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October 20 - 21, 2023 | Minneapolis Hilton

Uzma Samadani, MD, PhD, FACS, FAANS
President and CEO, US Neurosurgery Associates

Minnesota SCI Advisory Council Presentation Panel

Uzma Samadani is a private-practice neurosurgeon in Minneapolis MN and researcher at the University of Minnesota.  She moved to Minneapolis in 2015 and has been named to the Minneapolis St-Paul Magazine’s “Top Doctors in Neurosurgery” list 4 times.  In 2018 she was on the cover of the “Top Doctors” edition with the byline “The Doctor Will Save You Now.”  In 2018 she also was awarded the “Courageous Woman in Healthcare” award by the Women’s Health Leadership Trust.  Minnesota Monthly has twice dubbed her a “Top Doctor in Minnesota”. She has clinical expertise in both cranial and spinal surgery. She has performed one of the most extensive spine tumor resections documented in the scientific literature (5 tumors removed in a 25 hour surgery from a 15 year old girl, who remains tumor-free more than 5 years later). Dr. Samadani was a Principal Investigator and the primary neurosurgeon for the Estand trial which was performed in conjunction with colleagues at the University of Minnesota. She has performed numerous successful epidural spinal cord stimulation surgeries in people who are paralyzed to restore movement in their lower extremities as well as other spinal cord functions. Many of these patients have recovered spontaneous volitional movement and several can now walk with assistance or assistive devices. In her current practice she has operated on patients with spinal cord injury from 7 different states, all of whom travel to Minnesota for her expertise.

Dr. Samadani is an Associate Professor in the Department of Bioinformatics and Computational Biology at the University of Minnesota with a graduate faculty appointment in Neuroscience. She is also an attending neurosurgeon at the Minneapolis Veterans Administration Medical Center and founder of the neurodiagnostic start-up Oculogica Inc, which has developed the first baseline free concussion diagnostic cleared for marketing approval by the FDA. She holds multiple patents related to brain injury, its treatment and its consequences. She has been named one of the “Most Creative People in Business” by Fast Company magazine.

She is on the Executive Committee of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons/Congress of Neurological Surgeons Joint Section on Neurotrauma and Critical Care and served as Scientific Program Chair for their meeting in conjunction with the National Neurotrauma Society from 2014-7. She also served as Chair of the Board of ThinkFirst Foundation from 2019 to 2021. She is past Chair of the Minnesota State Traumatic Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Research Program and a Past-President of Women in Neurosurgery. She serves on the permanent council of the G4 Alliance, which serves the needs of the neglected surgical patient, and she has a strong interest in methods for achieving equitable neurotrauma care. She has received more than six million dollars in research grants from national and international competitive funding agencies to study diagnostics, risks, outcomes and treatments for brain and spinal cord injury.  She has been funded by the United States Veterans Administration, Department of Defense, National Space and Biomedical Research Institute, Abbott Diagnostic Laboratories, American College of Surgeons, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Thrasher Research Fund, Integra, the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Foundation and several other organizations.

She is certified by the American Board of Neurological Surgeons and a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and American Association of Neurological Surgeons. Her research on brain injury has been discussed in the New York Times, LeMonde, LeFigaro, Wired, Washington Post, Sports Illustrated, Forbes, and Minneapolis Star Tribune as well as numerous other media sources. She has been a speaker at TedMed, the North American Brain Injury Society, National Neurotrauma Society, American Association of Neurological Surgeons meeting and multiple other conferences. She has published 70 peer-reviewed scientific papers and an additional 30 reviews and chapters including in the Journal of Neurotrauma, JAMA Neurology, Journal of Neurosurgery and the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Samadani also served as an unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant to the National Football League from 2015 to 2018.