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Department and Faculty

The neurosurgical service at Mayo Clinic is one of the largest in the United States. Each year, the entire spectrum of neurosurgical conditions and disease is treated essentially at one site, which ensures an unparalleled training experience.

Many cases are "straightforward" neurosurgical problems, which include brain tumors, cerebral aneurysms, and spinal disease. This allows neurosurgical residents to become skilled in the management of typical neurosurgical problems. However, there are also many complex cases which are referred to Mayo neurologists and neurosurgeons for evaluation and treatment. These difficult cases will often require a multidisciplinary team approach to patient care which broadens the educational opportunities for residents.

The average neurosurgical caseload at Mayo Clinic in Rochester is approximately 3,800 major operations per year, which includes:

  • 860 operations for brain tumor
  • 100 for trauma
  • 285 for vascular diseases (aneurysm, AMV, carotid, bypass)
  • 145 transsphenoidal operations
  • 3400 operations for functional disorders (epilepsy, movement, pain)
  • 230 peripheral nerve procedures
  • 150 endovascular procedures
  • 1,300 spinal procedures including 140 for intraspinal tumor and 230 cases of complex spinal disease involving instrumentation
  • The average chief resident operative caseload is approximately 450 operations per year
  • The cumulative case volume at Mayo Clinic in Florida and Mayo Clinic in Arizona available for training is approximately 3,500 cases.


In addition to caring for patients in their clinical practices, Mayo Clinic's faculty members are committed to teaching and facilitating the resident's development as a neurosurgeon. Many of the department faculty have published and lectured extensively and are well regarded for their specialty and subspecialty expertise. All residents have close and frequent contact with these individuals throughout the training experience.

Resident Mentor

At the start of the PGY-2 or PGY-3 year, you will select or are assigned a neurosurgery faculty mentor. This relationship is established early in the residency to encourage access to faculty members for advice. Mentors are expected to give close attention to the resident's goals, objectives, and spectrum of operative experience throughout the training program.

The mentor can also help you chose a research project, give guidance about post-residency career planning, and serve as an advocate in post-training placement.

The Chair of the Department is also intimately involved in counseling and guiding each resident during their tenure. There are regular individual meetings between the resident and the chair during the training program to discuss advanced subspecialty training pertaining to career and professional aspirations.

Visiting Professors

Many prominent neurosurgeons visit Mayo Clinic each year. They present their work at scheduled conferences and/or morning lectures and participate in hospital rounds. These visits are scheduled to include time for informal interaction between the visitor and residents

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