Our History

The Department of Neurology of the University of Pennsylvania founded in 1871 by Dr. Horatio Wood, is the oldest neurology department in the country with a history of excellence in patient care, research and education in both adult and pediatric neurology. Today, Penn Neurology faculty members are engaged in groundbreaking research and clinical trials involving many complex neurological disorders. The Department includes over 143 full-time and associated faculty with a full range of clinical activities.

The Department, organized into 12 clinical divisions, provides patient care in state-of-the-art facilities located in the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Penn Medicine at Radnor, Pennsylvania Hospital, Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Veteran's Administration Hospital. The Department has grown dramatically and in FY10 faculty provided care for approximately 40,000 outpatient visits.

Developing effective treatments and therapies requires the expertise, dedication and cooperation of scientists from many fields of research. At Penn, the schools, centers and institutes across our campus are brought together in the Penn Comprehensive Neuroscience Center, where Neurology faculty are working together with faculty in other clinical and basic science departments to create an integrated approach to patient care, education and research.

The Department has been ranked highest in the region for Neurology by U.S. News and World Report and overall the clinical specialties at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania have been consistently ranked among the nation's best. It has been in the top ten Neurology Departments with respect to NIH funding during the last ten years. There are active research programs in Alzheimer's Disease, Frontotemporal Dementia, Parkinson's Disease, ALS, Cognitive/Behavioral Neurology, Neuromuscular Disease, MS, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Neurovirology (including HIV), Epilepsy, Stroke and Functional Neuroimaging.

The Department has a long tradition of excellence in the education of future leaders in the field of neurology. Its educational programs are highly acclaimed and the residency program is considered one of the best in the country, offering the opportunity to work with the leaders in neurological care and research, utilizing state-of-the-art resources, backed by a world-renowned medical center. The program is fully accredited for 27 Residents in adult and 12 Residents in pediatric neurology and is approved by the ACGME for five years. Eighty-five percent of Residents trained in the last 25 years currently hold academic positions. Additionally, there are a wide range of fellowships. Flexibility within the program allows for opportunities for trainees to participate in clinical and basic science research.