Robert Heller, M.D., has joined Albany Med’s Department of Neurosurgery and has been named assistant professor of neurosurgery at Albany Medical College. He specializes in the surgical treatment of pituitary tumors, meningiomas, acoustic neuromas and gliomas. He is also skilled in stereotactic radiosurgery, a precisely targeted form of radiation therapy to treat tumors.
As a cranial and skull base surgeon, Dr. Heller will work with a team comprised of neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, and ear, nose and throat surgeons who make up Albany Med’s Pituitary and Minimally Invasive Cranial Base Surgery Program.
Dr. Heller completed a complex cranial and skull base neurosurgery fellowship at Tampa General Hospital and University of South Florida in Tampa. He completed his residency training at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, where he also received his medical degree. His research interests include clinical outcomes in minimally invasive approaches to skull base surgery, and he has authored or co-authored nearly two dozen journal articles and book chapters. His professional society memberships include the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and the North American Skull Base Society.
He resides in Delmar.
Dr. Heller is seeing patients at Albany Med’s Department of Neurosurgery at 43 New Scotland Ave. To schedule an appointment or for more information, call the Department of Neurosurgery at (518) 262-5088.
Dr. Friedman is getting a lot of emails on booster shots versus third shots. Third shots are for immuno-compromised patients that the FDA is recommending for a small group of patients The FDA also has the intention to soon make booster doses widely available to all healthy individuals. I am writing to clarify the difference between booster shots and third doses.
Third Doses for Immuno-Compromised Patients
The purpose of a third dose of mRNA vaccine is to give immuno-compromised patients the same level of protection that two doses provide someone who has a normal immune system. It is recommended that the following people get a third dose
Been receiving cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
Received a stem cell transplant within the last two years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
Been diagnosed with moderate or severe immunodeficiency conditions (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
An advanced or untreated HIV infection
Been under active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids (> 20 mg of prednisone or 100 mg of hydrocortisone) or other drugs that may suppress immune response
Dr. Friedman thinks it is unlikely that any of his patients have these conditions. Patients with Cushing’s syndrome, Addison’s, diabetes or thyroid disorders do not qualify.
In contrast, a Booster Dose is for Patients With Healthy Immune Systems
A booster dose—which is different from a third dose for immuno-compromised patients—is for healthy patients and is meant to enhance immunity and may protect against new variants of the virus.The Biden administration has announced that it intends to make booster doses available for people with healthy immune systems in September 2021, after they are authorized or approved by the FDA. This has not happened yet, but when it happens, Dr. Friedman would encourage his patients to get it.
Dr. Friedman is expecting a booster shot against the Delta variant to be released in the fall of 2021 and would recommend that for his patients.
Dr. Friedman wishes everyone to stay healthy.
Each year, Global Genes convenes one of the world’s largest gatherings of rare disease patients, caregivers, advocates, healthcare professionals, researchers, partners and allies.
Join us for a variety of interactive and educational events, meet-ups, workshops and networking opportunities. Here you’ll have the opportunity to connect and engage with others in the rare disease community, while experiencing the sense of community and belonging we’ve missed so much. Gain insights about the latest in rare disease innovations, best practices for advocating on an individual and organizational level, and actionable strategies you can implement immediately to accelerate change.
The 2021 RARE Patient Advocacy Summit is a virtual event, happening Monday, September 27, 2021 through Wednesday, September 29, 2021.
2021 RARE Patient Advocacy Summit virtual registration is now open!
The award will presented to Dr. Oyesiku at the Society’s 2021 Annual Meeting August 8-11.
Nelson M. Oyesiku, MD, PhD, FACS, Chair Chair of the UNC School of Medicine Department of Neurosurgery, will receive the Distinguished Service Award given by the Society of University Neurosurgeons at their 2021 Annual Meeting in Whitefish, Montana, August 8-11.
Prior to joining the UNC faculty on April 1, 2021, Dr. Oyesiku was Professor of Neurological Surgery and Medicine (Endocrinology) at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia and the Inaugural Daniel Louis Barrow Chair in Neurosurgery, Vice-Chairman of the Department of Neurological Surgery and Director of the Neurosurgical Residency Program. Dr. Oyesiku’s clinical expertise is pituitary medicine and surgery. Dr. Oyesiku was co-director of the Emory Pituitary Center and has developed one of the largest practices entirely devoted to the care of patients with pituitary tumors in the country and has performed over 3,700 pituitary tumor operations. Dr. Oyesiku obtained his MD from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He obtained an MSc in Occupational Medicine from the University of London, UK and completed a PhD in Neuroscience at Emory University. He completed his Surgery Internship at the University of Connecticut-Hartford Hospital and obtained his neurosurgical training at Emory University, Atlanta. He is board-certified by the American Board of Neurological Surgery. He received an NIH K08 Award and Faculty Development Award from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation was a recipient of an NIH R01 award and PI of the NIH/NINDS R25 Research Education Program for Residents and Fellows in Neurosurgery. Dr. Oyesiku has served on several NIH Study Sections. Dr. Oyesiku’s research is focused on the molecular pathogenesis of pituitary adenomas, and tumor receptor imaging and targeting for therapy.
Dr. Oyesiku has served on various state, regional, national and international committees for all the major neurosurgical organizations. He has served on the Board of Directors and as Chairman of the American Board of Neurological Surgery. He was on the ACGME-Residency Review Committee of Neurosurgery. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and has served on its Board of Governors. Dr. Oyesiku has been President of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. He has served as Secretary/Treasurer and President of the Georgia Neurosurgical Society, President of the Society of University Neurosurgeons, and Vice-President of the American Academy of Neurological Surgeons. He is President of the International Society of Pituitary Surgeons. He is President-Elect of the World Federation of Neurological Surgeons.
Dr. Oyesiku is Editor-in-Chief of NEUROSURGERY, OPERATIVE NEUROSURGERY and NEUROSURGERY OPEN – leading journals in neurosurgery. He is author of over 180 scientific articles and book chapters.
He has been selected by his peers as one of The Best Doctors in America and was selected by the Consumer Research Council of America as one of America’s Top Surgeons. He is named in Marquis Who’s Who in America. He is a member of the Honor Medical Society – Alpha Omega Alpha. He was awarded the “Gentle Giant Award” by the Pituitary Network Association for his services to Pituitary Surgery and Medicine. He is on the Medical Advisory Board of the Cushing’s Support and Research Foundation. He has been visiting professor and invited faculty at several departments of neurosurgery in the United States and abroad.