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This entire special issue of Global Spine Journal is devoted to one topic: “Rare Complications of Cervical Spine Surgery.” This was a combined effort of some of the leading cervical spine surgeons in North America, who pooled their clinical data for this project. Fortunately, these are complications that most surgeons will never experience, since they are, by definition, rare. But because of their rarity, there are few references to guide the unfortunate surgeon who experiences one of these complications. As such, we believe that it is the most comprehensive and up-to-date information on the topic. We would like to express our deep gratitude to AOSpine North America (AOSNA), whose generous grant funded the project. AOSNA is the North American Chapter of AOSpine International, “the leading global academic community for innovative education and research in spine care,” with more than 6000 spine surgeon members. A special thanks to Jens Chapman, the past-past Chair of AOSNA, who was quick to see the relevance and importance of this topic and spearheaded the approval process for the funding. On behalf of all the authors who contributed to the issue, we hope that none of the readers ever have to experience one of these complications, but if they do, we believe that the information in this special issue will be of some assistance. On a personal note, I would like to thank all the authors whose hard work and dedication over the past several years made this issue possible.
K. Daniel Riew, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA. New York-Presbyterian/The Allen Hospital, New York, NY, USA.