SpineUniverse Editorial Board Member Honored

Mon, 03/24/2003
Edward C. Benzel, MD was recently honored by the AANS/CNS Section on Disorders of the Spine and Peripheral Nerves with the "Meritorious Service Award" for outstanding contributions at their March 2003 meeting in Tampa, Florida.

Edward C. Benzel, M.D. has been actively involved in both the AANS/CNS Section on Disorders of the Spine and Peripheral Nerves serving as President from 1995-1996. He has played a seminal role in the development and delivery of the AANS Spine Continuing Education Courses Committee both as a participant of the program and as Director of the AANS Professional Development Committee 1996-1999.

Clinical and Research Interests
Dr. Benzel's major clinical and research interests embrace many aspects of neurosurgery but have focused on spinal disorders. His research has encompassed such issues as spine biomechanics, neurological outcomes following spinal cord injury, critical care, trauma, and management of thoracic and lumbar spine trauma with spinal instrumentation. Dr. Benzel has three U.S. Patents in the area of spine surgery.

A Distinguished Career
Edward C. Benzel was born in Spokane, Washington. He received a Bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from Washington State University in 1971 and enrolled in the Medical College of Wisconsin School of Medicine that same year. He began his surgery internship in 1975 at the Medical College of Wisconsin where he also began his neurosurgery residency under the tutelage of Sanford Larson, M.D. In 1981 he completed a spine fellowship, again under Sanford Larson, M.D.

Institutes Spine Fellowship Program
Dr. Benzel and his family moved to Shreveport, Louisiana in the fall of 1981 where he assumed an academic position at Louisiana State University, later becoming Chief of the Division of Neurosurgery. After eight years of substantial clinical and research activity, he accepted the position of Chief of the Division of Neurosurgery at the University of New Mexico, School of Medicine in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In 1991 he launched a spine fellowship and implemented an accredited neurosurgery residency training program in July 1993. The first resident began training in October of that year and a full complement of residents initiated their training in July 1994.

Directs Multidisciplinary Team
In 1999, Dr. Benzel accepted the position Director of Spinal Disorders at The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, Ohio where he directs a multidisciplinary team of spine care specialists in research, education, and patient care. He also holds the titles of Vice Chairman of the Department of Neurosurgery and Residency Program Director.

Accomplished Author
Dr. Benzel has published several textbooks in the field of spine care including his single-authored, first and second edition textbook, Biomechanics of Spine Stabilization. He has authored five books and contributed 81 chapters to medical texts and edited twelve books. Dr. Benzel has written and published 104 peer-reviewed journal articles and over 250 abstracts.

Leader in Spinal Issues
Dr. Benzel rigorously reviews clinical and research content for numerous professional publications in the neurosurgical and spine fields. He is a member of the Editorial Review Boards of the Journal of Neurosurgery, Neurosurgery, Spine, and The Spine Journal and is an ad hoc reviewer for a variety of additional journals.

Most recently, he has assumed a keen leadership role for the development of the Decade of the Spine (2001-2010) as well as the Second International World Spine Meeting, World Spine 3 in 2003, both of which are a broad scale international medical and public health initiatives. In each of these roles, he provides organizational direction as well as strategic planning and program development expertise. The goal of these initiatives is to provide increased public awareness and to research funding for spinal disorders both nationally and internationally.

Personal Interests
Dr. Benzel's personal interests include running, bicycling, and a variety of other outdoor activities, many of which he participates in with his family. He and his wife Mary have four children, Morgan, Jason, Brian, and Matthew, and two grandchildren, Karsen and Lucas.

SpineUniverse.com offers Dr. Benzel its congratulations on the Award and upon his distinguished career.