression Surgery: A Comparative Pilot Study

M Elhadi, J McDonnell, J P McCabe
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Bon Secours Health System Galway, National University of Ireland Galway.

2.8 Using Ultrasound Scans to Measure Longitudinal Growth of Magnetically Controlled Growing Rods

M Mohamed1, J Alsousou1,2, M De’Matas, S Munigangaiah1*, J Trivedi 1, C Bruce1, N Davidson1
1 Alder Hey Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, E Prescot Road, Liverpool, UK L14 5AB
2 University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3BX

2.9 Operative Management of Perinatal Lumbar Disc Herniation and Cauda Equina Syndrome: A Case Series

Daniel P Ahern1, Denys Gibbons2, Michael Dodds1, Marcus Timlin1, Noelle Cassidy1, Seamus Morris1, Keith Synnott1, Joseph S Butler1,2
1National Spinal Injuries Units, Department of Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgery, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.
2Spine Service, Department of Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgery, Tallaght University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.

2.10 Thoracolumbar Junctional Fractures and The Rock Climbing Wall: A Case Series

Ms Rosanne-Sara Lynham, Mr Marcus Timlin
National Spinal Injuries Unit, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital Dublin


15:10pm – 15:30pm

Cheyne Theatre

Questions & Answers


15:30pm – 16:00pm

Cheyne Theatre

Tea/Coffee, Posters & Exhibition, Exam Hall


16:00pm – 16:15pm

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Dr. David Kaye, MD

Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic and Neurological Surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, The Rothman Institute
Presentation: Perioperative Management of Dysphagia after Cervical Spine Surgery



16:15pm – 16:30pm

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Dr. Christopher Kepler

Associate Professor, Rothman Institute & Thomas Jefferson University, U.S.A
Presentation: Management of Intraoperative and Postoperative Neurologic Deficits  



16:30pm – 16:45pm

Cheyne Theatre

Presenter: Professor Ciaran Bolger

Consultant Neurosurgeon, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin
Presentation: Managing Risk with Neurophysiological Monitoring  



16:45pm – 17:15pm

Cheyne Theatre

Questions & Answers


17:15pm – 17:30pm

Cheyne Theatre

Closing Remarks



Cheyne Theatre

Conference Ends


Professor John P McCabe, President Irish Spine Society


Current Positions:
Consultant Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon (Spine and Hip/knee surgery) at Bon Secours Hospital and Galway University Hospitals
The Medical Director, Bon Secours Hospital, Galway
Professor of Orthopaedic and Spine Surgery, NUI, Galway
President of The Irish Spine Society


1985: Conferred with an honours medical degree from NUI Galway and awarded first place in class for the final medical year

1989: F.R.C.S.I. RCSI

1989: Master of Medical Science Degree, NUIG

1990: Master in Surgery, NUIG

1993: F.R.C.S (Orth) RCSI

1994: Certificate of Accreditation in Orthopaedic Surgery ,Intercollegiate Board

1995: Fellowship in Spine Surgery, The Hospital for Special Surgery, New York Hospital -Cornell Medical Centre, New York

1996: Fellowship in Joint Reconstructive Surgery, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York Hospital -Cornell Medical Centre, New York

2017: Personal Professor in Orthopaedic and Spine Surgery, NUI, Galway


Clinical Practice
Having commenced practice in Galway in 1996, Professor Mc Cabe is the longest-serving Spine Surgeon in the Irish Public System. His expertise covers the full spectrum of traumatic, degenerative and tumour spine conditions as well as deformity surgery. He has pioneered technologies in this area including anterior and posterior cervical fixation and percutaneous spinal surgery. He has particular expertise in the management of complex spinal conditions in the presence of prior surgery.
Professor Mc Cabe also has an extensive practice in hip and knee surgery given his unique dual fellowship training in the world-renowned Hospital For Special Surgery, New York. This experience has ensured that he is skilled and has a wealth of knowledge in dealing with all aspects of musculoskeletal conditions pertaining to the spine and hip/knee area, conditions which often times can be difficult to diagnose and treat.

Research and Publications:
Professor Mc Cabe is very involved in ongoing research and teaching particularly in the area of spinal surgery. He has over 80 publications in peer reviewed journals as well as a number of co-authored book chapters in both spinal surgery and arthroplasty. He presents regularly at national and international meetings.

Areas of Interest


Hip & Knee Surgery

Mr Joseph Butler, Secretary Irish Spine Society


Mr Butler completed surgical training in Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. He subsequently completed clinical fellowship training in complex spine deformity and tumour surgery at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Stanmore, UK; spine trauma and degenerative spine surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA; and complex, revision and minimally invasive spine surgery at the Rothman Institute, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, USA.



He is an active clinical and laboratory researcher based at Trinity College Dublin. He was awarded a PhD in bone biology by University College Dublin and has over 100 publications and 100 presentations at national and international scientific meetings. He has 40 major national and international awards for his research work and is on the editorial board of several major journals in the fields of Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgery and Spine Surgery. He is the secretary of the Irish Spine Society (ISS) and sits on the Biologics & Basic Research Committee and Robotics & Navigation Committee of the North American Spine Society (NASS). His h-index is 21 and he has over 1300 citations of his research.


National Spinal Injuries Unit, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital,

Mater Private Hospital & Tallaght University Hospital.





O’Mara Medical

Mainstay Medical



Professor Ciaran Bolger, Professor Clinical Neuroscience at Beaumont Hospital Dublin


Professor Ciaran Bolger is currently  Head of  Department of Clinical Neuroscience, RCSI, Director of Research and Development, National Neurosurgery Unit, Beaumont Hospital Dublin and Consultant Neurosurgeon, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin.

He is Visiting Professor of Neurosurgey at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, Adelaide Australia, Washington University St Louis, USA and University of Aarhus, Denmark.

Previous positions include consultant appointments at  Frenchay Hospital Bristol UK and The Royal Adelaide Hospital South Australia.

He trained in Neurosurgery at the Walton Centre for Neurology and Neurosurgery Liverpool, Primary Children’s Medical Centre, Salt Lake City Utah USA and in Orthopaedic Spinal Surgery at The Royal Adelaide Hospital, South Australia.

He is a Past Secretary and Past President of EuroSpine (the Spine Society of Europe) and the next Meeting President of the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies.

He is a recipient of several international awards including from the International Society for the Study of the Lumbar Spine, the Presidents Design Award from the President of Singapore, Awards from the Association for the Study of Medical Education, the Biomedical Synergistics Institute, Wichita, Kansas, The Biological Society, Dublin, the Intensive Care Society, UK and the Society of British Neurosurgeons, UK.

He is on the Editorial Board of the European Spine Journal and on the Review Panel or Advisory board of several other Neurosurgery or Spine Journals.

He currently serves on the council of the Society of British Neurosurgeons and the European Spine Foundation and previously served on the Executive of the British Cervical Spine Society.  He is the UK representative to both the EANS and WFNS.

He is the Author of numerous book chapters and papers on neurosurgery, spinal surgery and has several published patents in the same area.

He has been invited speaker at numerous international medical and scientific meetings and has served as faculty on international training courses for neurosurgery, spinal and computer guided surgery.

He is a serial entrepeneur, have been involved in 5 startups 4 of which, to date, have achieved commercialisation.

He is a qualified and enthusuastic pilot. He also served as Candidate Astronaut to the European Space Agency.



Managing Risk with Neurophysiological Monitoring  


Aisling Brennan, MSK Advanced Practice Physiotherapist, Tallaght Hospital


MSK Advanced Practice Physiotherapist, Tallaght Hospital. National Planning and Performance Physiotherapist, National MSK Steering Group.

Aisling graduated from RCSI in 2002. She subsequently completed an MSC in Neuromusculoskeletal Physiotherapy in UCD in xx. She has completed further postgraduate training in Advanced Practice Physiotherapy in particular Diagnostic Ultrasound, Radiology Interpretation and Injection Therapy.

Aisling currently works in Tallaght hospital in the MSK Triage Service working at both Orthopaedic and Rheumatology clinics. Since 2017 she is also working as The National Planning and Performance Physiotherapist with the National MSK Steering Group.




Mr David O’Brien, Consultant Neurosurgeon, The National Neurosurgery Centre, Beaumont Hospital


Qualified in University College Galway (now National University of Ireland Galway) in 1986.  After 12 months internship, I did my basic surgical training in Galway from 1987 to 1990, followed by one year as Clinical Lecturer in Surgery. I began my neurosurgery training at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin with higher neurosurgical training in Manchester, England. Travelled to the Royal Melbourne Hospital in Australia initially as an International Fellow but subsequently became a consultant neurosurgeon with a special interest in complex spinal surgery.

Returned to England as a consultant neurosurgeon with a special interest in complex spinal surgery to the Hull Royal Infirmary in 1999.  Whilst in England completed degrees in business (MDA) and in Medical Law (LL.M).  Returned to the Department of Neurosurgery in Beaumont Hospital Dublin in 2009, continuing a keen interest in complex spinal disorders.


Syringomyelia Management


Dr Marie-Elaine Grant


Dr Marie-Elaine Grant, Ireland’s Olympic Team Lead Physiotherapist from 1990 – 2010, a graduate of UCD ( University College Dublin) and a Specialist Member of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists and is currently a member of the Medical and Scientific Commission of the International Olympic Committee since her appointment in 2010.

In 1981 Marie-Elaine graduated in Physiotherapy from UCD, since this time she has gained extensive experience working in renowned medical centres both at in Ireland and abroad which led her to specialising in sports physiotherapy.   Following her graduation, she started her career working in one of the University Hospital’s in Dublin and subsequently at the University Hospital in Geneva and Sports Injuries Centers in the USA. In 1985, she was appointed to commission and head the physiotherapy department and sports injury clinic of a leading Irish Hospital (Blackrock Clinic). At the same time advancing clinical experience and expertise in the treatment and rehabilitation of a wide range of orthopedic and musculo- skeletal conditions and sports injuries, supporting sports teams and aspiring athletes.

She developed a special interest in the rehabilitation and management of spinal pain and has undertaken clinical research in this area. She was awarded a PhD in 1997, the title of her research thesis was: Evaluation of the Effects of Spinal Strengthening using a Sports Medicine Exercise Approach , and continues to focus on developing and advancing spinal rehabilitation programmes.

In 1990 she was appointed to the Irish Olympic Medical and Committee, in this role she planned and implemented a strategy for provision of high quality physiotherapy services for high performance athletes which required extensive work developing physiotherapy support networks and collaboration with medical teams working with sport’s National Governing Bodies.  She has worked with many of Irelands Olympic athletes focusing on injury prevention and screening programmes an initiative which is now incorporated into athlete’s health and performance strategies.

 As lead physiotherapist to the Olympic Council of Ireland she was appointed to the Irish Olympic Team for 5 consecutive Summer Olympic Games commencing with Barcelona 1992 through to Beijing 2008. She has also worked extensively with developmental and youth athletes and was appointed to 10 Irish European Youth Olympic Squads. 

In 1997 she commenced her own physiotherapy practice in Dublin where she continues to enjoy clinical practice particularly in her specialist area of sports and exercise physiotherapy providing expert assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of sports injuries and sports related conditions from recreational to high performance athletes.

She has peer reviewed publications relating to sports injury and physiotherapy topics. She lectures on third level BSc Physiotherapy programmes and post-graduate MSc programmes in Sports and Exercise Physiotherapy and mentors post graduate physiotherapists. Through Olympic Solidarity she has also give sports physiotherapy education to developing nations in Africa.

In 2010 Marie-Elaine was appointed to the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Medical Commission Games Group, in this role Marie-Elaine is responsible for monitoring all physiotherapy activities and facilities for all nations participating at an Olympic Games (Winter and Summer) and is the main contact person for the IOC for all issues related to physiotherapy and rehabilitation. She is currently facilitating with physiotherapy and physical therapies preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

She was awarded Specialist Membership of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists in 2006 which has been renewed in 2013 for a second term. In September 2013  she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from University College Dublin in recognition of expertise and contribution to Physiotherapy in Ireland.



Risk Management of Athletic Low Back Pain


David Kaye, MD, Assistant Professor of Orthopedic and Neurological Surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, The Rothman Institute.


Dr. Kaye is a fellowship trained spine surgeon and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, NY, graduating with honors as a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) Honor Society.

He then completed his internship in general surgery and his residency in Orthopaedic Surgery at NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases in New York, NY where he was awarded the Nate Bondi Award, a distinction given for excellence in leadership, teamwork, and academic integrity. He completed a fellowship in Spine Surgery at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA and has stayed on as staff.


Perioperative Management of Dysphagia after Cervical Spine Surgery

Post-operative dysphagia is a known risk factor after cervical spine surgery with a well-defined spectrum of severity ranging from expected mild swallowing pain to significant difficulties even requiring enteric feeding. Correction of cervical deformity can further predispose to this untoward complication. We will review the literature on post-operative dysphagia and potential perioperative interventions along with some illustrative case examples.


Christopher Kepler, Associate Professor, Rothman Institute & Thomas Jefferson University


Dr. Kepler completed a two year fellowship in spine surgery and spine research at Rothman Institute and Thomas Jefferson University. Prior to fellowship, Dr. Kepler completed his residency at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City.

He received his M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 2005 and also attended business school at Columbia, receiving an MBA.

He has published more than a hundred and fifty peer-reviewed articles and presents regularly at national and international spine meetings. He has multiple ongoing research interests including a strong interest in basic research where he studies the molecular biology of disc degeneration and strategies to prevent postoperative infection, research which is funded by the NIH.  Dr. Kepler has a faculty appointment at Thomas Jefferson University where he directs a basic science lab and is heavily involved in clinical research.


Management of Intraoperative and Postoperative Neurologic Deficits

The known risks associated with spinal surgery does little to lessen the anxiety felt by a surgeon during or after an operation when a patient suffers a neurologic injury. Medical, social and practical strategies for mitigation of patient harm, physician anxiety and medicolegal consequences are discussed along with several case examples.


Patrick Morrissey, Lieutenant Commander


Lieutenant Commander Morrissey hails from a strong Navy tradition, with a grandfather who served as a Navy medic and a father who was a career salvage diver. Upon graduation from high school he attended Harvard University on a Navy ROTC scholarship where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry. His medical degree is from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and he attended orthopaedic residency at Naval Medical Center San Diego.

From there he traveled to Philadelphia for his spine fellowship at the Rothman Institute. He currently resides with his wife and twin toddlers in San Diego, California where he serves as Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic surgery at the Naval Medical Center. Dr. Morrissey’s academic interests include the treatment of young athletes with degenerative spinal pathology. He currently cares for a diverse military population that includes members of both the Marine Corps and Navy SEALs.


Treatment of the Military Athlete with Degenerative Spinal Pathology

The demands of military service present unique challenges in the management of degenerative spinal pathology. The degenerative disease often presents much earlier than in the civilian population and caring for the warfighter requires a thoughtful approach to both operative and nonoperative treatment. Young military patients require short recovery times and durable results. Specific challenges for the military spine surgeon include the management of cervical radiculopathy and isthmic lumbar spondylolisthesis in the young. This presentation will focus on the treatment considerations and outcomes for these disorders in an active duty military population.

Arjun Sebastian, M.D


Senior Associate Consultant Orthopedic Surgery, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
Assistant Professor of Orthopedics and Neurosurgery

Case Western Reserve University BA, Biology
Case Western Reserve University MS, Applied Anatomy
Case Western Reserve University MD
Mayo Clinic Residency, Orthopedic Surgery
Rothman Institute, Spine Fellowship, Philadelphia, PA

Board Certifications
American Board of Orthopedic Surgery Part I, 2016

After completing undergraduate and medical school at Case Western Reserve University, Arjun began his orthopaedic surgery residency at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. It was during his time as a resident that he became interested in spine surgery and went on to do a spine surgery fellowship at the Rothman Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Following completion of his fellowship, Arjun went back to Mayo Clinic to join on as staff. Since returning to Mayo, Arjun has enjoyed participating in high-value initiatives to both decrease cost and increase quality in spine surgery.


Malpractice in Spine Surgery

Spine surgery has unique inherent risks and complications that set it apart from other surgical specialities. As such spine surgeons typically pay higher malpractice premiums than other surgical disciplines and face considerably higher malpractice rates, indemnity payments, and defence costs. Despite this, little evidence is available describing medical liability issues in spine surgery, and surgeons themselves typically have a limited understanding of the subject. Understanding how complications can result in claims, and strategies to minimize risk is crucial.

Scott C. Wagner, M.D


Scott C. Wagner, MD is a fellowship trained spine surgeon at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, MD. Upon graduation from residency, he was the recipient of the Norman T. Kirk Award from the WRNMMC Department of Orthopaedic Surgery for outstanding patient care, scientific research, and education.

During subspecialty training in spinal surgery, he was selected as the 2017 recipient of the CDR Michael T. Mazurek Clinician Scholar Award by the Society of Military Orthopaedic Surgeons, for commitment to excellence in military orthopaedic education and research. In 2018, he was named one of the North American Spine Society’s “20 Under 40”. Dr. Wagner has authored hundreds of meeting abstracts, publications and textbook chapters, and has presented internationally on topics related to conditions of the spine.


Complex Spine Surgery in the Elderly Population: Pearls and Pitfalls


Registration Categories

Hospital Consultant:  €100  – Book Now

Physiotherapist, Nurse, Medical Trainee:  €50 – Book Now

Healthcare Student: no charge ( valid student ID required) – Book Now

The registration fee includes:

• Access to the conference sessions
• Access to the exhibition and posters
• Conference programme
• Tea/coffee breaks and working lunch on the 13th of October


Cancellation Policy

Registration fee is non-refundable.
Registrations are transferable (within the same category) until October 10th.
All cancellations must be sent in writing via e-mail to

Gallery of Images from the 2016 Irish Spine Society Conference