Ronald H. Spiro was born in New York City on August 17, 1930. A cum laude graduate of State University of New York College of Medicine at Syracuse in 1955, he completed one year of rotating internship at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. A four year residency in general surgery at The Bronx Veteran’s Hospital was followed by a two year stint with the Air Force in Morocco, ending his tour as the commanding officer of the 3922nd USAF Hospital near Casablanca.
From 1962 through 1965, Dr. Spiro trained as a fellow in surgical oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and then commenced solo private practice in New York City. During the ensuing seven years, he held teaching appointments at the Mount Sinai Medical Center and New York Medical College, and organized head and neck clinics in 2 different municipal hospital centers. After1972, when he made a full-time commitment to Memorial Hospital, he remained active on the Head and Neck Service as an Attending Surgeon and Professor of Clinical Surgery at Cornell Medical College until he retired in January 2000. Dr. Spiro was a frequent contributor to the head and neck literature.
Numerous papers attest to his long standing interest in the management of salivary gland tumors and their clinical staging. He popularized the gastric pull-up procedure, which he first performed at Memorial Hospital in 1973. His early reports on the sizeable Memorial experience with the mandibulotomy approach to oral and oropharyngeal tumors stimulated interest in other centers.
Dr. Spiro’s achievements as an educator and clinician have been recognized by his peers, as witnessed by his inclusion in a listing of the 400 best cancer specialists in the U.S.A. which first appeared in the October 1992 issue of Good Housekeeping magazine. He was active on the Executive Council and several committees of the Society of Head and Neck Surgeons, and also was a member of the Society of Surgical Oncology for many years, In 1990-91 he served as president of the New York Head and Neck Society. Dr. Spiro was co-editor of Current Concepts in Head and Neck Surgery, a unique collaborative effort between the Society of Head and Neck Surgeons and the American Society for Head and Neck Surgery published in 1989. It was during the 1997-1998 academic year, when he was president of the Society of Head and Neck Surgeons, that the two national societies finally combined to form what became known as the American Head and Neck Society.
“Verrucous Carcinoma, Then and Now” »
by Ronald H. Spiro, MD