Chapter History

In 1953, the IFCN accepted as Affiliated Societies the Spanish, Italian, Danish, Dutch, Swedish, Belgian, Swiss, Japanese and German Societies and the first multinational society, the South American (later Latin American) Society; however its activities started in 1958 with meetings of several Latin American countries and also Spain and later Portugal. 

The last President of this first epoch was Dr. Rodrigo Londoño (Colombia), who died suddenly so young, leaving LAS without leadership. Even the files got lost and the LAS remain inactive for years. By 1978 the participation of the Latin American Society would be suspended because of non-dues payment for more than a decade. This inactivity and according to the IFCN By-Laws, motivated  the LAS definitive expulsion in 1985 General Assembly.

A new era began in 1988, when it was proposed at the IFCN Executive Committee meeting to create regional chapters to give geographycal representation to the IFCN ExCo. Folowing this idea, the XII International Congress of EEG and Clinical Neurophysiology was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in January 14-19 1990, as a demonstration of support for Clinical Neurophysiology in Latin America.

In 1993 the IFCN World Congress was held at Vancouver, Canada. The European Chapter was already working and the Asian Chapter was in consolidation. The Latin-America countries were invited to reactivate the LAC and Dr. Nelly Chiofalo (Chile), Dr. Pedro Ponce (Venezuela) and Dr. Mario Shkurovich (México) were in charge of the project. The rules for the Regional Chapters were accepted and also the establishment of the three first Chapters: European, Latin American and Asian. An IFCN ExCo member was appointed as Liaison Member to each Chapter; Dr. Gastone Celesia was designed for Latin American Chapter.

By 1994 Argentinian, Brazilian, Chilean, Dominican, Mexican and Uruguayan Socities were independent member societies of the IFCN.

During the American Academy of Neurology Congress at New York, Dr. Chiofalo and colleagues got contact with Dr. Salguero (Guatemala), President of the Panamerican Neurology Congress, to be held in 1995 at Guatemala. The idea was to have the first LAC meeting back to back with the Panamerican Neurology Congress. Dr. Marc Nuwer served as liason member with the IFCN. The Congress was successful with about 500 attendants. The scientific program included lectures by Dr. Lücking, Dr. Celesia, Dr. Fernando Torres, Dr. Hans Lüders, and Dr. José Ochoa, among others. A complete evening was dedicated to workshops and practical lessons with several professors demonstrating different techniques while the delegates rotated in groups.

At the business meeting the member societies elected Nelly Chiofalo (Chile) as first Chapter Chairperson and Enrique Delamonica (Argentina) as First Chapter Secretary-Treasurer. They were asked to draft LAC By-Laws for presentation at the next meeting, scheduled to be held in conjuntion with the 1997 World Congress of Neurology in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The Brazilian Society of Clinical Neurophysiology volunteered to host the Chapter’s administrative office in the the same site as its own Society office in Sao Paolo. By-Laws were translated from Spanish to Portuguese by Francisco Luccas and Jose Xavier de Castro (Brazil). Due the success of the first meeting, the LAC integration to the IFCN was aproved during the World IFCN Congress at Kyoto in 1995. In1997 Dr. Chiofalo and Dr. Pedro Valdés (Cuba) started writing the Statutes that rule LAC today. 

The II LAC meeting was also organized by Dr. Chiofalo in collaboration with Dr. Ana Pardal, and Dr. Ricardo Reisin y Dr. Enrique Delamonica. They were part of the World Neurology Congress Organizing Committe to be held at Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1997. Once again both meetings were held back to back. Dr. Carlos Medina (Argentina) was elected second President of the LAC Executive Committee. Dr. Daniel Cibils (Uruguay) was selected as Secretary-Treasurer and Dr. Jose Heleodoro Xavier de Castro (Brasil) and Dr. Pedro Valdés Sosa (Cuba) were designated Members at Large. At that time it was proposed to organize the 3rd Latin American Congress of Clinical Neurophysiology in Cartagena de Indias, Colombia in 1999, however, logistic trouble made the congress impossible. 

Other academic activities and scientific meetings sponsored by IFCN-LAC began in 2000 with a LAC Symposium: Occipital Lobe Function in October at Buenos Aires, Argentina. A Chapter Business Meeting was also held and Francisco Luccas (Brazil) was elected Secretary-Treasurer and Olga Sanz (Argentina) was elected Member-at-large. Chapter’s By-Laws were approved and submitted to IFCN Executive and Rules Committees. The By-Laws were written in Spanish, Portuguese and English.    

Eleven years after the first time, the XVth International Congress of Clinical Neurophysiology was held in South America, this time at Buenos Aires, Argentina, in May 16-20, 2001. Daniel Cibils (Uruguay) was elected Chapter President and Augusto Fernández-Guardiola (México) elected Member-at-large. 

The III Latin American Congress of Clinical Neurophysiology was held in Porto Seguro, Brazil in September 2002. Renato Verdugo (Chile) was elected LAC Secretary-Treasurer and Marc Nuwer was designed IFCN Liaison Member for LAC. 

The IVth Latin American Congress of Clinical Neurophysiology was held in Santiago, Chile in October 2004. Jose Xavier de Castro (Brazil) was elected LAC President. During this fiscal term 2 new Societies were admitted: Guatemala and Colombia ACME. Current IFCN-LAC members are: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia ACME, Colombia ACNC, Cuba, México, Perú, Dominican Republic, and Uruguay.

In 2006 Daniel Cibils, by the time IFCN ExCo Secretary ,was designed IFCN Liaison Member for LAC. The First Latin American Symposium on Intraoperatory Neurophysiological Monitoring was held in Montevideo, Uruguay in April 2007. Alberto Yorio (Argentina) was elected as LAC Secretary-Treasurer. 

The Vth Latin American Congress of Clinical Neurophysiology was succesfuly held in Puebla, México in October 2008 and the Second Latin American Symposium on Intraoperatory Neurophysiological Monitoring at Porto Alegre, Brazil in May 2009. Renato Verdugo (Chile) was elected LAC President and Jorge Gutiérrez (Colombia) Treasurer.  

The most recent LAC scientific meeting was the VIth Latin American Congress of Clinical Neurophysiology in Punta del Este, Uruguay in October 2011. Jorge Burgos (México) was elected LAC Secretary. 

Sources: Information written by Dr. Nelly Chiofallo (RIP), founderess and first LAC-IFCN ExCo President and “Wave Lenght and Action Potentials, IFCN History” Supplement to Clinical Neurophysiology, edited by Dr. Marc Nuwer

LAC President

Dra Nelly Chiofalo Santini (Chile): 1995-1997
Dr. Carlos Medina (Argentina): 1997-2000
Dr. Daniel Cibils Ferrari (Uruguay): 2000-2004
Dr. José Heleodoro Xavier de Castro (Brasil): 2004-2009
Dr. Renato Verdugo Latorre (Chile): 2009-2013

LAC Secretary/Treasurer

Dr. Daniel Cibils Ferrari (Uruguay): 1995-1999
Dr. Francisco José Carchedi Luccas (Brasil): 1999-2002
Dr. Renato Verdugo Latorre (Chile): 2002-2006
Dr. Alberto Yorio (Argentina): 2007-2009

LAC Treasurer

Dr. Jorge Eduardo Gutiérrez Godoy (Colombia) 2009-2013

LAC Secretary

Dr. Alberto Yorio (Argentina): 2009-2011
Dr. Jorge Burgos Centeno (México): 2011-2015