The WFNS was founded in 1955.

William Beecher Scoville wrote an extensive letter to the officers of the neurosurgical societies in Europe and America and to outstanding leaders in neurosurgery, explaining the actual situation. As a great majority of the answers to his letter were positive, William Scoville arranged for a meeting of senior European neurosurgeons and representatives of 17 national neurosurgical societies, which was held in Brussels on September 4 and 5, 1955.

After ample discussions and deliberations, it was decided to institute “an international organization composed of and controlled by the component neurosurgical societies”. Thus the birth of the World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies had taken place although the baby had not yet received its official name.

It was officially baptized somewhat later when the Constitution had been drafted and ratified at the executive session during the International Congress of Neurological Sciences in Brussels on the historical date of Saturday, July 20, 1957.

Heinrich Quincke in 1897 reported the first cases of IIH shortly after he introduced the lumbar puncture into medicine. It was named pseudotumor cerebri in 1904 but was not well delineated clinically until the 1940's when cerebral angiography was added to pneumoencephalography to identify cases of cerebral mass lesions. Foley coined the term benign intracranial hypertension in 1955 but reports from the 1980's demonstrated a high incidence of visual loss 1) 2) and the term “benign” is no longer appropriate

Gliosarcoma was first reported by Strobe in 1895 but did not gain wide acceptance until 1955 when Feigin and Gross described, in detail, three patients with this malignancy 3) 4).

Corbett JJ, Savino PJ, Thompson HS, et al. Visual loss in pseudotumor cerebri. Follow-up of 57 patients from five to 41 years and a profile of 14 patients with permanent severe visual loss. Arch Neurol. 1982;39:461–474.
Wall M, Hart WM, Jr., Burde RM. Visual field defects in idiopathic intracranial hypertension (pseudotumor cerebri) Am J Ophthalmol. 1983;96:654–669.
Stroebe H. Uber Entstehung und Bau der Gehirngliome. Beitr Pathol Anat Allg Pathol. 1895;18:405–486.
FEIGIN IH, GROSS SW. Sarcoma arising in glioblastoma of the brain. Am J Pathol. 1955 Jul-Aug;31(4):633-53. PMID: 14388124; PMCID: PMC1942557.
  • 1955.txt
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