The Inova Neurological Surgery Residency is part of the comprehensive Inova Neuroscience and Spine Institute which is led by Dr. James Ecklund, former chairman of the Walter Reed Medical Center Department of Neurosurgery. There are several subspecialized programs within neurosurgery represented in the Department of Neurosciences, each with its own staff and individualized resources.
Our program is primarily located on the Inova Fairfax Medical Campus, which houses the nationally recognized Inova Fairfax Hospital as well as the new Inova Children's Hospital, Inova Women's Hospital, and the Inova Heart & Vascular Institute. Inova Fairfax Hospital is home to Northern Virginia's only Level 1 Trauma Center, and is consistently ranked among the top healthcare providers in the United States, and has been named #1 in the Washington, DC, metro area by U.S. News & World Report four years running. We were also ranked 3 in the state of Virginia, one of the best in Northern Virginia, and we were named a high performing hospital in nine specialties including Neurology & Neurosurgery.
Below is information about just a few of our specialized programs and facilities available to physicians in the institute.
Inova Brain Tumor Program
The Inova Brain Tumor Program offers the specialized, world-class expertise required for the diagnosis and treatment of brain and spinal cord tumors. The program is integral to the Inova Dwight and Martha Schar Cancer Institute's extensive regional cancer services.
Inova treats more than 5,500 individuals with cancer every single year. Our patients have access to state-of-the-art technology and a complete range of treatment and diagnostic alternatives. Inova hospitals have been ranked among the nation's top 15 percent of cancer centers by the American College of Surgeons and ranked among the area's best by U.S. News & World Report.
Inova Children’s Neuroscience Program
The Inova Children's Neuroscience Program is uniquely qualified to evaluate and treat neurological conditions from birth through adolescence. Combining the expertise of Inova Children's Hospital with the specialty knowledge of Inova Neuroscience Institute, the program features a full complement of board-certified specialists who cover all aspects of inpatient and outpatient care from diagnosis and treatment to rehabilitation and long-term follow-up. The combined specialized expertise of Inova's pediatric neurologists, pediatric neurosurgeons, pediatric critical care physicians, pediatric hematologist/oncologists, pediatric neuropsychologists, and pediatric psychiatrists forms the foundation of care excellence. Beyond this clinical care, extensive ancillary services and programs help children and families throughout their experience. Child Life specialists, social workers, physical, occupational and speech therapists, nutritionists and support groups all contribute to the care experience.
Inova Epilepsy Center
Inova's comprehensive epilepsy center requires unique specialists, leading technology and a multidisciplinary team. The Epilepsy Center at Inova Fairfax Medical Campus provides world-class services and patient care.
The National Association of Epilepsy Centers has accredited Inova Fairfax Medical Campus’s epilepsy program as a Level 4 epilepsy program since 2014 – the highest level of epilepsy care.
In addition to standard services, we provide complex neurodiagnostic monitoring and neuropsychological and psychosocial evaluation and treatment. Our Level 4 designation also means offering advanced epilepsy surgery services, including evaluation with intracranial electrodes.
Inova Movement Disorders Program
Be it Parkinson's disease, essential tremor, dystonia or other movement disorders, the Movement Disorders Program at Inova provides comprehensive care designed to get you moving again. From the first moments you meet with a specialist from the Inova Movement Disorders Program, you will understand our team's dedication to individualized care.
Read a blog post by Dr. Mahesh Shenai: "Inova Begins Era of MRI-guided Neurosurgery with Implantation of Deep Brain Stimulator"
Each person has his or her own unique brand of Parkinson's, essential tremor, dystonia, Huntington's disease or tic disorder and deserves a personalized treatment plan to address specific needs. Our experienced movement disorders team will work with you to chart a path to better health.
Inova Neurotrauma and Neurocritical Care
Whether responding to a patient's life-threatening traumatic brain or spinal injuries or providing treatment for a serious neurological disease, Inova's Neurotrauma and Neurocritical Care teams are unsurpassed in the Northern Virginia and Washington, DC, region for access, experience and breadth of service. Inova Trauma Center, Northern Virginia's only level 1 trauma center for the highest, most comprehensive level of trauma care available, is headquartered on the Inova Fairfax Medical Campus. Field leaders in the treatment of traumatic injuries of the brain and spinal cord collaborate with neurologists, neuroradiologists, critical care intensivists and a host of other physician and nurse specialists to provide world-class care around the clock, 365 days a year.
Inova Spine Program
The Spine Program at Inova consists of routine and subspecialty service lines that would give a trainee significant exposure to the field. Areas of expertise include spine trauma, degenerative conditions, spinal oncology, and adult/pediatric deformity.
The group utilizes a wide range of novel technologies including computer-aided spinal navigation and intraoperative CT. The trainee would experience a diverse and in depth exposure to all aspects of spinal surgery, to pursue a dedicated spinal fellowship, or an independent spine-focused practice.
Inova Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease Program
Under the auspices of the Inova Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease Program, all five Inova hospitals have earned The Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval® for stroke care. This certification as a Primary Stroke Center by The Joint Commission recognizes facilities that make exceptional efforts to meet the unique needs of stroke patients and foster better outcomes for stroke care. Inova's extensive diagnostic and treatment options include sophisticated minimally invasive technology and advanced imaging performed by our skilled interventional neuroradiologists and endovascular surgeons. Post treatment, Inova's comprehensive and regionally recognized rehabilitation programs further recovery and help patients return to normal activities.
Inova Neuroscience Research Program
The experienced researchers affiliated with the Inova Neuroscience Research Program are part of Inova's world-class team of neuroscience specialists that collaboratively work toward advancements in diagnoses and treatment of diseases of the nervous system. Our clinical trials and outcomes studies pair the expertise of our internationally recognized neuroscience physicians and researchers with the real-world needs of patients. Research within the department of neurosurgery is supported by a fully funded research office. The office has a research manager, secretarial support, and four full- time staff research coordinators who help with the regulatory and administrative tasks associated with the many research projects. This effort includes facilitating research submissions to the Inova Fairfax Institutional Review Board (IRB).
A course for residents is provided by the Inova Neuroscience and Spine Institute faculty. This course is a monthly lecture which instructs on the fundamentals of study design, statistics, etc. This curriculum will span the entire Inova neurosurgical residency, but will be particularly robust during the research year.
In addition, the Inova Neurosciences Research Office, in collaboration with George Mason University Krasnow Research Center provides experience in translational research. Inova neurosurgery residents will have full access to this facility and may be fully incorporated into ongoing research projects or develop new projects for the research year. Both of these options are available, with participation of the resident’s faculty advisor. The research facility houses basic science research laboratories encompassing many fields of basic science and surgical research including rehabilitation, emergency medicine, family medicine, general surgery, liver, digestive and metabolic disorders, orthopedic biology and engineering, and proteomics. Facilities also available to residents include confocal microscopy, flow cytometry, histology, mass spectrometry, molecular biology, and research engineering. The Krasnow also includes a fully accredited, vivarium facility for animal research and surgical training opportunities.
During the PGY-4 research year, the neurosurgery resident may also elect to conduct research with collaborators at the National Capital Consortium or the nearby National Institute for Health (NIH). The residents will be expected to submit for publication at least two manuscripts during or within six months following the conclusion of the research year.
DBS Operative MRI Suite
A life-altering technology known as deep brain stimulation (DBS) is helping patients in a whole new way. Following a three-year ramp-up and $500,000 investment in cutting edge equipment as part of Inova’s expanded Movement Disorders Program, Inova is now providing innovative care with DBS, colloquially known as a "pacemaker for the brain" because it delivers constant electrical pulses to counteract abnormal brain activity. Upwards of 20 patients already have been treated or are scheduled for treatment so far, with a projected 50 to 100 such procedures to be performed annually.
Neuro Intensive Care Unit
Whether responding to a patient's life-threatening traumatic brain or spinal injuries or providing treatment for a serious neurological disease, Inova's neurotrauma and neurocritical teams are unsurpassed in the Northern Virginia and Washington, DC, region for access, experience and breadth of service.
Inova Trauma Center, Northern Virginia's only level 1 trauma center for the highest, most comprehensive level of trauma care available, is headquartered on the Inova Fairfax Medical Campus. Field leaders in the treatment of traumatic injuries of the brain and spinal cord collaborate with neurologists, neuroradiologists, critical care intensivists and a host of other physician and nurse specialists to provide world-class care around the clock, 365 days a year.
Inova is home to two world-class medical simulation programs, ASTEC and ICAMS.
The Advanced Surgical Technology and Education Center (ASTEC) on the Inova Fairfax Medical Campus is the most technologically advanced surgery simulation facility in the region. The center provides surgeons, surgical residents and surgical teams unsurpassed real-time surgical training and education to improve skills, allow for observation and evaluation, and provide teambuilding opportunities to benefit patient care and safety.
The Inova Center for Advanced Medical Simulation (ICAMS) provides a safe, state-of-the-art environment for a multitude of advanced simulation and teamwork trainings. This 12,000 sq. ft. healthcare-centered center is one of the most robust in the region. ICAMS offers simulation services to the entire Inova Health System in everything from low-fidelity procedural simulations, high-fidelity patient simulations, and standardized patient encounters to communication, teamwork, workflow and handoff training. It promotes interprofessional and interdepartmental collaboration through a wide-variety of quality simulation training to enhance patient safety, teamwork, critical thinking, research and the patient experience.