Lee Tan, MD


Dr. Lee Tan is a neurosurgeon specializing in both minimally invasive and traditional open surgical techniques for patients with various spinal disorders. The conditions he treats include scoliosis, kyphosis, flat-back syndrome, chin-on-chest deformity, cervical disc herniation, cervical stenosis, ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL), lumbar disc herniation, spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis and other spinal pathologies. Trained in neurological and orthopedic spine surgery, Tan can assess patients from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Tan's research interests include spinal biomechanics, motion preservation techniques and improving surgical outcomes for patients with spinal deformities.

Tan received his medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine. He then completed a residency in neurological surgery at Rush University Medical Center, followed by a fellowship in complex spine surgery at Columbia University Medical Center.

Tan is a member of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Congress of Neurological Surgeons, and North American Spine Society.


Neurosurgery Clinic
400 Parnassus Ave., Eighth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94143
Phone: (415) 353-7500
Fax: (415) 353-2889

Hours: Monday to Friday
8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Spine Center
400 Parnassus Ave., Third Floor
San Francisco, CA 94143-0332
Phone: (866) 81-SPINE or
(866) 817-7463
Neurospine : (415) 353-2739
Neuro-spine Fax: (415) 353-2176
Ortho-spine Fax: (415) 353-4047

Hours: Monday to Friday
8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Academic Title

Assistant Professor

More about Lee Tan

Additional Languages



Indiana University School of Medicine 2010


Rush University Medical Center GME, Neurosurgery 2016


Columbia University Medical Center, Adult and Pediatric Comprehensive Spine 2017

Selected Research and Publications

  1. Spinal Deformity. Iatrogenic Cervicothoracic Kyphosis Surgery Complication. 2018; 75-89.
  2. Spinal Deformity. Thoracolumbar Scoliosis (AIS) Posterior Surgery Complication. 2018; 137-143 .
  3. Tan LA, Riew KD, Traynelis VC. Cervical Spine Deformity-Part 3: Posterior Techniques, Clinical Outcome, and Complications. Neurosurgery. 2017 Dec 01; 81(6):893-898.
  4. Safety of a High-Dose Tranexamic Acid Protocol in Complex Adult Spinal Deformity: Analysis of 100 Consecutive Cases. Spine Deformity. 2017.
  5. Tan LA, Riew KD, Traynelis VC. Cervical Spine Deformity-Part 2: Management Algorithm and Anterior Techniques. Neurosurgery. 2017 Oct 01; 81(4):561-567.
  6. Munich SA, Tan LA, Nogueira DM, Keigher KM, Chen M, Crowley RW, Conners JJ, Lopes DK. Mobile Real-time Tracking of Acute Stroke Patients and Instant, Secure Inter-team Communication - the Join App. Neurointervention. 2017 Sep; 12(2):69-76.
  7. Tan LA, Angevine PD. Letter to the Editor. Utility of intravenous tranexamic acid in single-level posterior lumbar interbody fusions. J Neurosurg Spine. 2017 Aug 25; 1-2.
  8. Tan LA, Riew KD, Traynelis VC. Cervical Spine Deformity-Part 1: Biomechanics, Radiographic Parameters, and Classification. Neurosurgery. 2017 Aug 01; 81(2):197-203.
  9. Malcolm JG, Tan LA, Johnson AK. Image-Guided Internal Fixation of an Oblique Sagittal Split Fracture of C1 Lateral Mass with Motion Preservation: A Technical Report. Cureus. 2017 Jul 20; 9(7):e1496.
  10. Tan LA, Kasliwal MK, Gerard CS, Traynelis VC, Fontes RBV. Surgical considerations in posterior C1-2 instrumentation in the presence of vertebral artery anomalies: case illustration and review of literature. Br J Neurosurg. 2017 Jun 29; 1-3.
  11. Tan LA, Riew KD. Anterior cervical osteotomy: operative technique. Eur Spine J. 2017 Jun 07.
  12. Kerolus MG, Tan LA, Lopes DK. Giant vein of Galen malformation in an adult. Radiol Case Rep. 2017 Sep; 12(3):585-589.
  13. Nazari P, Tan LA, Wewel JT, Moftakhar R, Kasliwal MK. Massive epistaxis resulting from radiation-induced internal carotid artery pseudoaneurysm. Neurol India. 2017 Mar-Apr; 65(2):380-382.
  14. Kerolus M, Tan LA, Chen M. Treatment of a giant vertebral artery pseudoaneurysm secondary to gunshot wound to the neck using pipeline embolization device. Br J Neurosurg. 2016 Dec 07; 1-2.
  15. Kerolus M, Turel MK, Tan L, Deutsch H. Stand-alone anterior lumbar interbody fusion: indications, techniques, surgical outcomes and complications. Expert Rev Med Devices. 2016 Dec; 13(12):1127-1136.
  16. Byrne N, Plonsker JH, Tan LA, Byrne RW, Munoz LF. Orbital Cellulitis with Pansinusitis and Subdural Empyema. J Emerg Med. 2017 Feb; 52(2):e41-e43.
  17. Nazari P, Tan LA, Kasliwal MK, Traynelis VC. Aortic Dissection: An Unusual Extraspinal Cause of Acute Paraplegia in the Emergency Department. J Emerg Med. 2017 Jan; 52(1):e19-e21.
  18. Tan LA, Kasliwal MK, Moftakhar R. . Non-Traumatic Subdural Hematoma and Intracystic Hemorrhage Associated with a Middle Fossa Arachnoid Cyst - Report of a Case. Asian Journal of Neurosurgery . 2016.
  19. Fukuda K, Majumdar M, Masoud H, Nguyen T, Honarmand A, Shaibani A, Ansari S, Tan LA, Chen M. Multicenter assessment of morbidity associated with cerebral arteriovenous malformation hemorrhages. J Neurointerv Surg. 2017 Jul; 9(7):664-668.
  20. Plonsker J, Tan LA, Munoz LF. Post-operative intracranial hemorrhage related to using t-PA for declotting an occluded hemodialysis catheter: A cautionary tale. J Clin Neurosci. 2016 Oct; 32:145-7.

Publications are derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and provided by UCSF Profiles, a service of the Clinical & Translational Science Institute (CTSI) at UCSF. Researchers can make corrections and additions to their publications by logging on to UCSF Profiles.