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Christopher P. Ames, MD


Associate Professor, Department of Neurological Surgery, UCSF; Director, UCSF Spine Tumor and Spinal Deformity Surgery

Phone: (415) 353-7500 (neurosurgery); (866) 817-7463 (spine center)
Box 0112, UCSF
San Francisco, CA 94143-0112

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Additional Websites


Dartmouth College, BA, 1989
University of California, Los Angeles, MD, 1994
University of California, San Diego, 1994-1995, Surgical Internship
University of California, San Diego, 1995-2000, Resident, Neurological Surgery
Barrow Neurological Institute, Phoenix, Arizona, 2001-2002, Spine Fellow

Professional Experience

  • 2002-present
    Department of Neurological Surgery, UCSF

Honors & Awards

  • 1989
    Cum Laude, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH
  • 1994
    Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society, University of California, Los Angeles
  • 2001
    Chairman's Prize, University of California, San Diego
  • 2005
    ISSLS Award
  • 2010
    50 of the Best Spine Specialists in America
  • 2010
    America's Top Surgeons, Castle Connolly

Selected Publications

  1. Schwab F, Blondel B, Chay E, Demakakos J, Lenke L, Tropiano P, Ames C, Smith JS, Shaffrey CI, Glassman S, Farcy JP, Lafage V. The comprehensive anatomical spinal osteotomy classification. Neurosurgery. 2014 Jan; 74(1):112-20.
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  2. Su BW, Shimer AL, Chinthakunta S, Salloum K, Ames CP, Vaccaro AR, Bucklen B. Comparison of fatigue strength of c2 pedicle screws, c2 pars screws, and a hybrid construct in c1-c2 fixation. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2014 Jan 1; 39(1):E12-9.
    View on PubMed
  3. McCarthy IM, Hostin RA, O'Brien MF, Fleming NS, Ogola G, Kudyakov R, Richter KM, Saigal R, Berven SH, Ames CP. Analysis of the direct cost of surgery for four diagnostic categories of adult spinal deformity. Spine J. 2013 Dec 1; 13(12):1843-8.
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  4. Maruo K, Ha Y, Inoue S, Samuel S, Okada E, Hu SS, Deviren V, Burch S, William S, Ames CP, Mummaneni PV, Chou D, Berven SH. Predictive factors for proximal junctional kyphosis in long fusions to the sacrum in adult spinal deformity. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Nov 1; 38(23):E1469-76.
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  5. Abdul-Jabbar A, Berven SH, Hu SS, Chou D, Mummaneni PV, Takemoto S, Ames C, Deviren V, Tay B, Weinstein P, Burch S, Liu C. Surgical site infections in spine surgery: identification of microbiologic and surgical characteristics in 239 cases. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Oct 15; 38(22):E1425-31.
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  6. Smith JS, Lafage V, Ryan DJ, Shaffrey CI, Schwab FJ, Patel AA, Brodke DS, Arnold PM, Riew KD, Traynelis VC, Radcliff K, Vaccaro AR, Fehlings MG, Ames CP. Association of myelopathy scores with cervical sagittal balance and normalized spinal cord volume: analysis of 56 preoperative cases from the AOSpine North America Myelopathy study. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Oct 15; 38(22 Suppl 1):S161-70.
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  7. Shamji MF, Ames CP, Smith JS, Rhee JM, Chapman JR, Fehlings MG. Myelopathy and spinal deformity: relevance of spinal alignment in planning surgical intervention for degenerative cervical myelopathy. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Oct 15; 38(22 Suppl 1):S147-8.
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  8. Ames CP, Blondel B, Scheer JK, Schwab FJ, Le Huec JC, Massicotte EM, Patel AA, Traynelis VC, Kim HJ, Shaffrey CI, Smith JS, Lafage V. Cervical radiographical alignment: comprehensive assessment techniques and potential importance in cervical myelopathy. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Oct 15; 38(22 Suppl 1):S149-60.
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  9. Terran J, Schwab F, Shaffrey CI, Smith JS, Devos P, Ames CP, Fu KM, Burton D, Hostin R, Klineberg E, Gupta M, Deviren V, Mundis G, Hart R, Bess S, Lafage V. The SRS-Schwab adult spinal deformity classification: assessment and clinical correlations based on a prospective operative and nonoperative cohort. Neurosurgery. 2013 Oct; 73(4):559-68.
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  10. Feldman WB, Clark AJ, Safaee M, Ames CP, Parsa AT. Tumor control after surgery for spinal myxopapillary ependymomas: distinct outcomes in adults versus children: a systematic review. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013 Oct; 19(4):471-6.
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  11. Scheer JK, Tang JA, Smith JS, Klineberg E, Hart RA, Mundis GM, Burton DC, Hostin R, O'Brien MF, Bess S, Kebaish KM, Deviren V, Lafage V, Schwab F, Shaffrey CI, Ames CP. Reoperation rates and impact on outcome in a large, prospective, multicenter, adult spinal deformity database: clinical article. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013 Oct; 19(4):464-70.
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  12. Tarapore PE, Modera P, Naujokas A, Oh MC, Amin B, Tihan T, Parsa AT, Ames CP, Chou D, Mummaneni PV, Weinstein PR. Pathology of spinal ependymomas: an institutional experience over 25 years in 134 patients. Neurosurgery. 2013 Aug; 73(2):247-55; discussion 255.
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  13. Ha Y, Maruo K, Racine L, Schairer WW, Hu SS, Deviren V, Burch S, Tay B, Chou D, Mummaneni PV, Ames CP, Berven SH. Proximal junctional kyphosis and clinical outcomes in adult spinal deformity surgery with fusion from the thoracic spine to the sacrum: a comparison of proximal and distal upper instrumented vertebrae. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013 Sep; 19(3):360-9.
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  14. Ames CP, Smith JS, Scheer JK, Shaffrey CI, Lafage V, Deviren V, Moal B, Protopsaltis T, Mummaneni PV, Mundis GM, Hostin R, Klineberg E, Burton DC, Hart R, Bess S, Schwab FJ. A standardized nomenclature for cervical spine soft-tissue release and osteotomy for deformity correction: clinical article. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013 Sep; 19(3):269-78.
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  15. Clark AJ, Ziewacz JE, Safaee M, Lau D, Lyon R, Chou D, Weinstein PR, Ames CP, Clark JP, Mummaneni PV. Intraoperative neuromonitoring with MEPs and prediction of postoperative neurological deficits in patients undergoing surgery for cervical and cervicothoracic myelopathy. Neurosurg Focus. 2013 Jul; 35(1):E7.
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  16. Scheer JK, Tang JA, Smith JS, Acosta FL, Protopsaltis TS, Blondel B, Bess S, Shaffrey CI, Deviren V, Lafage V, Schwab F, Ames CP. Cervical spine alignment, sagittal deformity, and clinical implications: a review. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013 Aug; 19(2):141-59.
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  17. Schwab FJ, Blondel B, Bess S, Hostin R, Shaffrey CI, Smith JS, Boachie-Adjei O, Burton DC, Akbarnia BA, Mundis GM, Ames CP, Kebaish K, Hart RA, Farcy JP, Lafage V. Radiographical spinopelvic parameters and disability in the setting of adult spinal deformity: a prospective multicenter analysis. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Jun 1; 38(13):E803-12.
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  18. Acosta FL, McClendon J, O'Shaughnessy BA, Koski TR, Ondra SL, Koller H, Meier O, Neal CJ, Ames CP. Deformity surgery. Response. J Neurosurg Spine. 2013 Apr; 18(4):415-6.
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  19. Scheer JK, Ames CP, Deviren V. Assessment and treatment of cervical deformity. Neurosurg Clin N Am. 2013 Apr; 24(2):249-74.
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  20. Akbar M, Terran J, Ames CP, Lafage V, Schwab F. Use of Surgimap Spine in sagittal plane analysis, osteotomy planning, and correction calculation. Neurosurg Clin N Am. 2013 Apr; 24(2):163-72.
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