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Brian Feeley


Orthopedic surgeon
Chief, Division of Sports Medicine and Shoulder Surgery
Director, Muscle Stem Cell Lab
Avid Ocean Beach surfer

Dr. Brian Feeley is an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in using arthroscopic (minimally invasive) procedures to care for patients with athletic injuries of the shoulder or knee. In the shoulder, he treats rotator cuff tears or impingement, labral tears and other causes of instability, clavicle fractures and shoulder arthritis, and he performs shoulder replacement surgery. In the knee, he treats anterior cruciate and other ligament injuries, meniscus tears, cartilage injuries and early arthritis. He is section chief of the UCSF Division of Sports Medicine and Shoulder Surgery and director of the Muscle Stem Cell Lab.

Feeley's research focuses on common knee and shoulder problems, including causes of muscle atrophy after rotator cuff tears. He also investigates how stem cells within muscle change the muscle tissue and how to stimulate these cells to improve function after injury. For the knee, he studies how to use low-cost motion analysis to decrease injury or re-injury after initial damage and surgical procedures.

After earning a bachelor's degree in biology and his medical degree at Stanford University, Feeley completed a residency in orthopedic surgery at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. He then completed a fellowship in sports medicine and shoulder surgery at the Hospital for Special Surgery, where he served as an assistant team physician to the New York Giants football team. He has been at UCSF since 2008.

Feeley has published more than 230 peer-reviewed articles, review studies and book chapters, as well as a book on rotator cuff injuries. He is associate director of UCSF's residency program in orthopedic surgery.

Feeley has served on the scientific advisory board for the National Football League and serves on several national orthopedic research and leadership committees. He has received young investigator awards from the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation, and Western Orthopaedic Association. He has also received a teaching award from the UCSF School of Medicine as well as research awards from the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine and American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons.

Feeley serves as team physician for St. Ignatius College Preparatory high school. An avid surfer, he especially enjoys the waves at San Francisco's Ocean Beach, in San Diego and on Kauai. In his spare time, he watches his five children's sports teams and co-hosts the UCSF podcast "Six to Eight Weeks: Perspectives on Sports Medicine."

  • Education

    Stanford School of Medicine, 2001

  • Fellowships

    Hospital for Special Surgery, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Surgery, 2008

  • Board Certifications

    Orthopaedic Surgery, American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery.

    Orthopaedic Sports Medicine, American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery.

  • Academic Title


My goal is to provide the best care and find the optimal strategy for each patient through evidence-based medicine and a personalized approach.

Where I see patients (1)

    My reviews


    Overall Experience
    404 Ratings
    About our process
    Jan 01, 2024
    Was very impressed with the UCSF Dr.
    Dec 21, 2023
    Explains well, address questions and offer solutions. I've been a patient of Dr Brain Feeley for the past 2 years.
    Dec 19, 2023
    I felt that the doctor and his assistant adequately covered everything and my options.
    Nov 28, 2023
    The Dr was very patient with all my questions and took time to answer thoughtfully.
    Nov 11, 2023
    Great experience in general.
    Nov 09, 2023
    I literally gave Dr. Feeley's name to my dentist yesterday and my husband's boss a few weeks ago. He is excellent.
    Nov 02, 2023
    I felt there was a disconnect between my experience of pain and the doctor's thoughts on the severity of the injury.
    Nov 01, 2023
    Dr. Feeley is a leader in his field and I feel lucky to have had him as my surgeon. My experience on the day of surgery with him and his team was as good as I could have hoped for.Post op instructions were confusing, because I had four conflicting sources of truth:- The pre-op phone calls with the medical team- Oral discussions with the team right before surgery- My printed after care instructions- The instructions on the pill bottle labelsFor example I was told on a call with a PA that the dressing could come off and be replaced with bandaids on day 3, but by the doctor that it should stay on until the first follow-up visit. The timing for taking Norco isn't the same on the pill bottle as on the post op instructions, and the timing for Ibuprofen sent to me by a PA over MyChart (three times a day with food) doesn't match the printed after-care instructions (start with every 4 hours, including at night, alternating with Norco).
    Oct 26, 2023
    Excellent doctor!
    Oct 26, 2023
    Dr. Feeley is always a pleasure to have appointments with! He always informs me of everything I need to know, and has a fantastic sense of humor.
    Oct 03, 2023
    Dr Feeley was especially kind and knowledgeable. As well as answering my concerns , addressing possible issues and also asking if myself or my daughter had any additional questions.
    Sep 30, 2023
    Dr. Feeley is very good at what he does. His bed side manner and his staff is the best I have ever had. I can't thank them all enough.
    Sep 30, 2023
    At the least I expected an exam of the affected area - perhaps not indicated but from patient perspective it's not advisable
    Sep 22, 2023
    Excellent care
    Sep 22, 2023
    Lots of info surfaced at this visit that was not disclosed before. For example that the second attempt of a rotator cuff surgery with a big tear only has a 30% rate of success. There was also no effective answer to the issue of actually prioritizing post-op PT for a patient like me, who needs the shoulder for professional work (conducting). So, the surgery is the only focus, for rehab, the patient is entirely on his own finding PT, and there's no effective supervision by a physician of the effectiveness of the PT. But the recovery depends largely on PT. This is a broken system.
    Sep 12, 2023
    I have recommended Dr. Feely to others before.
    Sep 09, 2023
    Dr. Is outstanding!
    Sep 01, 2023
    Dr Feeley was exceptionally knowledgeable and kind. My fractured arm was shown to me on the X-rays and explained well. The resident and medical student were also very kind, respectful of the injury and helpful.
    Aug 22, 2023
    I don't think medicine gets much better than what I experience at UCSF. Everyone is so thoughtful and nice and helpful, both clinical and non-clinical.
    Aug 22, 2023
    The outcome of the session with my provider was good in that he is clearly an expert in his field and his recommendation made sense and I approved of it. But the experience wasn't good, in that it was a 5 minute meeting, in which he informed me of his assessment, answered a couple of urgent questions and then whirled us out of the room without guidance on what I should expect from UCSF next, if anything.
    Aug 15, 2023
    The entire staff at UCSF sports medicine is outstanding, professional, and excellent at communication. Dr. Feeley looked at my MRI's, X-rays and did a thorough examination of my shoulders--that have severe rotator cuff tears. He took his time to answer all of my questions and then carefully explained my options, including the pros and difficulties of each option which gives me a clear understanding of what is going on and a good direction to take.
    Aug 09, 2023
    The care d as nd customer service are incredible. Every appointment is a positive experience. The staff members are kind, professional and objective. It is a breath of fresh air to have this kind of support when we are dealing with gess add kath issues.
    Jul 25, 2023
    I have the utmost respects for Dr Feeley! I trust him with my shoulder orthopedic needs and will definitely recommend him to those needing shoulder surgery
    Jul 18, 2023
    Dr. Feeley was very patient with my questions. I'm sure that he is busy and feeling rushed but he did not convey any impatience to me. I appreciate that he spent so much time with me.
    May 25, 2023
    Already recommended to several family members and my own cases
    May 23, 2023
    Excellent support and very informative and explanation of issues
    May 23, 2023
    Very consistent with my own research of the condition.
    May 23, 2023
    I was in pain & the group provided me with an apt. In a few hours. Dr. Feeley gave me a shot to relieve the pain & straighten my leg. I am so appreciative.
    May 12, 2023
    Love my dr and the nurses for the treatment I received
    May 06, 2023
    In the beginning of the conversation, dr feely told me if I were in Europe with managed care they would prescribe me some meds and send me away. (I've always had PPO insurance until recently and currently have medi-cal). He said I had frozen shoulder which is something not operated on, and would take 5 years to recover after surgery. He said it doesn't matter what the diagnosis is, there are four ways to manage: 1) do nothing, 2) take pain meds, 3) get injections and 4) surgery. He recommended injections. I asked where, what kind and the dosage of the injection. He said, "I am a surgeon, I don't do injections." When I asked on average, the dosage of the injection, he did give me specifics. When I told him urgent care placed an MRI, he scuffed at the idea and said he'd read it but he didn't see a need for one and wouldn't have placed one. Dr. Feely did sit through all my questions but my sense is that he is much more interested in surgery than patient care. Perhaps the demands of being a surgeon doesn't allow for time or capacity for patient visits where surgery is not evident. Of note: I got my MRI results which showed multiple tears including one in the superior labrum extending down to the biceps. It also showed edema and inflammation amongst other concerns
    Apr 21, 2023
    I feel lucky to have access to such an experienced and warm specialist.
    Apr 04, 2023
    Dr Feeley and his team were lovely. They took the time to explain my situation, share options (pros and cons) and allowed me to make an informed decision on my treatment
    Mar 30, 2023
    My whole experience with UCSF has been excellent. I'm lucky to have had access to a surgeon with Dr. Feeley's expertise.
    Mar 23, 2023
    Dr Feely was extremely well prepared and provided a ton of information
    Mar 21, 2023
    Follow up steps are confusing, probably my fault. How to get records from other hospital, what are next steps, when Is next visit etc.; not sure when I will be contacted, I'll just wait
    Mar 21, 2023
    My care providers have been excellent- caring and trusting. I am nervous about upcoming surgery and they always provide caring perspective and explain all options to me. Scheduling is the problem- I have been waiting for months.
    Mar 02, 2023
    I think I get both good overall thinking and attention to details from my provider. He has helped me through a diagnostic dilemma. I feel I have a plan that matches my needs, and I am appreciative.
    Feb 28, 2023
    Dr. Feeley and his staff are professional, friendly, and caring. I felt confident having them tend to my child's injury.
    Feb 18, 2023
    I'm grateful yo have access to this high quality surgeon
    Feb 18, 2023
    Dr Feeley is the best!
    Feb 03, 2023
    Had to message clinic after re referral letter for PT as when called they said it was required and not in my file.
    Feb 02, 2023
    Dr. Feeley shows great empathy and concern and relays his knowledge so it's easy to understand. He provides real world examples. I always have a list of questions for any doctor, so I don't forget, and Dr. Feeley answered them all. I feel confident in the care I am getting and that ultimately makes me feel positive about my own outcome.
    Jan 19, 2023
    Dr. Feeley is amazing! Best bedside manner of any orthopedic surgeon I've seen! I've had 5 previous Ortho surgeons and he's by far the best. I appreciate he takes the time to remember (actually reads the chart) little life details I tell him in previous appointments.
    Jan 12, 2023
    Care provider gave honest answers and went out of his way to help me.
    Jan 11, 2023
    The fellow listened well and made me a part of the team in my help. Dr. Feely breezed in, recited conclusions, and rushed out.
    Jan 10, 2023
    Dr Feeley was excellent. He explained the results from the MRI, laid out possible options, explained his recommendation (no surgery) and answered all my questions. He also allowed me to tie in my daughter to ask additional questions.
    Dec 15, 2022
    Dec 14, 2022
    Very good
    Dec 01, 2022
    Whole team was great and worked well together
    Nov 17, 2022
    All good!
    Nov 15, 2022
    I feel that I'm getting the best care and medical advice from Dr. Feeley and the care team.
    Nov 10, 2022
    Dr. Feeley understood my question and had recommendations and education about the pain I was experiencing. I have a lot of confidence in him and would highly recommend him.
    Nov 03, 2022
    Mostly felt it was all generic rote things. However what was detailed in the after visit summary/ notes was not all discussed. Cut and paste/ form. Progress notes-assessment plan paragraph 3 is incomplete in its information
    Nov 03, 2022
    Would recommend Dr. Feeley without hesitation
    Oct 30, 2022
    Dr Feeley has all the traits I like in a doctor. He is approachable, direct, listens carefully and treats patients with respect.
    Oct 21, 2022
    Dr was friendly and helpful. Made me comfortable regarding my care
    Oct 13, 2022
    Dr. Feeley was terrific. Clear, to the point, and of course very knowledgeable. I felt listened to.
    Oct 07, 2022
    Problem was attended and resolutions provided and explained clearly. Dr Brian Feeley was professional with ease and humor!
    Sep 15, 2022
    Outstanding doctor
    Aug 30, 2022
    Dr Feely was fantastic. Thorough and empathetic.
    Aug 27, 2022
    One of the best docs
    Aug 02, 2022
    Horrible experience ~ I wrote him a a letter in my response on how poorly the visit was conducted.
    Jul 28, 2022
    I felt I am in a very good hands with Dr. Feeley care, decisions I needed to make base on my injury. Dr Feeley is good listener and addressed our questions and concerns. Top notch quality and creativity. I am so fortunate to have him as my Surgeon.
    Jul 20, 2022
    Very very good.

    Selected research

    Meet Dr. Feeley

    Watch the video

    Lean how he treats athletic injuries of the shoulder and knee with arthroscopic (minimally invasive) procedures.