Rinsho Shinkeigaku (Clinical Neurology)

The 50th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Society of Neurology

History of neurology and education of neurology in Japan

Shigeki Kuzuhara, M.D.

National Center Hospital of Neurology and Psychiatry [4-1-1, Ogawa-Higashi, Kodaira, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan]

The first medical society of Japanese neurologists and psychiatrists was founded in 1902, but psychiatrists gradually dominated in number. New "Japanese Society of Neurology" (JSN) was founded in 1960. The number of members was only 643 in 1960, while it rose up to 8,555 in 2009, including regular, junior, senior and associate members. JSN contributed much to solve the causes and treatment of the medicosocial and iatrogenic diseases such as Minamata disease and SMON (subacute myelopticoneuropathy) at its early period. In undergraduate education at medical school, neurology is one of the core subjects in the curriculum, and almost all the 80 medical schools have at least one faculty neurologist. The Board of neurology of JSN was started in 1975, as the third earliest of the Japanese Medical Associations. It takes at least 6 years' clinical training after graduating from the medical school to take the neurology Board examinations. By 2009, 4,000 members passed the Board examinations. In 2002 JSN published evidence-based "Treatment Guidelines 2002" of 6 diseases: Parkinson's disease, stroke, chronic headache, dementia and ALS. As to the international issues, JSN hosted the 12th World Congress of Neurology in 1981, and international activities markedly increased after that. The first informal meeting with JSN and Korean Neurological Association (KNA) was held at the 48th JSN Annual Meeting in Nagoya in May 2007. In May 2008 the KNA-JSN 1st Joint symposium was held at the 49th Annual Meeting of JSN in Yokohama on "International comparison of neurological disorders: focusing on spinocerebellar atrophies (SCA) and epilepsies". In May 2009, KNA-JNS 2nd Joint Symposium was held at the 50th JSN Annual Meeting in Sendai, inviting a speaker from Taiwan Neurological Society, on the subject "History and Education of Neurology in Japan, Korea and Taiwan". In this symposium, a strategy to make up the Northeast Asian Neurological Association was discussed.
Full Text of this Article in Japanese PDF (123K)

(CLINICA NEUROL, 49: 968|971, 2009)
key words: Japanese Society of Neurology, history, education, international activity, treatment guidelines

(Received: 21-May-09)