Spine Surgery


More than back surgery — total spine care

The pain and stress of dealing with a back condition can make it hard to live the way you'd like. The doctors of the Spine Surgery Program at Tufts Medical Center in downtown Boston are highly experienced in treating patients with spinal conditions ranging from tumors to spinal stenosis.

Our team includes some of the best neurosurgeons in the country. However, we oversee, prescribe and manage both surgical and nonsurgical treatments — whatever it takes to make you feel better. And, we work with our colleagues in Physiatry, Pain Management and Orthopedics in the Tufts MC Spine Center to ensure that you receive the best possible treatment for your unique spine condition.

The Spine Surgery Center offers a full spectrum of diagnostic and treatment options for people with back problems, such as:

  • Herniated discs
  • Primary and metastatic spine tumors
  • Back pain from conditions such as spinal stenosis
  • Back trauma and spinal cord injury

Personalized care for your spine

We understand treatment plans are not one-size-fits-all. Many of our patients come to us believing surgery is their only option. They're surprised — and relieved — to learn we treat the majority of patients without surgery.

For example, physical therapy is often effective for patients with chronic back pain. Or, patients with tumors may be candidates for painless, noninvasive treatment at our Gamma Knife Center. We work closely with Tufts MC specialists in oncology, rheumatology and pain management to make sure you're getting the most effective treatment for you.

What if I need back surgery?

If your condition does require surgery, you're in good hands at the Spine Surgery Center.

Our physicians specialize in minimally invasive techniques, and we'll select the least disruptive route possible to the site of your surgery. The incisions we use to treat many common conditions, such as spinal tumors and herniated discs, can be over 50 percent smaller than conventional surgical incisions — sometimes as small as the tip of your finger. As a result, you'll experience less pain and a faster recovery.

Minimally invasive surgery is better for our patients, so we've dedicated an operating room to the technology. This state-of-the-art suite has features like high-definition endoscopes and ceiling-mounted screens so doctors can observe procedures from every angle. Working like a GPS for the human body, our cutting-edge frameless stereotactic surgical system helps us achieve new standards of accuracy during surgery. Most importantly, our neurosurgeons have the knowledge and experience to use minimally invasive technology to provide the best treatment for you.

For patients undergoing traditional open spine surgery, our neurosurgical intensive care unit has experienced staff dedicated to helping patients recover safely and comfortably from the most complex surgical procedures.

Doctors + Care Team

James Kryzanski, MD

James Kryzanski, MD

Title(s): Chief, Division of Epilepsy Surgery; Co-Chief, Division of Spinal Surgery; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Neurosurgery
Appt. Phone: 617-636-8585
Fax #: 617-636-7587

Epilepsy neurosurgery, skull base surgery, pituitary surgery, neurovascular surgery, minimally invasive spine surgery, neurosurgical disorders in patients with achondroplasia, neurosurgical disorders in patients with Down syndrome

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Ron I. Riesenburger, MD

Ron I. Riesenburger, MD

Title(s): Director, Spine Center; Co-Chief, Division of Spinal Surgery; Neurosurgeon; Associate Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Neurosurgery
Appt. Phone: 617-636-8484
Fax #: 617-636-7587

Minimally invasive spine surgery, spinal deformity and scoliosis, complex and reconstructive spine surgery

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Simcha J. Weller, MD

Simcha J. Weller, MD

Title(s): Neurosurgeon; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Neurosurgery
Appt. Phone: 617-636-8686
Fax #: 617-636-7587

Complex and reconstructive cervical spine surgery, spinal microsurgery, surgical treatment of cervical spondylotic myeloradiculopathy, cervical spine trauma

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Simcha Weller, MD on video.

Spinal Stenosis

Neurosurgeon, Simcha Weller, MD discusses how this degenerative condition occurs and how conservative therapy and surgery may be options for treatment.

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