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Neurosurgery
Neurosurgery

Who we are

Dr. James Drake  |  Dr. Peter Dirks  |  Dr. Abhaya Kulkarni  |  Dr. James Rutka  |  Dr. Michael Taylor | Dr. Doug Cochrane


Our six attending neurosurgeons are all internationally recognized leaders in paediatric neurosurgery and serve as professors of surgery at the University of Toronto. They all practice full time at SickKids and are fully dedicated to paediatric neurosurgery.

James M. Drake BSE, MBBCh, M.Sc., FRCSC, FACS
Head, Division of Neurosurgery, SickKids
Harold Hoffman Shoppers Drug Mart Chair Paediatric Neurosurgery
Director Centre for Image Guided Innovation and Therapeutic Intervention (CIGITI), SickKids
Co-Lead Centre of Image Guided Care, SickKids
Professor, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto
Phone: 416-813-6125 | Fax: 416-813 4975

james.drake@sickkids.ca

 

Started practice: 1988

Areas of expertise:

  • Hydrocephalus
  • Neuroendoscopy
  • Minimally-invasive craniosynostosis
  • Tumours
  • Spasticity
  • Epilepsy
  • Spinal disorders

Dr. Drake is one of the preeminent world experts in the field of hydrocephalus. He was one of the pioneers in the field of neurosurgical endoscopy and has the most experience in this in Canada. He also offers minimally-invasive, endoscopic surgery for craniosynostosis and treats patients with spasticity and complex spinal disorders.

Dr. Drake, who has a background in engineering, runs a highly successful biomedical technology lab, in which he is developing new robotic and other technology to make brain surgery better and safer.

See Directory listing for more.

 


Peter B. Dirks MD, PhD, FRCSC
Staff Neurosurgeon, SickKids
Senior Scientist, Developmental and Stem Cell Biology, SickKids
Garron Family Chair in Childhood Cancer Research
Professor, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto

Peter.dirks@sickkids.ca

 

 

Started practice: 1998

Areas of expertise:

  • Tumours
  • Vascular disease
  • Neuroendoscopy
  • Craniosynostosis
  • Hydrocephalus

Dr. Peter Dirks is a world expert on pediatric brain tumours and was the first to make the ground-breaking discovery of stem cells in brain tumours. This discovery has changed how brain tumours are studied and treated. His practice specializes in the management of brain and spinal tumours and surgical treatment of vascular disorders in children, including arteriovenous malformations and moyamoya disease.

. See Directory listing for more.


Abhaya V. Kulkarni, MD, PhD, FRCSC
Program Director, Division of Neurosurgery, SickKids
Senior Scientist, Child Health Evaluative Sciences, SickKids
Director, Pediatric Gamma Knife Program
Professor, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto

abhaya.kulkarni@sickkids.ca

 

 

 

Started practice: 2003

Areas of expertise:

  • Hydrocephalus
  • Neuroendoscopy
  • Tumours
  • Radiosurgery

Dr. Abhaya Kulkarni is an international leader in the fields of hydrocephalus and neuroendoscopy. He developed the first quality of life measure for children with hydrocephalus and developed the ETV Success Score, which is used across the world.  Dr. Kulkarni is also director of the Gamma Knife program, offering radiosurgery to children with arteriovenous malformations and tumours, and Director of the Neurosurgery Residency Training Program.

 See Directory listing for more.


James T. Rutka, MD, PhD, FRCSC, FACS, FAAP, FAANS
Neurosurgeon,
Co-director & Principal Investigator, The Arthur and Sonia Labatt Brain Tumour Research Centre,
Senior Scientist, Cell Biology, SickKids
RS McLaughlin Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto
Editor-In-Chief, Journal of Neurosurgery
Phone: 416-978-2623  |  Fax: 416-978-3928
james.rutka@utoronto.ca / james.rutka@sickkids.ca
http://surgery.utoronto.ca/home.htm

 

Started practice: 1990

Areas of expertise:

  • Tumours
  • Epilepsy
  • Neuroendoscopy
  • Hydrocephalus

Dr. Rutka is one of the most renowned and accomplished paediatric neurosurgeons in the world. He is Director of the Arthur and Sonia Labatt Brain Tumour Research Centre, the largest centre for paediatric brain tumour research in the world. Aside from his expertise in brain tumours, Dr. Rutka is also one of the most experienced paediatric epilepsy surgeons.

Dr. Rutka serves as Editor-in-Chief of the premier journal in neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery, and as Chairman of the Department of Surgery, University of Toronto. In 2014, Dr. Rutka was awarded the Order of Ontario.

 See Directory listing for more.


Michael D. Taylor MD PhD FRCSC
Neurosurgeon, SickKids
Senior Scientist, Developmental & Stem Cell Biology, SickKids
Garron Family Chair in Childhood Cancer Research
Professor, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto

mdtaylor@sickkids.ca

 

 

Started practice: 2004

Areas of expertise:

  • Tumours
  • Hydrocephalus

Dr. Taylor is a world leader in the study of brain tumour molecular genetics. His ground-breaking research has radically changed how childhood brain tumours, including medulloblastoma and ependymoma, are classified and treated. He holds the Garron Family Chair in Childhood Cancer Research.

See Directory listing for more.


Doug CochraneDouglas Cochrane, MD FRCSC   
Neurosurgeon, SickKids

Douglas.Cochrane@sickkids.ca

 

 

 

Started practice: 1981

Areas of expertise:

  • Patient safety policy and accountability mechanisms, risk assessment, evaluation and mitigation.
  • Health-care systems development and change focusing on the provider skills and competence through the analysis of quality and safety provided during medical and surgical care.
  • Clinical information system development and implementation.
  • Congenital brain and spinal cord disorders affecting children focusing on hydrocephalus, spina bifida and occipital-cervical cord compression.
  • The use of central nervous system imaging technologies to define physiological parameters of relevance to the treatment of children with hydrocephalus.
  • Brain tumors occurring in the third ventricle and spinal cord.

Following his training, Dr. Cochrane was appointed as neurosurgeon at the Calgary General Hospital, Foothills Provincial Hospital, Tom Baker Cancer Center and Alberta Children’s Hospital, and served these facilities until 1986. During this time, he held an appointment as Assistant Professor of Neurosciences, University of Calgary.

In 1986, Dr. Cochrane was appointed as a staff neurosurgeon at BC Children’s Hospital and Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children. He served as the Head of the Section of Surgery and Surgeon-in-Chief, BC Children’s Hospital and Children’s and Women’s Health Centre of British Columbia 1991-2001, Vice President of Medicine for Children’s and Women’s Health Centre of British Columbia 2001-2003, and Vice President of Medical Affairs, Quality, Safety & Risk Management for the Provincial Health Services Authority in Vancouver 2003-2008. He Chaired the BC Patient Safety Task Force from its inception in 2003 to the creation of the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council. He has served as Chair of the Canadian Patient Safety Institute and now serves as the Chair of the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council. He is the Provincial Patient Safety Officer for British Columbia.

See Directory listing for more.

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