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18 Spine Specialists Focused on Spinal Cord Injury Featured

Written by  Laura Miller and Heather Linder | Friday, 23 November 2012 02:21
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Here are 18 spine specialists focusing on spinal cord injury. If you would like to recommend a spine specialist for our list, contact Laura at lmiller@beckershealthcare.com.
Dirk H. Alander, MD (Saint Louis University). Dr. Alander is chief of spine surgery as well as an associate professor of spinal deformity and reconstruction at Saint Louis University. He is a member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, North American Spine Society and American Spinal Injury Association. During his career, Dr. Alander has published several articles in professional journals, such as Spine and the Journal of Spinal Disorders & Techniques. In addition to his clinical interests, Dr. Alander has worked on clinical trails for spine devices and is trained in the X-Stop, Charite artificial disc and Kyphon Inflatable Bone Tamp Technology. Dr. Alander earned his medical degree at the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Rockford and completed his residency at in the Grand Rapids (Mich.) Orthopaedic Surgery Program at the former Blodgett Memorial Medical Center. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery and spinal cord rehabilitation at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield.

David F. Apple Jr., MD (Shepherd Center, Atlanta).
Dr. Apple is the medical director emeritus of the Spinal Cord Program at Shepherd Center, with a focus on spinal cord research. During his career, Dr. Apple has written several articles on appropriate care for spinal cord injury patients and has held academic appointments at Emory University and Georgia State University in Atlanta. He also served as a team physician for the Atlanta Hawks basketball team and as chief medical officer of the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games. Dr. Apple has received the American Spinal Injury Association Lifetime Achievement Award and the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. He has also served as president of the American Spinal Injury Association and founded the Orthopaedic Rehabilitation Association. In addition to his professional leadership, Dr. Apple has been the principal investigator on several grants associated with spinal cord injury research. Dr. Apple earned his medical degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia. His additional training includes residencies at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta and University Hospital, Inc., in Cincinnati, as well as fellowships at the University of Louisville (Ky.) Hospital and Lac/Rancho Amigos National Medical Center in Downey, Calif.

Randall M. Chestnut, MD (Harborview Medical Center, Seattle). Dr. Chestnut is a neurosurgeon with a professional interest in traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, as well as sports-related brain and spine injuries. His research interests include early mobilization from acute spinal cord injuries and targeted therapy for managing traumatic brain injury. He recently received funding from the National Institute of Health for outcome studies in brain and trauma care systems in Latin America. Dr. Chestnut has also been a leader in developing the evidence-based practice guidelines for traumatic brain injury and spine surgery. Dr. Chestnut earned his medical degree from the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle and completed his residency and fellowship at the University of California in San Diego.

Barth A. Green, MD (University of Miami Miller School of Medicine).
Dr. Green is the co-founder and chairman of the department of neurological surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He has a professional interest in complex spinal cord injuries and disorders. During his career, he helped found the first state-wide care system for patients with spinal cord injury and co-founded The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, a comprehensive spinal cord injury and paralysis research center. In addition to his clinical practice, Dr. Green has focused on research into spinal cord injury and paralysis. He earned his medical degree at Indiana University in Bloomington, where he worked with paraplegics in the spinal cord research laboratory. His additional training includes a residency in neurological surgery at Northwestern University in Chicago.

Michael H. Haak, MD (Northwestern University, Chicago). Dr. Haak is the president-elect and director of the American Spinal Injury Association. He is also an orthopedic spine surgeon at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine with a special interest in spinal reconstruction, spinal cord injury and cervical and lumbar disc degeneration. During his career, he has also served as a Board of Specialty Societies representative to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Dr. Haak earned his medical degree from Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and completed his residency at Brooke Army Medical Center at Fort Sam in Houston. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at Northwestern.

James S. Harrop, MD (Jefferson University Hospitals, Philadelphia).
Dr. Harrop is a co-associate director of Acute Care at the Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center of the Delaware Valley and associate professor of neurosurgery at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. He spends time working on clinical trials for spinal cord injury patients and is the principle investigator on several studies for SCI patients, including stem cell therapies. In addition to his clinical work, Dr. Harrop has published and presented his work on spinal cord injury research in several professional venues. He serves on the executive board of the Congress of Neurosurgeons and is a member of North American Spine Society, Cervical Spine Society and American Association of Neurological Surgeons. Dr. Harrop earned his medical degree at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, where he also completed his residency. His additional training includes a fellowship at Cleveland Clinic.

Glenn R. Rechtine, MD (University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, N.Y.).
Dr. Rechtine has a professional interest in caring for patients with spinal disorders, such as herniated discs and spinal trauma. He is a past president and member of the board of directors of the American Spinal Injury Association as well as a member of the executive committee of the Cervical Spine Research Society. His leadership also includes spending time as a reviewer for several journals, such as Spine and the Journal of Orthopaedic Trauma. He was also named reviewer of the year for The Spine Journal in 2006. Previously, Dr. Rechtine served as the director of spine surgery and director of orthopedic research at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Dr. Rechtine earned his medical degree at the University of South Florida College of Medicine in Tampa and completed his residency in orthopedic surgery at Naval Hospital of Portsmouth Virginia. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at University Hospitals of Cleveland.

Alexander R. Vaccaro, MD, PhD (Rothman Institute, Philadelphia).
Dr. Vaccaro is a spine surgeon at Rothman Institute, co-associate director for Acute Care at Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center of the Delaware Valley and co-director of reconstruction spine services at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. He also serves as a co-director of the spine fellowship at Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Vaccaro's current research involves the timing of surgery after traumatic spinal cord injury, regeneration of the degenerated intervertebral disc and the use of alternative bone graft substitute during spinal fusion. In addition to his research, he has also been involved in the development of spinal implants for traumatic degenerative disorders of the spine. During his career, he has authored several professional publications and served as president of the American Spinal Injury Association. Dr. Vaccaro earned his medical degree at Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C., and completed a residency in orthopedic surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at the University of California in San Diego.

Wise Young, PhD, MD (NYU Langone Medical Center, New York City).
Dr. Young is a surgeon at NYU Langone Medical Center, the director of the W. M. Keck Center for Collaborative Neurosciences and a professor at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. He was a member of a team that discovered and established high-dose methylprednisolone as the first effective therapy for spinal cord injuries, which paved the way for further research and development. He also developed the first standardized rat spinal cord model that is used for testing therapies, formed a National Institute of Health-funded consortium for testing the therapies and helped establish clinical outcome measures in spinal cord injury research. In addition to his clinical work, Dr. Young founded and served as editor in chief of the Journal of Neurotrauma and organized the National and International Neurotrauma Societies. Dr. Young earned his doctorate at the University of Iowa in Iowa City and completed his medical degree at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif. His additional training includes an internship at Bellevue (Neb.) Medical Center. He previously served as the director of neurosurgery research at New York University.

Jack Zigler, MD (Texas Back Institute, Plano).
Dr. Zigler is a spine surgeon at Texas Back Institute and past president of the American Spinal Cord Injury Association. He has also served on the board of directors of ASIA and as president of the Federation of Spine Associations. During his career, he has held several leadership positions within American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and North American Spine Society. In addition to his work with professional societies, Dr. Zigler has also served as editorial board member of the Journal of Spinal Disorders & Techniques as well as associate editor of Spine Arthroplasty Society Journal. He has participated in spine- and spinal cord injury-related conferences around the country. Dr. Zigler earned his medical degree at SUNY Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse, N.Y., and completed his residency in orthopedic surgery at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

Trevor Dyson-Hudson, MD (Kessler Foundation, West Orange, N.J.).
Dr. Dyson-Hudson is the interim director of spinal cord injury research and outcomes and assessment research at Kessler Foundation Research Center. He is also an assistant professor at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation and a member of the American Spinal Injury Association and United Spinal Association. Dr. Dyson-Hudson conducts clinical spinal cord injury research and is the principal investigator on a number of grants. His research interests include restoration of function and mobility in persons with spinal cord injuries and the prevention and treatment of common secondary medical complications affecting this population. Dr. Dyson-Hudson received his medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he also completed an internship. He completed a research fellowship in physical medicine and rehabilitation from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and the Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Stroke and Neurological Disorders at Kessler.

Lawrence C. Vogel, MD (Rush Medical Center, Chicago).
Dr. Vogel is the associate editor of Topics in Spinal Cord Rehabilitation and the president of the American Spinal Injury Association. He has been the chief of pediatrics at the Chicago Shriners Hospitals for Children since 1981 and the medical director of the spinal cord injury program since its inception in 1983. He is also a professor of pediatrics at Rush Medical College and the assistant chief of staff of medicine at Shriners. He is board certified in pediatrics with a subspecialty in spinal cord injury medicine. Dr. Vogel has also been a member of the board of directors of the American Paraplegia Society since 1998. In 2012, he became a council member of the International Spinal Cord Society, and he is a chairman of the steering committee of the Consortium for Spinal Cord Medicine.

Jonathan Slotkin, MD (Geisinger Health, Danville, Pa.).
Dr. Slotkin is a neurosurgeon with advanced training in brain and spinal surgery. His clinical interests include complex spinal surgery to degenerative conditions and spinal oncology. He is active in research related to spinal cord injury, neural regeneration and nanotechnology. He has published many peer-reviewed publications and co-edited a two volume publication on spinal surgery. Dr. Slotkin is the director of spinal surgery at Geisinger Neuroscience Institute and director of spinal cord injury research. He was the 2005 recipient of the Apfelbaum Award for basic science research from the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, and he's a member of the scientific advisory board of InVivo Therapeutics. He received his medical degree from the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He completed a complex spinal surgery fellowship with Eric Woodard, MD, and completed a neurosurgical residency at Harvard Medical School.

J. Patrick Johnson, MD (Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles).
Dr. Johnson is a neurosurgeon at Cedars-Sinai Spine Center in Los Angeles. Prior to joining Cedars-Sinai he served as the chief of neurosurgery at the University of California Los Angeles Medical Center and the lead neurosurgical spine surgeon at UCLA. He has conducted trials and outcome studies with an interest in biological stem cell repair of spinal cord injuries. He worked to establish a basic science stem cell research and biomechanics laboratory at Cedars Sinai. Dr. Johnson's clinical experience includes more than 6,000 surgical procedures for disorders including spinal cord injuries, degenerative spine, traumatic spine, tumors, infections, congenital spinal anomalies and more. He earned his medical degree from Oregon Health Science University in Portland, Ore., and served a surgical internship and neurosurgery residency at UCLA. He completed fellowships in spinal surgery at the University of Tennessee and the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London. Dr. Johnson serves as the director of the California Association of Neurosurgeons, and is active in organizations, which include The Congress of Neurological Surgeons, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, American Association of Spine Physicians and more.

Nicholas Theodore, MD (Barrow Neurological Associates, Phoenix).
Dr. Theodore is a neurosurgeon with a focus on complex spinal disorders and spinal cord injuries and the chief of spinal surgery at Barrow Neurological Institute. He has published many articles and book chapters on the subjects, and he was a senior investigator in a multi-center study testing a new medication for spinal cord injury. He also received a National Institute of Health grant to study spinal injuries and novel approaches to spinal surgery. His clinical specialties include neurological trauma surgery, complex spinal surgery and peripheral nerve surgery. Dr. Theodore received his medical degree from Georgetown University School of Medicine and completed an internship at the National Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. He completed a neurological fellowship at Barrow.

Graham Creasey, MD (Stanford Medicine, Palo Alto, Calif.).
Dr. Creasey is the chief of spinal cord injury service at VA Palo Alto Health Care System and a professor of neurosurgery at Med Center Line. His current research interests are restoration of function after spinal cord injury, using information technology and biotechnology. He received a grant from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research for his project "Northeast Ohio Model Spinal Cord Injury System." His research on various subjects has been published in many peer-reviewed journals and book chapters. Dr. Creasey, in conjunction with Gary Steinberg, MD, has started The Spinal Cord Injury and Repair Program at Stanford School of Medicine to help patients reclaim some abilities. He is a fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. He completed several surgery residencies in Europe, as well as a spinal paralysis and spinal surgery unit at Edenhall Hospital in Edinburgh.

Alberto A. Martinez-Arizala, MD (University of Miami Health System).
Dr. Martinez-Arizala is the chief of spinal cord injury service at Miami VA Medical Center. He is also an associate professor of neurology and has several publications based on his work. His research focuses on spinal cord injury, pain and spasticity. He is a member of the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. Dr. Martinez-Arizala earned his medical degree at the University of Miami School of Medicine and completed his internship at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. He also completed a residency at Letterman Army Medical Center.

Jeffrey Berliner, DO (The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research Memorial Hermann, Houston).
Dr. Berliner is the clinical director of the spinal cord injury unit at The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research. His research focuses on exoskeleton technology for the recovery of motor function in patients with spinal cord injury as well as pain management, stem cell therapy and treadmill therapy with patients. In addition to his clinical work, Dr. Berliner holds positions with the American Spinal Injury Association and National Spinal Cord Injury Association. He earned his osteopathic medicine degree at Nova Southeastern University and completed a fellowship in physical medicine and rehabilitation at Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine at New York University. He completed a second fellowship in SCI medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.

Last modified on Friday, 23 November 2012 02:46
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