What is your name and where do you live?
Michael Fehlings and I live in Toronto, Canada.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I am a Professor of Neurosurgery at the University of Toronto and hold the Robert Campeau/Charles Tator Chair in Brain and Spinal Cord Research. I am also Vice Chairman for Research in the Department of Surgery at the University of Toronto and Co-Direct the University of Toronto Spine Program. I have an active clinical practice in complex spine surgery and run a translationally oriented clinical and basic science research program to discover regenerative solutions for traumatic spinal cord injury and degenerative cervical myelopathy (DCM). I have trained over 200 clinical and research students and fellows from around the world.
What is your role at Myelopathy.org?
I am a scientific advisor and am active in RECODE-DCM.
How did you hear about Myelopathy.org and why did you get involved with charity?
I have an active interest in DCM (my group coined the term in 2015). Dr Mark Kotter was one of clinical fellows at the University of Toronto and I inspired in him an intense interest in DCM. When Mark returned to the UK, he established Myelopathy.org along with one his trainees, Dr Benjamin Davies. I got involved in Myelopathy.org from the beginning and spoke at the House of Lords event which initiated public interest in DCM in the UK.
What has your experience been like with Myelopathy.org?
I have been actively involved with RECODE-DCM from its inception. Myelopathy.org is a key initiative to raise awareness and to facilitate knowledge discovery and knowledge translation related to DCM.
What do you do during your spare time?
I enjoy spending time with my family which includes 3 children and 4 grandchildren. I enjoy traveling. My family and I enjoy spending time at our lakeside retreat in Muskoka—two hours drive north of Toronto. I enjoy biking, hiking, and skiing.
Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself.
- I am an active clinical neurosurgeon and am passionate about teaching, research and mentorship.
- My favourite place in the world is at our lakeside retreat in Muskoka—it’s relaxing and incredibly beautiful.
- While I enjoy traveling, I do not spend more time in airplanes than I do at home in Toronto. 🙂