Back Pain

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Surgeons Who Treat Back Pain

Primary care physicians are often the first to treat symptoms of back pain. However, it is important to be evaluated at an advanced spine center as soon as possible, since early and expert intervention can keep some conditions, like compression fractures, spinal stenosis, and herniated discs from getting worse.

The medical team at the Weill Cornell Medicine Center for Comprehensive Spine Care — expert spine surgeons along with their team of physicians, nurses, physical therapists, and pain management specialists — provide comprehensive, integrated care for patients with pain associated with conditions of the spine. Patients receive a complete continuum of care, from diagnosis to treatment and recovery.

We generally begin with nonsurgical, noninvasive treatment options. For patients who do need surgery, we offer the latest in minimally invasive surgical techniques, using state-of-the-art equipment. Patients recover faster, have less pain, and get back to their normal daily activities sooner than they could with older surgical methods.

Our neurosurgical faculty includes some of the very best world-renowned specialists. At the new midtown east Center for Comprehensive Spine Care are:

Dr. Roger HartlRoger Härtl, M.D., named as one of the top 50 spine surgeons in the United States, is Director of the Weill Cornell Medicine Center for Comprehensive Spine Care and Director of Spinal Surgery and Neurotrauma at the Weill Cornell Brain and Spine Center. He’s also the official neurosurgeon for the New York Giants. Dr. Härtl's clinical and research expertise is in simple and complex spine surgery, neurotrauma, and neurocritical care medicine. Dr. Härtl believes that surgery for herniated discs should be a part of a multidisciplinary approach to treatment, and he works very closely with other specialists in a team effort to achieve the best outcome for his patients. (Read more about Dr. Härtl.)

Dr. Eric ElowitzEric Elowitz, M.D., is a board-certified neurosurgeon specializing in minimally invasive spinal surgery. Routinely named to national lists of top doctors, Dr. Elowitz is dedicated to providing   state-of-the-art care with individual attention to each patient’s unique needs. Dr. Elowitz has developed a special expertise in new XLIF (lateral-access) procedures. (Read more about Dr. Elowitz.)

Dr. Kai-Ming FuKai-Ming Fu, M.D., Ph.D., obtained his undergraduate degrees from Stanford University and his medical and graduate training in the MD/PhD program at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Fu specializes in minimal access surgery as well as having advanced training in reconstructive, deformity,   and oncological spine surgery. (Read more about Dr. Fu.)

Dr. Ali A. BaajDr. Ali Baaj is a board-certified neurosurgeon who specializes in spinal surgery, with advanced training and expertise in spinal oncology and complex reconstructive surgery for spinal deformity. He is accomplished in both minimally invasive spinal surgery and open complex spine surgery, having had formal training in both orthopedic and neurosurgical spine surgery. (Read more about Dr. Baaj)

At our main campus on East 68th Street:

Dr. Athos PatsalidesAthos Patsalides, M.D., is board-certified in Radiology and is an assistant professor of Radiology in Neurological Surgery at Weill Cornell Brain and Spine Center. Dr. Patsalides specializes in the treatment of vascular diseases of the brain and spine, and is expert in minimally invasive procedures for spine compression fractures (kyphoplasty, vertebroplasty) for patients with osteoporosis, multiple myeloma, and spinal tumors. (Read more about Dr. Patsalides.)

In our Lower Manhattan spine center:

Dr. Samuel C. KimDr. Samuel C. Kim is a board-certified neurosurgeon who has been in practice for 10 years. Dr. Kim has expertise in complex spinal surgery, brain tumors, peripheral nerve surgery, and vascular diseases of the brain and spine — including aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations, carotid occlusion, and stroke. (Read more about Dr. Kim.)