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Neurology Asia Pays Tribute to Dr. Simeon Marasigan

DR. SIMEON MINA MARASIGAN

(1949 – 2020)

Dr. Simeon Mina Marasigan was born in the plains of Isabela, a province in northern Philippines on April 21st, 1949. He completed his primary education at San Manuel Central School in his home province and secondary education at the La Sallete in the province of Aurora. He pursued his Bachelor Science Degree at the University of Santo Tomas and medical education at the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery in the same university; earning his degree as Doctor of Medicine in 1976. He took residency training in Neurology and Psychiatry at the Santo Tomas University Hospital which he completed in 1982. He pursued his fellowship training in Dementia at Hyogo College of Medicine in Osaka, Japan. Dr. Marasigan was the first Filipino neurologist to train in this sub-specialty. He went back to the Philippines in 1984 to take the Specialty Board Examination in Neurology becoming the 40th fellow of the Philippine Neurological Association. He was likewise a fellow of the Philippine Psychiatric Association. He was appointed Training Offi cer of the Department of Neurology in Jose R. Reyes Memorial Medical Center from 1989 to 2004, later becoming assistant chairman from 2005-2013. He became President of the Philippine Neurological Association (PNA) in 1995, where he initiated the PNA Midyear convention. In that same year Professor Marasigan also became the first Chairman of the ASEAN Neurological Association (ASNA) (1994-1995). He was instrumental in the formation of the Stroke Society of the Philippines. In 1999, he was elected as president of the Philippine Psychiatric Association. In 2002, he supplemented his training in Dementia at the Alzheimer’s Disease Center of the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.

Professor Marasigan’s passion for memory-related disorders led him to establish the Dementia Society of the Philippines in 2002 where he served as President until 2016. He was one of the founding members of the Asian Society Against Dementia in 2006 and served as a member of the Executive Committee representing the Philippines.

Dr. Marasigan was chairman of the Department of Neurology & Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery from 2004 to 2010 and in the University Hospital from 2004-2009 in the UST, Manila, Philippines. He retired with the rank of Professor II in 2015. On February 23, 2019, Dr. Marasigan founded and launched VasCog Philippines despite his illness. Even until his last breath, Simeon continued his affaire de coeur with the Neurosciences, particularly dementia, a lifelong passion.

Professor Marasigan was a towering figure in Philippine Neurology and Psychiatry but to many, he was “Tito Mon” (Uncle Mon) or simply “Dr. M”. He embodied many things to many people whose lives were touched and influenced dearly. He was simple, kind-hearted, witty, humble, caring; above all, a loving son, self-less uncle, true friend, assiduous mentor, tenacious scholar and a magnanimous leader. To quote St. Thomas Aquinas, “Better to illuminate than merely to shine, to deliver to others contemplated truths than merely contemplate”. Professor Marasigan is an icon of the neurosciences whose life, vision and footpaths not only illuminated but conveyed contemplated truths that will be celebrated long after his passing.

Johnny K. Lokin MD, Arnold Angelo M. Pineda MD

Access the document at Neurology Asia 2020; 25(2) : 231

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On June 5, 2002 the Dementia Study Group was formed with the objective of conducting monthly scientific meetings on issues concerning cognitive impairment and dementia.