Public Release: 

Greater Expectations: New Beginnings after Brain Injury Forum

Conference designed as a forum for dialogue between psychotherapists and other health professionals who work with brain-injured patients in the recovery phase.

Neuropsychoanalysis Foundation

Lives are drastically changed following brain injury from strokes, accidents, tumors, and other incidents. Because the brain has changed, the person's mind is necessarily also affected, changing the sense of self, relationships with others, ways of functioning in the world, and much more.

The Neuropsychoanalysis Association (NPSA) and the Weill Cornell Brain and Spine Center are hosting this conference for researchers, clinical neurologists and neuropsychologists, neurosurgeons and psychotherapists. This conference brings together experienced professionals to discuss the services that are currently offered to patients with brain injury, and to point the way towards improved, expanded, and more integrated treatments that support patients to adapt and to develop new capacities.

The program will include presentations from medical clinicians and researchers on the experience of neurosurgeons in treatment of brain injury, research on traumatic brain injury and care, advances in neuropsychological testing, and psychopharmacological treatment for patients. Additionally, psychotherapy clinicians will present on the experience of working with brain-injured patients using psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral therapy and holistic approaches.

WHAT: The keynote address will be delivered by Dr. Philip E. Stieg, Director of the Weill Cornell Brain and Spine Center and Neurosurgeon-in-Chief of the New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. His patient, Nancy Jarecki, will speak from a personal perspective about recovery from a brain aneurysm.

Dr. Mark Solms (University of Cape Town), Director of the Arnold Pfeffer Center for Neuro-Psychoanalysis at the New York Psychoanalytic Institute and a founding figure of neuropsychoanalysis, will discuss how doctors can understand the very subjective and individual experiences of neurological patients.

Dr. Giles Yeates (UK National Health Service), will discuss how relationships between survivors and those closest to them are affected by traumatic brain injuries. Dr. Yeates will stress how psychological therapies can help survivors manage emotions and provide emotional support for all parties.

WHEN: Thursday, October 30 Highlighted sessions:

  • 9:15 a.m. - Personal perspective from neurological patient, Nancy Jarecki

  • 9:30 a.m. - Keynote from Dr. Philip Stieg

  • 11:15 a.m. - Dr. Mark Solms

  • 12:15 p.m. - Dr. Giles Yeates

  • 12:45 - 1:45 p.m. - experts available for media interviews

WHERE: Uris Auditorium

Weill Cornell Medical College

1300 York Avenue at 69th street

Media attendees: please confirm with Ashley Paskalis for security clearance

Greater Expectations: New Beginnings After Brain Injury - Full Program

9:00 a.m. Welcome - Laurie Glimcher, Dean of Weill Cornell Medical College

Introductory remarks: Maggie Zellner, The Neuropsychoanalysis Foundation

9:15 a.m. Personal perspective from a neurological patient, Nancy Jarecki

9:30 a.m. Keynote: Phil Stieg, Weill Cornell Medical College

10:00 a.m. Wayne Cordon, Mt. Sinai - The Complex Roadmap of TBI Research and Care

10:30 a.m. Yaakov Stern, Columbia - Current Neuropsychological Testing After Brain Injury - Advances and Challenges

11:00 a.m. Coffee Break

11:15 a.m. Mark Solms, University of Cape Town - The Man Who Lived a Dream

11:45 a.m. George Prigatano, Barron Neurological Institute - Psychotherapy and the Process of Coping with a Brain Disorder

12:15 p.m. Giles Yeates UK National Health Services - Working Psychodynamically with Neurological Patients and Their Partners

12:45 p.m. Lunch

1:45 p.m. Judy Avner, Brain Injury Association of New York State

2:00 p.m. Jonathon Silver, NYU - Psychopharmacological Treatment for Patients with Traumatic Brain Injury: Possibilities and Challenges

2:30 p.m. Amanda Sacks, Weill Cornell Medical College - CBT for Brain Injury

3:00 p.m. Coffee break

3:30 p.m. Robert Schmehr, MSKCC - Holistic and Mindfulness Approach to Brain Injury Recovery

4:00-5:00 p.m. Discussion and Closing Remarks


The Neuropsychoanalysis Association (NPSA)

Bringing the brain and mind sciences together, the Neuropsychoanalysis Association has been working to bridge the gap between neuroscience and the psychotherapeutic approaches to mental health for over two decades. Fostering discussion, funding new research and making crucial scientific and theoretical connections, this interdisciplinary alliance plays an essential role in advancing our understanding of the human psyche. For more information visit

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