Ashwini D. Sharan, MD

Ashwini D. Sharan, MD

Contact Dr. Sharan

909 Walnut Street
2nd Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19107

(215) 955-7000
(215) 503-9170 fax

Medical School

UMDNJ - New Jersey Medical School - 1995

Residency

University of Connecticut School of Medicine

Fellowship

Cleveland Clinic

Board Certification

Neurological Surgery

Hospital Appointment

Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
Methodist Hospital Division of Thomas Jefferson University Hospital

Expertise and Research Interests

Dr. Ashwini Sharan is currently a Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery and the Department of Neurology at Jefferson Medical College and Thomas Jefferson University.

His practice focuses on:

  • Complex Spinal Reconstruction
  • Epilepsy Surgery
  • Deep Brain Stimulation surgery
  • Neuromodulation

His research interests include:

  • Functional Neuroimaging - fMRI, DTI, fcMRI
  • Neurosurgical Education

In 1995, he completed his BA-MD degree from Boston University and UMDNJ - Newark, New Jersey in an accelerated medical program. He initially began neurosurgical training at the University of Connecticut and completed the majority of his training at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Since then he has completed a fellowship in Spinal Neurosurgery and Functional Neurosurgery both at The Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Cleveland, Ohio. Here he had the opportunity of training in Functional Neurosurgery with Dr. Ali Rezai and in Spinal Neurosurgery with Dr. Edward Benzel.

At Thomas Jefferson University, Dr. Sharan provides unique expertise in deep brain stimulation for parkinson's disease, essential tremor, and dystonia. His expertise additionally includes intrathecal pump implantation for spasticity, cortical and spinal cord stimulation for chronic pain disorders, and vagal nerve stimulation for epilepsy and depression. His practice is heavily biased towards Functional neurosurgery, essentially a new field in which disorders in which the neural circuit is effected but now can be treated with electrical stimulator and pacemakers. Additionally, at Thomas Jefferson University, he leads the Surgical Epilepsy program in which they treat with surgery approximately 100 patients per year achieving cures in a majority of their patients. In 2004, he was featured in Glamour magazine for Epilepsy surgery. (How Far Would you go to Save your Health, August 2004) Otherwise, his clinical practice is balanced with complex spinal surgery procedures. He performs approximately 200 spinal operations for spinal trauma, spinal cord tumors, metastatic carcinoma, infections, and degenerative disorders.

Dr. Sharan has been awarded the William H. Sweet Young Investigator Award sponsored by Medtronic, Inc. (one of the largest manufacturers of Pace-makers and other specialized instruments). This award is given for the best presentation to an investigator within 5 years of completion of residency training at the AANS Annual Meeting. The title of the presentation was "MRI and Spinal Cord Stimulation: An Experimental Safety Study" (refer to http://www.neurosurgery.org/pain/awards-sweet.html) That particular research has even resulted in FDA labeling changes for Spinal Cord Stimulation devices allowing those patients to now obtain MR imaging of their brains under certain circumstances.

Dr. Sharan is a co-investigator for two National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded research projects. One project focuses on human brain cell infection and neuronal dysfunction in AIDS. The second project involves the study of genetic influences on human epilepsy. He has participated in or is actively running numerous clinical trials.

In addition to these responsibilities, he is currently the Associate program director of the Jefferson Neurosurgery residency. He has been awarded the William Buchheit Award for best teacher of the year multiple times. He has organized many innovative courses educating the future neurosurgeons on the Foundations of Neurosurgery.

He is the IT Chair for the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. He serves on the board of director of the North American Neuromodulation Society and American Association of South Asian Neurosurgeons. He has authored numerous publications and given countless invited talks. Dr. Sharan has been a faculty member for several review courses throughout the United States and internationally. His topics included mechanisms of deep brain stimulation, advanced stereotactic and functional neurosurgery, pain, and spinal neurosurgery - its aspects and treatment.

As well, Dr. Sharan is avidly working toward improving the delivery of neurosurgical care. He has multiple patents and has been an integral participant inithe development of a tool with the aid of Endius (now owned by Zimmer spine) which allows access of the cervical spine with smaller incisions and less muscle destruction. He sits on the scientific Advisory Board of Autonomic Technologies Incorporated and Sierra Neuropharmaceuticals. The latter company is working on developing novel approached for the treatment of epilepsy, depression, and schizophrenia via delivery of drug directly into the brain.

Keywords

neurostimulation; epilepsy; deep brain stimulation; functional neurosurgery; spinal instrumentation; degenerative spinal disease; spinal tumor; spasticity; complex spinal procedures