Quality In and Out of the OR

The team is strong when all its players are at the top of their game. At Safe Passage Neuromonitoring, we know that having both members of the team be as sound as possible is the only model that should exist. Our team of highly skilled neurophysiologists are expertly trained in their craft. Additionally, we have a team of remote physicians who are available in real-time for clinical consultation on every single case.

Quality Assurance & Risk Management (QARM)

Our QARM program was implemented with the goal of defining and exceeding best-practices. In healthcare, it is important to collect quality measures in order to demonstrate efficacy, identify trends and constantly hone clinical services to evolve with the needs of our surgeons. SPN has made a commitment to identify and mitigate the risks involved with care, allowing the clinical focus to remain on patient safety and optimal outcomes.

Research & Publications

At SPN we take great pride in the contributions we make to the profession.  We are always looking for opportunities to collaborate in clinical research, publications, and speaking engagements. The following are a select listing of recent projects by the SPN clinical team:

Chaudhary K, Speights K, McGuire K, White AP. Trans-cranial motor evoked potential detection of femoral nerve injury in trans-psoas lateral lumbar interbody fusion. J Clin Monit Comput. 2015 Jun 17. [Epub ahead of print]

Martin, E., Doan, A.T., (2014, in publication). Intraoperative Monitoring During Spine Surgery. In A.R. Vaccaro, J.D. Koerner, D.H.Kim (Eds.), Recent Advances in Spine Surgery (1st Edition), pages TBS. 

Doan, A.T., Vogel, R.W., and Sestokas, A.K. (2013, in publication). Intraoperative Neuromonitoring during Spine Surgery. In A.R. Vaccaro, B.W. Su, K. Chiba et al (Eds.), The Spine (1st Edition), pages TBD.

Lang, M.J., Doan, A.T., Harrop, J.S. (2013, in publication). Cauda Equina Monitoring. In C.H. Loftus (Ed), Intraoperative Neuromonitoring. Chapter 38, pages TBD

Singh, H., Lober, R.M., Vogel, R.W., Doan, A.T., Matsumoto, C.I., Kenning, T.J. & Evans, J.J. (Submitted, 2015). Intraoperative Neurophysiological Monitoring for Extended Endonasal Approaches to the Skull Base: A Technical Guide.

Vogel, R.W., Amundson, J.C., Lindquist, D.H., & Steinmetz, J.E. (2009).  Eyeblink conditioning during an interstimulus interval switch in rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) using picrotoxin to disrupt cerebellar cortical input to the interpositus nucleus.  Behavioral Neuroscience, 123(1), 62-74.

Lindquist, D. H., Wheat, E., Vogel, R.W., & Steinmetz, J.E. (2008).  Associative and non-associative blinking in classically conditioned adult rats.  Physiology and Behavior. 96(3), 399-411.

Vogel, R.W., Green, J.T. & Steinmetz, J.E. (2004). Post-training inactivation of the cerebellar interpositus nucleus disrupts performance of the classically conditioned eye-blink response and some learning-related activity of Purkinje cells in the anterior cerebellar cortex.  Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science, 39(1), 76-77.

R. Buchli, A. Ndoye, J. G. Rodriguez, S. Zia, R. J. Webber and S. A. Grando:  Human Skin Fibroblasts Express m2, m4, and m5 Subtypes of Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors.  Journal of Cellular Biochemistry 74:264-277 (1999)

V T. Nguyen, T X Lee, A Ndoye, L D. Shultz, M R Pittelkow, M V Dahl, P J. Lynch and S A. Grando: The pathophysiological Significance of Non-desmoglein antibodies in pemphigus autoimmunity: Target on Keratinocytes Cholinergic Receptors. Archiva of Dermatology. 1998 Arch Dermatol. 1998; 134:971-980

Cheung ATW, Young LJT, Chen PCY, Chao CY, Ndoye A, Barry PA, Muller WJ and Cardiff RD:  Microcirculation and metastasis in a new mammary tumor model system.  International Journal of Oncology.  1996.  11:69-77.

Heiss C, Horas U, Kilian O, Popa RB and Schnettler R. “Biorigid interlocking after unreamed intramedullary nailing of tibial shaft fractures” Unfallchirurg 2002 Sep; 105(9): 797-803

Andalib P.. Wood M.J.. Korn S.J. Control of our vestibule dynamics and current magnitude in the Kv2.1 potassium channel. Journal of General Physiology 2002 Nov: 120(5):739-755

Trapani J.G.. Andalib P.. Consiglio J.F.. Korn S.J. Control of single channel conductance in the outer vestibule of the Kv2.1 potassium channel. Journal of General Physiology 2006 Aug. 128(2):231-246.

Stern, Jack; Whelan, Margaret A.; and Correll, James W.: Spinal Extradural Meningiomas. Surgical Neurology 14: 155‑159, 1980.

King, Lucille W.; Molitch, Mark E.; Gittenger, John W.; Wolpert, Samuel M.; and Stern, Jack: Cavernous Sinus Syndrome Due to Prolactinoma: Resolution with Bromocriptine. Surgical Neurology, 19: 280‑284, 1983.

Stern, Jack: Neurological Evaluation and Neurological Sequelae of the Spinal Cord Injured Patient. IN: The Spinal Cord Injured Patient. Comprehensive Management, Ed: Lee, B.Y.; Ostrander, L.E.; Cochran, G.V.; Shaw, W.W.; Saunders, Phil. 1991, pp 115-123.

Schirmer, Clemens M., Shils, Jay L., Arle, Jeffrey E., Cosgrove, G. Rees, Dempsey, Peter K., Tarlov, Edward, Kim, Stephan, Martin, Christopher J., Feltz, Carl, Moul, Marina, Magge, Subu. “Heuristic map of myotomal innervation in humans using direct intraoperative nerve root stimulation.”  Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine. April 2011

Li Huang, M.D., Ph.D., Jeffrey Oppenheim, M.D., Daniel E. Spitzer, M.D., G. Alexander Jones, M.D., Jeffrey W. Degen, M.D. Multimodality Intraoperative Neurophysiologic Monitoring During Microsurgical Resection of Cervical and Thoracic Spine Tumors: Analysis of 28 Consecutive Cases and Results. The 24th Annual Meeting, American Society of Neurophysiologic Monitoring. May 2-5, 2013. Boston, MA.  

Li Huang, MD, Ph.D., Jeffrey Oppenheim, MD, G. Alexander Jones, MD, Jeffrey W. Degen, MD. Intraoperative D Wave Monitoring During Intramedullary Tumor Resection Utilizing a Subdural Contact Strip Electrode – A Report of 3 Cases. The 23th Annual Meeting, American Society of Neurophysiologic Monitoring. May 4-6, 2012. Salt Lake City, Utah.     

Li. Huang, Ph.D. CNIM, G. Alexander Jones, M.D., Daniel E. Spitzer, M.D., DABNS, Jeffrey S. Oppenheim, M.D. DABNS , Jeffrey W. Degen, M.D. DABNS.  Multimodality intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring during cervical spine surgery: analysis of 261 consecutive cases.  The 21th Annual Meeting, American Society of Neurophysiologic Monitoring. May 13-15, 2010. Nashville, Tennessee.    

Goto, Y, Tseng, K.Y., Lewis, B.L. and O’Donnell, P. Dopamine modulation of prefrontal cortical neural ensembles and synaptic plasticity: Potential involvement in schizophrenia. In: Prefrontal Cortex: from Synaptic Plasticity to Cognition. S. Otani, Ed. Kluwer Academic Publishers, (2004) 61-84.

Lewis, B.L. and O’Donnell, P. Blockade of the GlyT1 glycine transporter prolongs response to VTA stimulation in nucleus accumbens neurons. In: Glutamate and Disorders of Cognition and Motivation. B. Mogghadam and M.E. Wolf, Eds. New York Academy of Sciences, Vol 1003 (2003) 431-434

O’Donnell, P., Lewis, B.L., Weinberger, D.R., and Lipska, B.K. Neonatal hippocampal damage alters electrophysiological properties of prefrontal cortical neurons in adult rats. Cerebral Cortex 12 (2002) 975-982.

Abstracts and Poster Papers:

Bhalodia VM, Sestokas AK, Glassman D, Loftus W, Levin S, Contratti J, Vogel RW, Sharan AD (2013).  Use of Intraoperative Collision Testing versus Electromyography for Predicting Postoperative Foot Paresthesias During Spinal Cord Stimulation. Congress of Neurological Surgeons, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Bhalodia VM, Sestokas AK, Glassman D, Loftus W, Levin S, Contratti J, Vogel RW, Sharan AD (2012).  Use of Intraoperative Collision Testing versus Electromyography for Predicting Postoperative Foot Paresthesias During Spinal Cord Stimulation. Annual Meeting of the North American Neuromodulation Society: Las Vegas, NV, USA.

Lewis, B.L., Lipska, BK, Weinberger, DR, O’Donnell, P. Neonatal hippocampal damage alters physiological properties of the mesocortical system in adult rats. Soc. Neurosci. Abstr. 27 (2001) 876.14

Lewis, B.L., Lipski, W.J., Weinberger, D.R., Lipska, B.K. and O'Donnell, P. A neonatal hippocampal lesion increases VTA cell firing in adult rats. Soc. Neurosci. Abstr.26 (2000) 1224.

Speights, Katharine. NASS Spine Summit 2012, Scoliosis Research Society, 2012 – Efficacy of TceMEP during transpsoas LLIF.

Speights, Katharine. NASS 2011- A new testing method for accuracy of percutaneous pedicle screw placement.

Certification & Training

The IONM community is comprised of many different backgrounds, each of which brings unique strengths to the field.  At SPN, a large portion of our team of neurophysiologists have advanced or terminal degrees in the health sciences. Many of these members possess the D.ABNM, the highest credential awarded in IONM. 100% of our clinical staff is CNIM credentialed or is eligible to sit for the examination. We tap into the knowledge of each team member per their educational background to create clinical best-practices and core knowledge.

Continuing Education

Healthcare is fluid and ever changing, and IONM is no exception.  We not only strongly encourage our clinical team to participate in as much continuing education as possible, we also teach a lot of it. SPN has expertise to lend to the clinical field, and our people have been invited by hospitals, nursing groups and the IONM community to speak as part of continuing educational events. We regularly attend and present at industry conferences and encourage our team to participate in talks, poster presentations or roundtable discussions.

One (Growing) Team

SPN takes great pride in its staff retention.  We have dedicated a major part of our mission to quality of life and have afforded our clinical staff a work-life balance that allows them to remain focused and refreshed.  In an industry with rapid turnover, we are committed to providing a familiar, local team to our surgical partners, thereby creating familiarity and trust. We proudly boast an unprecedented 95% retention rate in an industry with considerable turnover numbers.

Care You Can Trust

Providing quality care, meeting the needs of our surgeons, and our commitment to providing a familiar, local team have allowed us to forge lasting clinical partnerships. Our dedication to our partners’ satisfaction, dependability and 24/7/365 capabilities ensures that we will always be there when there is a need. Our key to surgeon retention is simple: we take great care of our surgeons' patients by delivering the highest quality service with a clinician that they know and trust. 


The dynamic nature of the operating room demands a flexible team that can adapt to an ever-changing schedule. At SPN, we understand the importance of anticipating the needs of the hospital and have a “PlusOne” policy with many of our busier partners that makes sure that we are ready when the schedule inevitably changes. This policy allows us to cover add-on cases, schedule changes and emergency situations without delay.