10 Spine and Neurosurgeon Inventors

Written by Laura Dyrda | July 12, 2011 | Print  |
Here are 10 spine and neurosurgeons who have invented and hold patents for spine devices.

Edward Benzel, MD (Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland). Dr. Benzel holds at least nine patents for devices, including a cervical spine stabilization method and system and a spinal column retaining apparatus. He is chairman of the Cleveland Clinic's department of neurosurgery. His clinical interests focus on spinal disorders, complex spine instrumentation and spine tumors. He is one of the founding members of the Lumbar Spine Research Society, which formed in 2007. He is chairman of the review board for the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine and has reviewed for Spine, The Spine Journal and other publications. Dr. Benzel is medical co-director of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation Spine Research Laboratory. Dr. Benzel earned his medical degree from the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, where he also completed his residency in neurosurgery. He received fellowship training in spine surgery and spinal cord injury at VA Medical Center in Albuquerque.

Scott Boden, MD (Emory Healthcare, Atlanta).
Dr. Boden holds at least six different patents for medical devices and his research focuses on spine fusion, spinal disorders and bone regeneration. He is the director of Emory Healthcare's orthopedics and spine center as well as chairman and founder of the National Spine Network. More than 150 of Dr. Boden's journal articles have been published, and he has authored or edited more than 42 book chapters and nine books on spine topics. His research on the fundamental mechanisms of bone growth and regeneration has been awarded by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, North American Spine Society, International Society for Study of the Lumbar Spine and other professional organizations. He earned his medical degree at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia, completed an internship at George Washington University Medical Center in Washington, DC, and received fellowship training at Case Western Reserve University Hospital in Cleveland.

Robert S. Bray, Jr., MD (Diagnostic and Interventional Spinal Care, Marina del Rey, Calif.).
Dr. Bray has contributed to more than 20 patents, including a cervical dynamic stabilization system, SmartPlate spinal implant and a slidable bone plate system. He is the founding director and CEO of his practice, Diagnostic and Interventional Spine Care. He was chief of neurosurgery for the U.S. Air Force at David Grant Medical Center in 1989 and the founding director of the Institute for Spinal Disorders at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Dr. Bray has served as spine consultant for the U.S. Men's volleyball team and the Oakland Raiders, among other professional athletic organizations. After he received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Dr. Bray completed his residency at Baylor Affiliated Hospitals, also in Houston.

Charles R. Gordon, MD (Texas Spine and Joint Hospital, Tyler).
Dr. Gordon has contributed to the development of several patented devices, including an artificial functional spinal unit system and an expandable articulating intervertebral implant. He founded the device company Flexuspine along with his practice, Gordon Spine Associates, based in Tyler, Texas. He is a co-founder of Texas Spine and Joint Hospital and a member of the North American Spine Society and American Association of Neurological Surgeons, among other professional organizations. He received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and completed his residency and fellowship at The Medical College of Virginia.

Regis W. Haid, Jr., MD (Atlanta Brain and Spine Care, Atlanta). Dr. Haid holds multiple patents for implants used during cervical lateral mass plating, anterior cervical plating, posterior and transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion and cervical arthroplasty. He is a founding partner of Atlanta Brain and Spine Care and medical director of the Piedmont Spine Center and neuroscience service line at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta. Dr. Haid has traveled internationally to present at spine conferences, including visits to Italy, Russia and Switzerland. He was previously the staff neurosurgeon for the U.S. Air Force at Wilford Hall Medical Center in San Antonio. Dr. Haid earned his medical degree from West Virginia University in Morgantown, where he also completed his neurosurgical residency. He received fellowship training in spinal disorders at the University of Florida College of Medicine.

Ken Y. Hsu, MD (St. Mary's Spine Center, San Francisco). Dr. Hsu is co-inventor – with James F. Zucherman, MD, also at St. Mary's — of the X Stop Interspinous Process Decompression System, which alleviates the symptoms of lumbar spinal stenosis. The process, FDA-approved in 2005, was first in the category of interspinous process devices. Dr. Hsu, who holds 43 patents, has been the director of spine surgery at St. Mary's Medical Center since 1988 and is a member of the clinical faculty at Stanford University. He received his medical degree from State University of New York, completed a residency in general surgery at Mt. Zion Hospital in San Francisco and an orthopedic surgery residency at St. Mary's. He completed a fellowship in spine and pediatric orthopedic surgery at the University of Hong Kong.

Isador Lieberman, MD (Texas Back Institute, Plano). Dr. Lieberman holds multiple patents for his technological innovations, including SpineAssist, a robotic tool he recently co-developed for use during minimally invasive spine surgery. He has held appointments with Cleveland Clinic as staff surgeon and professor of surgery at Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. His developments have been recognized with awards from Cleveland Clinic and the Spine Society of Europe. He recently co-founded the Uganda Charitable Spine Surgeon Mission, with which he accompanies a team of surgeons to visit Uganda each year to treat the underprivileged with spine conditions. He earned his medical degree from the University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada, and completed his residency at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto. He also completed residency programs in orthopedic surgery at two Toronto hospitals along with a clinical fellowship in spine and trauma surgery at The Toronto Hospital.

Kenneth A. Pettine, MD (Rocky Mountain Associates, Loveland, Colo.).
Dr. Pettine is co-inventor and co-designer of the Maverick Artificial Disc, a disc replacement device for the neck and back. He is a co-founder of Rocky Mountain Associates and a surgeon at Loveland (Colo.) Surgery Center. During his career, Dr. Pettine has been chief investigator for eight FDA studies involving non-fusion spine technology. He is a distinguished speaker at national and international symposiums and the author of nearly 20 research publications. He received his medical degree from the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver. He completed his residency and his master's degree in orthopedic surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and completed a fellowship at the Institute for Low Back Care in Minneapolis.

David G. Schwartz, MD (OrthoIndy Northwest, Indianapolis).
Dr. Schwartz is the inventor of the Anteres Spinal Instrumentation System, which is used for the treatment of spinal fractures, scoliosis and tumors. During his career, Dr. Schwartz's clinical interest have included spinal deformities, kyphosis, scoliosis and low back pain. He is the director of OrthoIndy's Spine Fellowship and an assistant clinical professor in the department of orthopedic surgery at Indiana University in Bloomington. He earned his medical degree from Loyola University in Chicago, completed a residency in orthopedic surgery at Northwestern University in Chicago and received fellowship training in spine surgery at the Leatherman Spine Center, Kosair Childrens Hospital and the University of Louisville, all located in Louisville, Ky.

Anthony T. Yeung, MD (Desert Institute for Spine Care, Phoenix).
Dr. Yeung developed the FDA-approved Yeung Endoscopic Spine System, and was one of the first spine surgeons to utilize endoscopically-guided laser for degenerative conditions of the lumbar spine. During his career, Dr. Yeung has authored more than 70 scientific publications on his technique. He is currently the president of the World Congress of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgeons and has held leadership positions within numerous other national and international spine organizations. Dr. Yeung received his medical degree from University of New Mexico School of Medicine in Albuquerque, completed his residency at Maricopa County General Hospital in Phoenix and served in the U.S. Navy Medical Corp in Subic Bay, Philippines.

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