Dr. Richard Fessler, one of the nation's leading spine surgeons and researchers, joined Rush University Medical Center in the Department of Neurosurgery in July. Fessler comes to Rush from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, where he served as vice chair of the Department of Neurosurgery.
“Fessler has been a pioneer in minimally invasive spine surgery,” said Dr. Richard Byrne, chairperson of the Department of Neurosurgery at Rush. “He has made significant research and clinical contributions to endoscopic and microendoscopic surgical developments, including microendoscopic discectomy and microendoscopic decompression of lumbar stenosis.”
Fessler was one of the first surgeons to perform minimally invasive scoliosis surgery.
"In scoliosis, our clinical outcomes are equal to open surgery but our infection rate is essentially eliminated, our complication rate is only about one-fifth of the complication rate for open surgery and the cost drops dramatically," Fessler said.
He received his medical degree from University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, where he completed an internship in general surgery and a residency in neurosurgery, as well as post-doctoral research fellowships in neurological surgery and psychiatry.
Prior to his six-year stint with Northwestern, Fessler served as chief of the Section of Neurological Surgery at the University of Chicago for five years. From 2000-02, he was a professor in the Department of Neurological Surgery at Rush Medical School.
Fessler’s professional society memberships include American Association of Neurological Surgeons, American College of Surgeons, American Surgical Association, Illinois State Neurosurgical Society and Neurological Society of America.