From the time of its initial, informal meetings starting in 1980 to its formal creation in 1990, the IRSSD has met on a bi-annual basis to discuss all aspects of the spine and associated deformities. It has encouraged open discussion on all topics and, in particular, has tried to be the seed-bed for new ideas. The members are spread around the world and include people from all areas of academia as well as the most important people, the patients themselves. Most notably, application of the ideas and results of the research has always been at the forefront of the discussions. This paper was conceived with the idea of evaluating the impact made by the IRSSD over the last 30 years in the various areas and is intended to create discussion for the upcoming meeting in Montreal regarding future focus: "We are lost over the Atlantic Ocean but we are making good time."
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