Walter Dandy

Walter Dandy


Walter Edward Dandy was an American neurosurgeon and scientist. He is considered one of the founding fathers of neurosurgery, along with Victor Horsley (1857-1916) and Harvey Cushing (1869-1939).

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Walter Dandy.


1886 Birth Born in 1886.


1903 17 Years Old Dandy was the only son of John Dandy, a railroad engineer, and Rachel Kilpatrick, who were immigrants from Lancashire, England, and Armagh, Ireland, respectively. Dandy graduated in 1903 from Summit High School (Missouri) in Sedalia, Missouri, as class valedictorian, and then graduated in 1907 from the University of Missouri.


1907 21 Years Old In September 1907, he enrolled in the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine as a second year student. (He had started medical studies during his junior year in college and accumulated enough credits to skip the first year of medical school at Johns Hopkins.) Dandy graduated from medical school in the spring of 1910 at the age of 24, and became the sixth appointee to the Hunterian Laboratory of Experimental Medicine under Harvey W. Cushing from 1910 to 1911. … Read More
1910 24 Years Old …  This paper was published in 1910, five months before he graduated from medical school.
1911 25 Years Old In 1911 and 1913, he described the blood supply and nerve supply, respectively, of the pituitary gland.
1913 27 Years Old In 1913 and 1914, Dandy and Kenneth D. Blackfan published two landmark papers on the production, circulation, and absorption of CSF in the brain and on the causes and potential treatments of hydrocephalus. … Read More


1918 32 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1918 and 1919 Dandy published his landmark papers on air ventriculography and the associated technique of pneumoencephalography. … Read More
1919 33 Years Old 1 More Event
Air ventriculography, however, had the limitation that a burr hole had to be drilled in the skull to pass the needle into the ventricular system. In 1919, Dandy published a less invasive technique that he labelled pneumoencephalography. … Read More
1921 35 Years Old Dandy's surgical innovations proceeded at an astounding rate as he became increasingly comfortable operating on the brain and spinal cord. He described in 1921 an operation for the removal of tumors of the pineal region, in 1922 complete removal of tumors of the cerebellopontine angle (namely acoustic neuromas), in 1922 the use of endoscopy for the treatment of hydrocephalus ("cerebral ventriculoscopy"), in 1925 sectioning the trigeminal nerve at the brainstem to treat trigeminal neuralgia, in 1928 treatment of Ménière's disease (recurrent vertiginous dizziness) by sectioning the vestibular nerves, in 1929 removal of a herniated disc in the spine, in 1930 treatment of spasmodic torticollis, in 1933 removal of the entire cerebral hemisphere ("hemispherectomy") for the treatment of malignant tumors, in 1933 removal of deep tumors within the ventricular system, in 1935 treatment of carotid-cavernous fistulas (CCFs), in 1938 ligation or "clipping" of an intracranial aneurysm, and in 1941 removal of orbital tumors. … Read More
1923 37 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1923, five years after finishing his arduous surgical training, Dandy started to focus on his personal life. … Read More


1938 52 Years Old Dandy's 1938 description of surgery for clipping of an intracranial aneurysm is particularly important because it marked the birth of the subspecialty of cerebrovascular neurosurgery. … Read More
1941 55 Years Old Irving J. Sherman, who trained in neurosurgery under Dandy from 1941 to 1943, addressed this in his recollections: … Read More


1946 60 Years Old 1 More Event
…  His personality is best summarized in his obituary in the Baltimore Sun of April 20, 1946: … Read More
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