The Fifth International Neurological Congress in Lisbon, 1953

Tychala, Christina-Areti; Triarhou, Lazaros C.
December 2018
European Neurology;2018, Vol. 80 Issue 5/6, p321
Academic Journal
We present an overview of the International Neurological Congress that was held in Lisbon, Portugal, on September 7–12, 1953, the fifth in the series of meetings that became a tradition and helped to establish Neurology and Neurosurgery as independent medical specialties in the mid-twentieth century. Four main symposia focused on vascular and metabolic diseases of the brain and on the parietal lobe. An additional 345 papers were read on diverse topics. The Congress was attended by 982 delegates from 39 countries. A central figure was Egas Moniz (1874–1955), the pioneer of cerebral angiography, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1949 for applying prefrontal leukotomy to manage certain forms of psychosis. Special tributes were paid to Constantin von Monakow (1853–1930) and Santiago Ramón y Cajal (1852–1934) on the occasion of the centennial anniversary of their births. A satellite meeting was held in Madrid immediately after the Lisbon conference; speakers including John F. Fulton (1899–1960), Sir Walter Russell Brain (1895–1966) and Fernando de Castro (1896–1967) praised the discoveries of Cajal, the neuron theory, and their impact on the medical sciences and on the future of Neurology.


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