Jefferson University Hospitals

Spine Program

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Spine Program
  • Among the Nation's Best for Orthopedics
    Among the Nation's Best for Orthopedics
    U.S.News & World Report named Thomas Jefferson University Hospital among the best hospitals in the nation for Orthopedics.
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Any disease of the spine, whether a spinal tumor, deformity, stenosis, degenerative disc disease or other trauma requires expert care. At Jefferson Health, you can count on the highly experienced and trained intensivists, physiatrists, oncologists, orthopedists, neurologists, neurosurgeons and pain management specialists – to provide a full continuum of spine management.

Our renowned experts at Jefferson Health hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers have completed approximately 7,000 spine procedures. (Source: Jefferson internal data, 2017-2018.)

Jefferson is on the Forefront of Spinal Cord Injury Research

Jefferson Health researchers are the first in the country to enroll a patient in INSPIRE 2.0, which is designed to look at how effective an investigational implant is compared to today's standard of care.  

Spinal cord injuries are classified based on their severity. Unfortunately, the odds of a patient moving up the scale from the worst type of injury are only about 20 percent. In the first part of this study (INSPIRE 1.0), presented at the 2019 American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) Annual Scientific Meeting, seven of 16 people (or 44 percent) moved up the scale – meaning their condition improved – after six months. When researchers looked at their outcomes after 12 months, two of those six patients improved even more so, which is incredibly rare.

This is a significant result in clinical research, and is excellent news for patients with spinal cord injuries.

Complex Spine Care

Our neurosurgeons are part of a spine care program that has been recognized as a high-volume Center of Excellence for more than 30 years. The spine team is a leader in the treatment of spine injuries and diseases, with a particular focus on complex cases. Thomas Jefferson University Hospital is a highly regarded referral center for complicated spine cases, including emergency situations.

Our patients benefit from our Level 1 Trauma Center and a federally designated Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center, in affiliation with Magee Rehabilitation Hospital. Spine surgeons throughout Jefferson Health are experts in both urgent and non-urgent situations. When a spinal trauma patient is admitted to our Level I Trauma Center, our Spinal Cord Injury team immediately directs time-dependent efforts to stabilize and reverse any neurologic injuries.

In addition, our Jefferson Advanced Spine Center, located at Jefferson Methodist Hospital in South Philadelphia, is equipped with a pioneering robotic navigation system that offers real-time views of instrument positioning and screw placement, custom to each patient's anatomy.

The Jefferson Health Spine Program Advantage

The Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center of the Delaware Valley, in affiliation with Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, is designated as one of the nation's 14 Model Spinal Cord Injury Centers by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) in the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), and the only one in the Delaware Valley.

Visit the Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center of the Delaware Valley for additional information.

Request an Appointment

Call 1-800-JEFF-NOW (1-800-533-3669) to make an appointment with a Jefferson Health specialist of our Spine Program.

Program Leadership

    James S. Harrop, MD

    Academic Title: Professor
    Director, Division of Spine and Peripheral Nerve Surgery Co-Director Neurologic Surgery Quality and Safety Neurosurgery Director of Delaware Valley SCI Center

    View Dr. Harrop's profile »

    Alexander R. Vaccaro, MD,PhD

    Academic Title: Professor
    Richard H. Rothman Professor and Chairman, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
    President, Rothman Orthopaedic Institute
    Professor and Attending Surgeon of Neurosurgery, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
    Co-Director of Spine Fellowship Program, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
    Assistant Team Physician, Philadelphia Eagles

    View Dr. Vaccaro's profile »