Blume-Girvin Lecture in Epilepsy

Dr. Warren Blume and Dr. John Girvin

Each fall the Epilepsy Program at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Western University, hosts the Blume-Girvin Lecture in Epilepsy, in recognition of the clever work done by the founders of the Epilepsy program, Dr. Warren Blume (Neurologist) and Dr. John Girvin (Neurosurgeon). The inaugural lecture took place in October of 2016.

As the founders of one of the first Epilepsy programs in Canada, and the first program in Ontario, Drs. Blume and Girvin recognized the idea that epilepsy was a distinct discipline within Neurology and Neurosurgery. The concept of medically-intractable epilepsy had not been coined at that time, but their observations and the knowledge of its existence was present. They led a team of individuals that developed what is currently, one the largest and most comprehensive Epilepsy programs in the country. The program has trained dozens of neurologists and neurosurgeons in the field of epilepsy, many of whom have gone on to practice across Canada and internationally. The education provided by the Epilepsy program is recognized worldwide.

In honor of his work, Dr. Blume was recognized as an outstanding EEG and Epilepsy researcher by the American Epilepsy Society, the Canadian League Against Epilepsy and the International League Against Epilepsy. He was also made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2012. Dr John Girvin has been recognized by Western University, the Canadian Neurosurgical Society and The Royal College of Surgeons of Canada. He was also inducted to the Western Mustangs Football Wall of Champions in 2015.

The Blume-Girvin Lecturer is an individual of international reputation who is recognized for their contribution to Epilepsy Care, particularly Epilepsy Surgery and whose work is reflective of the principles and values articulated by Drs. Blume and Girvin.

The lecture series keeps viable the deep insights and wisdom of two remarkable neuroscientists, clinicians, researchers, educators and writers and will continue to bring global recognition to the Epilepsy program at Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry and Western University.

2018 Blume-Girvin Lecture

Dr. Dennis Spencer D.-Spencer-Web-Crop.jpg

The speaker at the 2018 Blume-Girvin Lecture in Epilepsy will be Dr. Dennis Spencer, Harvey and Kate Cushing Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at the Yale University School of Medicine. He is a graduate of Washington University School of Medicine and completed his neurosurgical residency at Yale in 1977.  He joined the Yale neurosurgery faculty following his residency, and became Chief of neurosurgery in 1987.  He has an international reputation in the surgical treatment of neurological diseases causing epilepsy and developed a widely used neocortical sparing surgical approach for patients with temporal lobe epilepsy.

His research has brought together basic scientists and clinicians around a program concerning energetics, glutamate metabolism and the neurobiological study of human epileptogenic tissue.  Study techniques have included 7T MRS, C13 intraoperative glucose turnover studies, and in vivo and in vitro electrophysiology and microdialysis, immunohistochemistry, confocal and EM microscopy, and molecular biology.  In particular, laboratory discoveries are correlated with the epileptogenic substrate in order to help define human epilepsy pathogenesis and potential therapies.  Most recently he has headed a neurotechnology team developing the next generation of intracranial electrodes, biosensors, wireless transmission and brain cooling to best study and modulate the human network of epileptogenesis.

Dr. Spencer was recipient of the 1999 American Epilepsy Society’s Research Award in Clinical Investigation, and the 2006 Society of Neurological Surgeons’ Grass Award for Excellence in Research.  He is past Chairman of the American Board of Neurological Surgery, past President of the Society of Neurological Surgeons, past Vice Chairman of the Neurosurgery Residency Review Committee for Neurosurgery, and past President of the American Epilepsy Society.  He served as interim dean of the Yale School of Medicine 2003-2004.

Lecture Title: The Role of Surgery and Technology in Focal epilepsy & its Comorbidities
Date: October 9, 2018, 8:45 - 9:30 a.m.
Location: University Hospital, Auditorium A

This lecture will be live-streamed over Twitter. Watch from anywhere in the world at @westernuCNS. #BlumeGirvin2018


Past Lectures:

2018 - Dr. Dennis Spencer 

Professor and Chair, Neurosurgery 
Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine
"The Role of Surgery and Technology in Focal Epilepsy & its Comorbidities"

2017 - Dr. Samuel Wiebe

Professor, Neurology
Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary
President, International League Against Epilepsy
"Precision Medicine in Epilepsy"
view poster
Watch here.

2016 - Dr. Phillipe Kahane

Professor, Neurology
Centre Hospitalier Universitarie Grenoble Aples
University Joseph Fourier, Grenoble, France
“Stereo-electroencephalography:Origins and current state of art”

Dr. Warren Blume, Professor Emeritus, Dr. John Girvin, Professor Emeritus, Dr. Dennis Spencer, Harvey and Kate Cushing Professor and Chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at the Yale University School of Medicine, and Dr. Jorge Burneo and Dr. David Steven, Co-Directors of the Epilepsy Program, at the 2018 Blume-Girvin Lecture in Epilepsy "The Role of Surgery and Technology in Focal Epilepsy & its Comorbidities".



Dr. David Steven, Co-Director of the Epilepsy Program, Dr. Warren Blume, Professor Emeritus, Dr. Samuel WiebeAssociate Dean for Clinical Research at the University of Calgary and Dr. Jorge Burneo, Co-Director of the Epilepsy Program, at the 2017 Blume-Girvin Lecture in Epilepsy "Precision Medicine in Epilepsy."