I have dedicated my life’s work to the surgical treatment of children with brain and spinal disorders. I am internationally recognized for my deep experience in challenging surgeries. These include removing tumors near the spine and in the ventricles of the brain (called intraventricular brain tumors); managing tumors in the pineal gland, also in the brain; treating congenital cysts, which are present in the body at birth; and correcting Chiari malformation, a condition in which tissue from the brain extends into the spinal canal. I perform about 300 surgeries each year; many of them are minimally invasive.
One of the techniques I specialize in is endoscopic surgery. This method uses small cameras called scopes that are inserted through tiny incisions or the openings in the body, such as the nose and mouth. I perform this type of surgery for the conditions above, as well as for hydrocephalus (water on the brain) and colloid cysts, which form inside the ventricles of the brain. Endoscopic surgery has revolutionized the way we treat these diseases. It reduces the risk of complications and enhances recovery but is just as effective as traditional open surgery. I also use this approach to treat some adult patients, in addition to children.
In my research, my laboratory focuses on improving outcomes for children with brain tumors. We study brain tumor models and new approaches to chemotherapy.
We also study the use of very small catheters to deliver medicine to parts of the body that can’t be accessed through surgery. This technique is known as convection-enhanced delivery. Our work has paved the way for clinical trials and the chance for effective treatments for children who otherwise do not have these options.
For example, in a phase I clinical trial that I am leading in children with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), a type of brain stem tumor, we are evaluating the effectiveness and safety of delivering different doses of a new drug directly into the tumor through convection-enhanced delivery. Find out more about this clinical trial and eligibility for enrollment by calling 212-639-2336.
In addition to my role as a neurosurgeon at Memorial Sloan Kettering, I serve as Vice Chair of the Department of Neurological Surgery, Director of Pediatric Neurological Surgery, and Professor of Neurological Surgery and Pediatrics at Weill Cornell Medical College. Nationally, I am Chair of the Neurosurgery Committee of the Children’s Oncology Group, and I serve on the editorial boards of several of the most prominent peer-reviewed neurosurgery journals.
I am inspired by the children I treat and the commitment of their parents. When I meet a patient for the first time, I try to gain a level of trust and confidence and provide comfort. I recognize that honesty, integrity, and humility are important components of my relationship with my patients and their parents. These virtues form the foundation of everything I do.
- Clinical Expertise: Pediatric Neurosurgery; Pediatric Brain Tumors; Endoscopic Surgery; Pineal Region Tumors; Brainstem Tumors
- Awards and Honors: Castle Connolly: New York Magazine Best Doctors (2012-2013, 2016); Castle Connolly: Top Doctors, New York Metro Area (2004-2012), Cristian Rivera Vision of Hope Award (2012-2014), Consumers’ Research Council of America Top Surgeons Award (2010), Alpha Omega Alpha (inducted 1988)
- Languages Spoken: English
- Education: MD, Wayne State University School of Medicine
- Residencies: NYU Medical Center; University of Michigan Medical Center
- Fellowships: The Hospital for Sick Children (Toronto)
Research is integral to our mission at Memorial Sloan Kettering, and clinical trials help us discover better forms of patient care and treatment. For you, this could mean access to a new therapy or therapy combination. Click to see a list of the trials I’m currently leading.
Clinical Trials Led by Mark M. Souweidane
Most major health insurers offer plans that include MSK as one of their in-network providers. If MSK is in-network, it means all our doctors are too. Medicaid and New York State Medicare also provide benefits for care at MSK.Learn more