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Tradition of Excellence

History of UC San Diego Neurosurgery

In 1971, the newly formed University of California, San Diego appointed Dr. John Alksne as Division Chief of Neurological Surgery, launching San Diego's only academic neurosurgery program.  

Neurological Surgery at UC San Diego has grown tremendously in the past five decades under the guidance of four chairs: Dr. John Alksne, Dr. Lawrence Marshall, Dr. Bob Carter, and current chair Dr. Alexander Khalessi.  

UC San Diego Neurological Surgery has been - and continues to be - home to innovative and pioneering research and many well-respected neurosurgeons and neurosurgical trainees. The Department is known for its tradition of service to its patients, and efforts of past and present faculty to push the frontiers of neurosurgical care.

Excellence in Leadership

UC San Diego neurosurgeons are involved in a wide array of diverse committees and societies, both regionally and abroad. Our Department collaborates with research colleagues to pave new paths for the advancement of neurological care and research. Our faculty lead an assortment of committees and national societies including:

  • Congress of Neurological Surgeons 
  • American Association of Neurological Surgeons 
  • Women in Neurological Surgery 
  • Society of Neurological Surgeons 
  • Society of Neurointerventional Surgery 
  • San Diego Academy of Neurological Surgeons 
  • North American Skull Base Society 
  • North American Spine Society  
  • Society for Neuro-Oncology 
  • Latin American Federation of Neurosurgeons