Department of Neurosurgery @ Ospedale San Raffaele

The Neurosurgery Unit provides comprehensive services for the diagnosis, treatment and surgical management of the main conditions affecting the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves. The department is an internationally-recognized centre for brain tumour treatments. It is a national reference centre in the treatment of pituitary and of the cranial base tumours (meningiomas, chordomas, craniopharyngiomas, etc.).

Microsurgery and stereotaxic radiosurgery with Gamma Knife are frequently integrated.  Patients are followed by a multidisciplinary group of neurosurgeons, endocrinologists, neuro-radiologists, neuro-ophthalmologists, ENT surgeons, and radiotherapists to offer optimal treatment. Malformations and tumours of the brain and spinal cord are also treated in children and adolescents.

The Neurosurgery Unit has achieved various milestones in its clinical activities. In October of 2018, for the first time in Europe, a complete micro-neurosurgical correction of spina bifida was performed. A multidisciplinary team, under the coordination of Professor Pietro Mortini, Head of the Department of Neurosurgery, and Professor Massimo Candiani, Head of the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, collaborated to achieve a comprehensive correction of this congenital malformation. They employed advanced micro-neurosurgery instruments to meticulously reconstruct the malformed anatomical structures.

Subsequently, in September 2020, a historic milestone was reached with the world's first successful neurosurgical removal of a brain tumor, specifically a meningioma, utilizing a robotoscope — an advanced 3D robotic digital visualization device under digital control. This groundbreaking procedure was conducted by Professor Pietro Mortini and his dedicated team. The patient received the diagnosis two months before the surgery and was discharged from the hospital after the operation, marking a significant advancement in neurosurgical techniques.

Read moreRead less

Our excellence in numbers


brain tumours


cases of meningioma


cases of pituitary tumours, craniopharyngioma and other sellar region tumours


cases of aneurysms and vascular malformation

Notable advanced technological equipment

  • Gamma Knife radiosurgery equipment
  • O.T. Bi-dimensional and Tri-dimensional endoscopy
  • Intraoperative brain mapping  
  • Intraoperative ultrasound       
  • Intraoperative neurophysiology   
  • Neuronavigation and stereotaxis 

Do you need an appointment?

Contact us and we will take care of you.

Meet our team

Head physician

Pietro Mortini

Pietro Mortini

Featured physicians

Ospedale San Raffaele

The San Raffaele Research Hospital is a highly specialized multi-disciplinary medical center of world importance, which embodies the integrity of the treatment, clinical research and teaching activities. San Raffaele provides treatment in all existing medical fields, which allows this center to take care of the most complex patient cases. The Hospital is recognized as IRCCS (Scientific Institute for Research and Healthcare) for its research in molecular medicine and innovative treatments application, such as the gene therapy.

The hospital is a multi-specialty center with more than 50 clinical specialties available and with over 1600 beds; it is accredited by the Italian National Health System to provide care to both public and private, Italian and international patients. In 2018 the San Raffaele Hospital performed over 51,000 patient admissions, 72,000 emergency room encounters and delivered over 1.5 million outpatient medical services. It is widely regarded as the most celebrated hospital in the country and among the most reputable medical centers in Europe. San Raffaele’s wards and operating theatres are equipped with the most advanced machines, such as PET, PET/CT, Gamma Knife, Cyber Knife, Rapid Arc, Tomotherapy. San Raffaele’s Radiotherapy Unit was the first place in Europe to install Tomotherapy in 2004. Nowadays this Unit confirms to be one of the most experienced worldwide; it has developed numerous protocols for cancer treatment of the prostate, breast, central nervous system, brain, liver, pancreas, gastrointestinal tract, lungs, and others. The Oncological Board of the Hospital consisting of diagnosticians, clinical oncologists, immunologists, surgeons and radiotherapists, hold weekly meetings to discuss oncological patients’ pathways in a multidisciplinary manner.

Beside its Cancer Center, San Raffaele is well-known for its medical know-how in cardiology and cardiac surgery, neurology and neurosurgery, gastroenterology and gastrointestinal tract surgery, liver surgery, pancreas surgery, transplant medicine, gynecology and obstetrics, urology, dermatology, ophthalmology, immunology, rheumatology and pediatrics.

San Raffaele is a pioneer in the field of gene medicine and treatment of rare immunologic and genetic diseases. San Raffaele Scientific Institute is where the first in the world gene therapy with stem cells was created, named Strimvelis, for patients affected by ADA-SCID syndrome.

The Research at the San Raffaele Hospital focuses on integrating basic, translational and clinical research to provide the most advanced care to the patients. It counts on over 1,500 scientists, working in state-of-the-art facilities covering a surface of 130,000 square meters, and have produced over 1,446 scientific publications in 2018. Research at San Raffaele aims at understanding the mechanisms underlying a variety of important human diseases and at identifying new targets and new therapeutic strategies to treat them.

The San Raffaele Hospital hosts the Università Vita-Salute San Raffaele, a fully private university with a complete Medical School (including specialty courses and residencies), Nursing School, a Psychology graduate and post-graduate programs, and Allied Health Professions School. The mission of the Vita-Salute San Raffaele University is to answer the question "Quid est homo?" in the belief that the human being is a biological, psychological and spiritual unicum. Since 2010 the San Raffaele Hospital also hosts the International MD Program, the only graduate program accredited to license Medical Doctors in both Europe and North America.


Explore other Departments of Ospedale San Raffaele