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The Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas

Hi all,

In a previous post I mentioned that I was working at the Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas (INCN) in Lima, Peru, and I figured I’d show and tell you a little bit more about the hospital this week.


outside of the INCN (photo from

the entry courtyard of the INCN (photo from

The INCN was founded just over 315 years ago as a “Refuge for the Incurables,” a religious institution housing and caring for both children and adults in need.  It became a public charity under Lima’s government in 1862 and existed as such until 1937, when it was officially named a hospital.  Its jurisdiction was transferred to the Ministry of Health in 1975, and in 1981 it was designated an institute specialized in neurology.

The current Director of the INCN is Dr. Pilar Mazzetti, a neurologist by training who was formerly both Peru’s first female Minister of Health and first female Minister of the Interior.  This accomplished and progressive woman was kind enough to inaugurate our rehabilitation workshop in August, which I discussed here: http://final.localhost/amy-fuhs/2015/11/03/a-stroke-rehabilitation-workshop-in-lima-peru/.

Dr. Mazzetti giving opening remarks

As its name implies, the INCN treats a wide variety of neurological diseases.  In addition to the stroke unit and rehabilitation area, there are separate campus buildings dedicated to epilepsy, pediatrics, neurosurgery, and neurodegenerative diseases.  The Neurogenetics portion of the hospital researches Spinocerebellar Ataxias, Myotonic Dystrophy and Huntington’s Disease (HD) and cares for a large HD patient population, while Neuro-infectious Disease addresses illnesses ranging from encephalitis and Pott’s disease to HTLV and toxocariasis.


building housing the Neuro Intensive Care Unit and radiology

inside a unit for stroke patients

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

On its campus the INCN also has a brain museum with very interesting neuropathology and impressively-preserved specimens.

The INCN values teaching, training residents in neurology, and hosting rotations for medical, physical therapy, and nursing students.  It takes pride in organizing an annual three-day International Neuroscience Conference as well, at which IUSM’s Dr. Angela Carbone was able to speak this year.

Dr. Carbone fields questions at the 21st annual Curso Internacional de Neurociencias put on by the INCN

I’ll talk more about my projects at the INCN in a later post but for now will leave you with a nice view from my walk home :-)

Until next time,