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treating the toughest spine case dr jian guan
October 19, 2022

Treating the Toughest Spine Cases | Dr. Jian Guan

by Anthony Effinger

The Think Neuro podcast from Pacific Neuroscience Institute takes you into the clinic, operating room and laboratory with doctors and surgeons who are tackling the most challenging brain diseases and disorders. Host: Anthony Effinger

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Episode 33: Show Notes

When he got out of medical school Dr. Jian Guan wanted to do pediatric neurosurgery, and he found a top-flight residency at the University of Utah. While there, though, his career took a turn, thanks to the Cheyenne Frontier Days, the world’s largest outdoor rodeo. Cheyenne is a small city, and Salt Lake City is the nearest center of excellence for spine surgery, so every summer, Dr. Guan, sadly, would see a surge in back injuries from rodeo accidents. He became interested in helping patients recover with the least invasive procedures possible. Historically, surgeons have been too quick to fuse patients’ vertebra, Dr. Guan says. It’s a major operation, and it’s not always necessary. Treating so many rodeo patients, Dr. Guan learned when surgery was necessary and when it wasn’t. Eager to hone his skills, Dr. Guan completed a fellowship in complex neurosurgical spinal surgery at the renowned Lahey Clinic in Massachusetts. Listen to this podcast to learn how he treats the toughest spine cases at Pacific Neuroscience Institute.

About Dr. Guan

Jian Guan MD, Spine Surgeon

Dr. Jian Guan is a fellowship trained neurosurgeon with a special focus on complex spine surgery at Pacific Neuroscience Institute. Dedicated to the care of patients with spine and neck conditions, he practices at PNI-South Bay / Spine Institute at Little Company of Mary in Torrance, California. With over 75 peer-reviewed publications, Dr. Guan has a particular clinical and research interest in ways of maximizing benefit to patients following neurosurgical procedures.

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About the Author

Anthony Effinger

Anthony Effinger

Think Neuro's host is Anthony Effinger, an award-winning journalist who is fascinated with neuroscience and the workings of the brain. Anthony spent 24 years at Bloomberg News, where he covered all aspects of finance, with forays into science and health. In 2006, the Association of Health Care Journalists awarded him first prize for Playing the Odds, an in-depth piece on the changing strategies used to treat prostate cancer. These days, he is a staff writer at Willamette Week, a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in Portland, Oregon, where he lives with his wife and two children.

Last updated: May 19th, 2023