J. Patrick Johnson, MD is a renowned neurosurgeon specializing in spinal disorders and has served as the Director of the Institute for Spinal Disorders at Cedars Sinai Medical Center since 2001and previously as the Director of the UCLA Comprehensive Spine Center from 1993-2001. He has also served as the Director of Education and Co-Director of the Spine Stem Cell Research Program at the Cedars Sinai Spine Center. Most recently Dr. Johnson has joined UC Davis Medical Center as a Volunteer Faculty Professor. He is now the Chairman and President of the Spine Institute Foundation that is non-profit education and research entity promoting education of future leaders in spinal surgery. He also serves as a Director for the California Association of Neurological Surgeons.
He was born and raised in Montana, the son of the first neurosurgeon in the northern Rocky Mountain five state region, and then obtained a degree in Chemistry with Honors at The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He then attained both his MD and Master’s degree in neuroanatomy and neurophysiology from the Oregon Health Sciences University in Portland, Oregon.
He served a surgical internship and neurosurgical residency training at UCLA. He was a Fellow at the University of Tennessee in spinal surgery and at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London, England. He was on the faculty at UCLA as the lead UCLA neurosurgical spine surgeon for a decade also establishing the neurosurgical spine fellowship training program at UCLA and also served as the Chief of Neurosurgery at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center. After being recruited to Cedars Sinai in 2001, he was the lead neurosurgeon in developing one of the largest spine surgery programs in the country that featured many state-of-the-art technologies and spinal surgeons in the program. He was instrumental in establishing the first truly combined neurosurgery and orthopedic fellowship program producing over 60 fellowship trained spine surgeons with many holding key leadership positions in the discipline of spinal surgery.
His research background for the past two decades has been involved in developing new surgical technical methodologies that have included computer guided surgical applications and procedures, endoscopic and minimally invasive surgical procedures and motion preservation procedures with artificial discs and other related procedures. These have included conducting FDA clinical trials for two artificial disc devices, numerous outcome studies, new product development, and as a consultant for research and development of new technologies. He has been involved in clinical research involving the biological aspects with specific interest in biological stem cell repair of spinal cord injuries. He was instrumental in establishing the basic science stem cell research and biomechanics laboratory at the Cedars Sinai Spine Center with a renowned international research faculty.
Dr. Johnson on the Dr. Phil Show
Dr. Johnson has been published in more than 500 manuscripts, abstracts and book chapters. Including numerous peer-reviewed journals, such as Spine, Neurosurgical Focus, Techniques in Neurosurgery, Neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery, Contemporary Neurosurgery and Journal of Spinal Disorders. He also serves on the editorial review boards of the World Journal of Surgery, Neurosurgical Focus, Surgical Neurology and The Spine Journal. A respected educator, Dr. Johnson actively participates in the training of post graduate surgeons and has served as the Director of the Orthopedic and Neurosurgical Spine Fellowship Program. In addition, Dr. Johnson lectures widely at national and international meetings on essentially all aspects of spinal disorders and emerging technologies.
His clinical experience from serving as Director of two leading academic institutions spine programs at UCLA and Cedars Sinai and over 7,000 surgical procedures has resulted in extensive expertise in essentially every aspect of spinal surgery including degenerative spinal disorders, traumatic spine and spinal cord injuries, spinal cord tumors and spinal column tumors, spinal infections, congenital spinal anomalies, spinal vascular malformations and spinal deformity disorders.
Dr. Johnson serves as Director of the California Association of Neurosurgeons, and he is an active member in many professional organizations including: The Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS), American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS), American College of Surgeons (ACS), North American Spine Society (NASS), American Medical Association (AMA), Los Angeles County Medical Association (LACMA), North American Skull Base Society (NASBS), American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Association of Spine Physicians, the Western Neurological Society ( WNS) and the Scoliosis Research Society ( SRS).
His outside interests include a second generation family ranching business in Montana, a founder of JS Rodeo Company that performs at major events throughout the United States, serving as a volunteer on the Justin Boots Sports Medicine program for professional rodeo athletes, and has served as a volunteer for Health Volunteers Overseas and the Foundation for International Education in Neurosurgery and the US Army Hospital in Landstuhl, Germany.