The Global Spine Congress 2021 will feature a range of pre-courses that will explore some of the hottest topics and techniques for today’s spine care specialists. Please note that for some sessions you do not need to be registered for the GSC. 

AO PEER @ GSC Online Blended Course— Principles of Clinical Research 
Supported by AO Spine


October: 1 month online self-directed learning
November 2, 14:00-18:00 Live online event
November 3, 14:00-18:00 Live online event

Registration GSC registration not required
Regular price 224 EUR
AO Member price 160 EUR


Participants will learn about the importance of research and evidence-based medicine (EBM), the relevant ethical considerations and guidelines for Good Clinical Practice (GCP) with a focus on the formulation of a clinical research question.

In addition to practicing some of the skills related to critical literature review, this course offers support in working with a statistician, how to publish and navigating the AO Program for Education and Excellence in Research (AO PEER) to help make their research project a success.

In this blended program, the basic principles will be taught in an online setting over a 1-month period, followed by a 2 days synchronous online event with interactive workshops and discussions.

Module 1: Why is research important?
Module 2: Does your study follow the ethical guidelines?
Module 3: Step-by-step to your research question
Module 4: Literature—reading between the lines
Module 5: How to navigate your research environment
Module 6: Give your study statistical power
Module 7: Getting ready to publish
Module 8: Make your research a success

See full program details here.

Preliminary speakers

Asdrubal Falavigna
Matthew Allen
Dino Samartzis
Sara Hassouna Elsayed
María Eugenia Pireira
Anita Hasler
Mohammad El-Sharkawi
Marcelo Valacco
Vincenzo Giordano
Atiq Uz Zaman

Learning objectives

At the end of this course, participants should be able to:

  • Explain the importance of doing research and the link to evidence-based medicine
  • Apply the basic principles of literature search and critical appraisal
  • Follow GCP guidelines and adhere to ethical requirements, eg, informed consent
  • Identify a clinical problem, formulate a clinical research question, and select the study design
  • Collaborate with a statistician to perform sample size calculation and basic statistical analyses
  • Describe the principles of medical writing
  • Utilize available research environment, resources, and tools

Target Audience

This course is mainly aimed at fully qualified medical specialists, and also at any other individuals who want to learn or improve the skills in conducting clinical research and publishing results and also at those with a general interest in research and documentation of clinical cases.


Next generation spinal intervention training:
hands-on in VR and simulator


November 3

04:00-11:00 (Eastern Standard Time: -6 hours from Paris)
10:00-17:00 (Central European Standard Time)
16:00-23:00 (Chinese Standard Time: +6 hours from Paris)


Onsite 160 EUR
Online 80 EUR (FREE for virtual fee registered GSC participants)


This one-day intensive workshop is intended to advance the existing skills of spine practitioners from a multi-specialty perspective. Distinguished faculty combines didactic instruction and state-of-the art virtual reality and simulation training with topics related to the clinical evaluation of complex pain and functional impairment.

Advanced management options including the role of epidural injections, disc access, Radiofrequency Ablation, and diagnostic procedures. Focus will be in developing appropriate skills using the latest technology to mimic real life injection procedures. Spinal anatomy, patient selection, and high yield clinical pearls are covered in depth.

Time will be provided for open discussions with attendees and faculty on important topics such as indications, risks, literature controversies in peer-review process, and pitfalls. Additionally, faculty will discuss outcome monitoring as part of the skill-set in treating complex pain disorders and their associated functional impairments and disability.

Preliminary speakers

Karsten Wiechert
Gene Tekmyster
Danny Goel
Daniel Seifert
Simon Weidert

Learning objectives

Upon completion of the course, participants will gain strategies to:

  • Explain the role of advanced pain procedures in the evaluation and treatment of spine pain
  • Comprehend the potential risks and complications of advanced spinal interventions to patients
  • Gain technical skills and knowledge in performing therapeutic and diagnostic spine procedures
  • Understand the role of radiofrequency denervation in treating lumbar facet pain including appropriate diagnostic injection skills and techniques


10:00 Welcome and introduction  Karsten Wiechert
10:15 Diagnostic spine injections for surgical planning  Gene Tekmyster
10:30 Therapeutic spine injections  Karsten Wiechert
10:45 Risks, Complications and Radiation Safety  Gene Tekmyster
11:00 Introduction to VR as a training tool  Danny Goel, NN
11:15 The role of surgical simulators in surgical training Simon Weidert, Daniel Seifert
11:30  Coffee break  

Hands-on injection training in VR environment and on the surgical simulators

  • Lumbar facet joints, medial branch blocks, radio frequency ablation
  • Lumbar epidural injections: Interlaminar, transforaminal
  • SI joint injections
  • Cervical facet joints, periradicular
  • Lumbar disc access
16:45  Summary and wrap-up  



Sports and Spine symposium—A comprehensive approach to integrating successful spine care into sports medicine


November 3

07:00-11:00 (Eastern Standard Time: -6 hours from Paris)
13:00-17:00 (Central European Standard Time)
19:00-23:00 (Chinese Standard Time: +6 hours from Paris)

Registration Onsite 100 EUR
Online 80 EUR (FREE for virtual fee registered GSC participants)

Preliminary speakers

Carlos Tucci
Jens R. Chapman
Michael Kanas
Wellington Hsu
C. Pierre
M. Hutton
A. Clarke
Karsten Wiechert
Asdrubal Favaligna
R. Oskouian
Marcelo Gruenberg

Preliminary schedule




Welcome, Introductions and Review of Program


The Sports and Spine Connection


Session 1: A big picture Sports & Spine overview


Conceptual approach to Spine injuries in Sports


Gamechanger: Head injuries in impact sports


Differences of Pro-athletes to ‘regular’ spine patients


Discussion and Take-home Messages

14:00-15:00 Session 2: Typical Sports & Spine conditions
14:00-14:30 Focus Spondylolysis
14:00-14:05 Case presentation
14:05-14:10 Rapidfire®: Optimal diagnostic pathway
14:10-14:15 Debate: Good nonop care for athletes is optimal
14:15-14:20 Debate: Timely well-performed surgery is the way to go
14:20-14:30 Resolution Case and discussion
14:30-15:00 Focus lumbar disc herniation / DDD
14:30-14:35 Case presentation
14:35-14:45 Rapidfire®: Optimal surgical care – endoscope, micro, MIS. What’s best for an athlete?
14:45-14:55 Rapidfire®: Lumbar Degenerative disc: fusion or ADR?
14:55-15:00 Discussion and Case resolution
15:00-15:15 Break: Stretch time and networking
15:15-16:00 Focus cervical disc herniations
15:15-15:20 Case presentation

Differentiating stingers, burners, radiculopathy, thoracic outlet, neuropathies. Helpful primer for surgeons and therapists

15:30-15:35 Rapidfire®: in favor of foraminotomies
15:35-15:40 Rapidfire®: in favor of ACDF’s
15:40-15:50 Rapidfire®: in favor of ADR’s
15:50-16:00 Resolution Case and discussion
16:00-16:30 Session 3: Catastrophic spine injuries
16:00-16:05 Case presentation
16:05-16:15 Asymptomatic severe cervical stenosis and collision / contact sports
16:15-16:25 SC Injury prevention—what works?
16:25-16:30 ALS and cervical spine concussive trauma: is there a connection?
16:30-17:00 Session 4: Big Picture Conclusions
16:30-16:40 Performing sports with scoliosis
16:40-16:50 Using Big Data in Sports and Spine for predictive modeling
16:50-17:00 Integrating Spine Care into Sports Medicine: a team approach
17:00 Adjourn