Samuel H. Selesnick, MD, FACS

Surgeon and Neurotologist

Conditions Treated

Samuel H. Selesnick, MD, FACS
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About Me

I am a surgeon and neurotologist with 25 years of experience caring for people with diseases in and around the ear, including at the skull base and within the skull. I treat people by observation, radiosurgery (surgery using radiation), and skull base microsurgery (surgery near the bottom of the skull).

Many of my patients have a benign condition known as an acoustic neuroma, which is a tumor that grows in the ear’s acoustic nerve. When surgery is necessary, I work alongside neurosurgeons to very precisely remove the unwanted tissue.

Other skull base tumors that I treat include meningiomas, epidermoids, and glomus tumors. I also manage the surgical and medical treatment of people suffering from complex ear-related problems such as hearing loss, otosclerosis (an abnormal growth of bone in the ear), cholesteatoma (a skin cyst that grows in the middle ear), and facial nerve tumors.

In addition to being a member of the neurosurgery team at Memorial Sloan Kettering, I serve as a Professor and Vice Chairman of the Department of Otolaryngology and as a Professor of Otolaryngology in Neurological Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College. I greatly enjoy working with students and overseeing their rotation through Cornell’s Department of Otolaryngology.

When I myself was a medical student, I initially thought I would become a family practice doctor. Then I became fascinated with the anatomy of the ear and surrounding areas. So I went from wanting to know a little bit about everything to becoming an expert in this subspecialty.

As such, I lecture nationally and internationally on ear-related, neurotologic, and skull base topics and am Past President of the American Otological Society. I’m also a past President of the American Neurotology Society, the nation’s largest specialty organization of neurotologists/skull base surgeons. I have been on the executive council of the American Neurotology Society and have served on or chaired numerous committees for the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, the Triological Society, the American College of Surgeons, and others. I am also on the board of directors of the American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, and was the proud recipient of their Certificate of Honor in 1996.

In my research, I have been the principal investigator on a number of key clinical trials and have published extensively in peer-reviewed journals. I am on the editorial board of the journal Otology and Neurotology and have been a guest editor of The Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America.

One of my jobs is to educate each patient about his or her condition and then to explain what the best treatment options are. My hope is that patients feel confident and reassured that they are getting the very best care possible.

Outside of work, I enjoy sports and traveling with my family.

  • Clinical Expertise: Skull-Base Surgery; Acoustic Neuromas and Skull Base Tumors
  • Awards and Honors: Past President of the American Otological Society; Past President of the American Neurotology Society; Recipient of The Certificate of Honor bestowed by The American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
  • Languages Spoken: English
  • Education: MD, New York University School of Medicine
  • Residencies: General Surgery - St. Vincent's Hospital; Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery - Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospital
  • Fellowships: Otology, Neurotology, and Skull Base Surgery - University of California San Francisco
  • Board Certifications: Otolaryngology; Neurotology

See My Colleagues


Visit PubMed for a full listing of Samuel H. Selesnick’s journal articles

Pubmed is an online index of biomedical articles maintained by the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

Clinical Trials

As home to one of the world’s top cancer research centers, Memorial Sloan Kettering is typically involved in more than 900 clinical trials at a given time. Currently, clinical trials focused on the conditions I treat are enrolling new patients. If you’re interested in joining a clinical trial, click to learn about the trial’s purpose, eligibility criteria, and how to get more information.

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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. Medicare and New York State Medicaid also provide benefits for care at MSK.

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