Internationally renowned neurosurgeon Peter Warnke, MD, has performed more than 7,000 stereotactic surgeries and more than 3,000 brain tumor surgeries. Dr. Warnke provides neurosurgical care for the treatment of:
• Movement disorders (including Parkinson's disease, dystonia, torticollis, and tics), with particular expertise in pediatric dystonia, choreoathetosis, and cerebral palsy
• Pediatric epilepsy
• Primary and secondary brain tumors, including chiasmal/hypothalamic gliomas and craniopharyngiomas
• Pediatric brain tumors
He routinely performs neurosurgical procedures with proven expertise, including:
• Brain tumor surgery
• Epilepsy surgery
• Pediatric epilepsy surgery
• Deep brain stimulation (DBS)
• Endoscopic neurosurgery
• Stereotactic radiosurgery
• Motor cortex stimulation
• Radiofrequency lesioning
• Laser ablation
Dr. Warnke is one of less than a handful of neurosurgeons fellowship-trained in pediatric neurosurgery ,brain tumor surgery (neurooncology) and movement and epilepsy surgery,. He has treated one of the largest series of low grade gliomas in adults and children (more than 1,000) and intrinsic other brain tumors
In 2021, Dr. Warnke became the first neurosurgeon in Illinois — and only second worldwide —to perform laser hemispherectomy for the treatment of drug-resistant epilepsy in a child. This highly innovative surgical technique carries significantly lower risk of complications compared to the traditional open hemispherectomy procedure (Operative Neurosurgery, 2023).
Dr. Warnke directs the pediatric and adult epilepsy surgery program within the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center and the MRI-Guided Laser Ablation Program for epilepsy and tumors with more than 400 laser surgeries performed at the University of Chicago already.
Dr. Warnke has a large epilepsy surgery practice and performs open resections, laser ablations and neurostimulation for epilepsy in children and adults. This entails routinely robotic implantations of Stereo-EEG electrodes with image guidance and an intraoperative CT.
He directs the SLATE , NAUTILUS and RESPONSE trial in epilepsy surgery, investigating laser ablation and closed loop brain stimulation as a new minimally invasive alternative to open surgery. Also new biological treatments for epilepsy are explored using cell transplants to silence epileptic areas (Neurona Trial).
In addition, Dr. Warnke has a large deep brain stimulation practice for Parkinson’s, essential tremor and dystonia, and was the first neurosurgeon in Chicago to use directional deep brain stimulation.
Dr.Warnke also performs routinely psychiatric neurosurgery in collaboration with the ACID research group in the Department of Psychiatry predominantly for obsessive compulsive disorder and has the largest series of anterior capsulotomies performed by an interstitial laser technique (Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, 2022)
He has special expertise in stereotactic radiosurgery, including interstitial radiosurgery and stereotactically guided endoscopy which has been combined with image guidance and stereotactic targeting to reduce side effects and increase precision (World Neurosurgery 2020). He also provides care for patients with pain syndromes, including trigeminal neuralgia and neuropathic pain.
He is also researching the development of biological and minimally invasive treatments for epilepsy, movement disorders and brain tumors using functional imaging and fiber tracking to target deep seated, complex tumors.
Dr.Warnke’s research focusses on Brain -Computer Interface for the motor and sensory cortex and mechanisms of memory formation and is funded collaboratively by 4 NIH grants including the Brain Initiative (Proc Natl. Acad Sci, 2022).
Dr.Warnke studies the effect of laser energy on tumor permeability, blood flow and extracellular space in brain tumors and the effect of nuclear export proteins and their inhibition on recurrent malignant gliomas.
Dr. Warnke is the Associate Editor of the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, which has the highest impact factor among neurosurgical journals (Impact Factor 13.65) .