PNA Spotlight: Dr. Mateo Ziu

Ziu MateoDr. Mateo Ziu is a neurosurgeon and the Director of Brain and Spine Neuro-Oncology Program at Seton Brain and Spine Institute in Austin, Texas. He is as well the Co-Director of the Multidisciplinary Pituitary Conference at the Network for Cancer Care at Seton Family of Hospitals.

He received his medical degree from the University of Bari Medical School in Bari, Italy. He completed his neurosurgery residency at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA),  and then a subspecialty fellowship in neurosurgical treatment of brain, spine and skull base tumors (including pituitary adenomas) at The UT at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. Dr. Ziu has published several scientific articles in multiple peer-reviewed journals.

What is the primary focus of your work/research?

My primary clinical focus is surgical treatment of tumors of the brain, spine and skull base including gliomas, meningiomas, pituitary adenomas and other lesions. Presently I am working to build a comprehensive and multidisciplinary program for treatment of brain and spine tumors and especially pituitary tumors in our community. My research focuses on developing evidence-based clinical pathways to deliver value-based care to our patients with tumors. I collaborate with scientists at UT Austin studying mechanisms of tumor progression and its detection by advanced imaging technology.

What do you consider to be the future of your field?

Technological innovations will certainly benefit the surgical field with new approaches that would make intervention safer and more precise. At the same time, these innovations will assist in the discovery of new molecular and genetic markers that will advance medical treatment for brain tumors further. In the future, treatment plans will be personalized for each patient based precisely on the molecular and genetic fingerprint of his or her tumor.

What should patients know about your field/what deserves more recognition/awareness?

Treatment of oncologic patients cannot be performed without integration of care and planning from a multidisciplinary team that centers on the patient with its disease fully considering its social and economic implications. This stands true especially for Pituitary adenomas, where from a very small gland a multitude of tumors with different molecular and clinico-pathological characteristics can develop.

What would you like to convey about yourself to your patients?

Pituitary tumors are such a diverse and complex disease, their treatment requires an integrated plan formulated by a well functioning multidisciplinary team. I strive to deliver excellent care for my patients throughout the course of their surgical and non-surgical treatment in collaboration with our team of pituitary adenoma specialists.

Why did you get involved with the PNA and what is the extent of your involvement?

I got involved with the PNA to connect with other leading physicians in the field of the pituitary tumors and help my patients affected by this disease find information that they need. I believe the PNA, through its members, provides sound and up-to-date information for patients with pituitary tumors. I hope in the future through the PNA, we will be able to build a web-based forum where physicians can discuss difficult cases and help all of their patients further.

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