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Dr. John Engstrom, a specialist in neuromuscular disorders, is director of neurology outpatient services and a neurologist at the UCSF Spine Center. In addition to treating patients, he studies new therapies for neurological complications of spine disease and peripheral nerve entrapment (a category of conditions involving compressed nerves).

Engstrom earned a bachelor's degree in genetics at the University of California, Davis, followed by a medical degree at the Stanford University School of Medicine. He completed a medical residency in neurology at UCSF, where he served as chief resident, before joining the UCSF in 1988.

Engstrom has received numerous awards, including the Betty Anker Fife Distinguished Chair in Neurology from UCSF, Visiting Professor of Neurologic Education at the Mayo Clinic and Outstanding Clinical Teacher for Neurology Residents from UCSF. He was also awarded the Distinguished Neurology Teacher of the Year Award by the American Neurological Association, and in 2021 he was honored with the B. Baker Lifetime Achievement in Neurologic Education, given by the American Academy of Neurology. He is director of the Neurology Residency Program at UCSF and an associate editor for Harrison's, an online resource for medical practice and research. He is vice chair of the Department of Neurology at UCSF.

  • Education

    Stanford University School of Medicine, 1981

  • Residencies

    John Hopkins Hospital, Internal Medicine, 1984

    UCSF Medical Center, Neurology, 1984

  • Fellowships

    John Hopkins Hospital, Neuromuscular Disorders, 1989

  • Board Certifications

    Neurology, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

    Internal Medicine, American Board of Internal Medicine

  • Academic Title


Treatments I specialize in

Everything from medications and physical therapy to access to expert spine neuro radiology and access to spine surgery

Where I see patients (4)

    My reviews


    Overall Experience
    179 Ratings
    About our process
    Mar 08, 2022
    Dr Engstrom always has a plan for my course of treatment.
    Feb 28, 2022
    I did feel like the concern/interest was more for my leg issues (post op) than the real issue of my 9 hour episodes I am seeing them for. Which is Trying to find and fix why I'm having these episodes. So I will have to make sure we stay on track legs are post op issues I've had since injury.
    Dec 22, 2021
    The provider's summary of the visit was both inaccurate and incomplete. It inaccurately described the primary symptom; said we had discussed things we did not discuss; and omitted a major item that we did discuss.
    Nov 28, 2021
    Dr Engstrom and his staff are always very helpful and kind. Dr Engstrom listened and got me the care I needed quickly.
    Nov 19, 2021
    Nov 16, 2021
    Dr. Engstrom is extremely caring. That comes through in all he does and says. His high level of compassion is commendable. He is a marvelous physician and healer. Honestly I am honored to be his patient.
    Oct 05, 2021
    Dr Engstrom is always easy to talk with and always very positive.
    Sep 23, 2021
    Dr. Engstrom and staff were wonderful. Everyone was knowledgeable caring and thorough.
    Sep 18, 2021
    There is noting that can be done about my condition
    Sep 14, 2021
    I have utmost respect and confidence in dr. Engstrom.
    Aug 20, 2021
    Dr Engstrom very personable. One of the very best I have encountered.
    Jun 08, 2021
    Mar 28, 2021
    Dr John Engstrom was very good I have many spine issues so it takes a lot longer
    Mar 02, 2021
    Dr. Engstrom is one of the most excellent physicians I have ever had the pleasure of working with. He takes great care to listen to me and his communication couldn't be better. He shows the utmost respect at all times. I have nothing but profound gratitude and the warmest regards for Dr. Engstrom.
    Feb 17, 2021
    Dr. Engstrom was kind compassionate knowledgeable and excellent
    Jan 12, 2021
    top class. Dr. Engstrom asks pertinent questions and is a good listener
    Dec 11, 2020
    I have absolute confidence in this provider! He was the one who resolved the conflicts in several earlier diagnoses (by other providers) confirmed diagnosis with extra tests and suggested a treatment plan that is safe and works for me.
    Nov 18, 2020
    Absolutely outstanding
    Sep 19, 2020
    I appreciated Dr Engstrom's attentiveness and patience in taking my history.
    Sep 15, 2020
    Dr. Engstrom is without equal. I completely trust and respect his level of experience and skill. As a highly trained medical professional he is a phenomenal listener and can express everything we needed to cover in a clear personal and compassionate manner. My recovery is tremendously supported by his efforts and I am fortuante to have been directed to him for my compromised nerve disability. After living with my recovery for over a year and hearing it may take another 2 years I know that as long as Dr. Engstrom is treating me for this I couldn't ask for a better treatment standard. Anyone who finds themslelves with a disability has a profouind need for the support patience and encouragement from someone like Dr. Engstrom.
    Jul 23, 2020
    Dr. Engstrom was GREAT. Very attentive detail oriented. Just plain a top notch physician.
    Jul 17, 2020
    Neurologist coordinated film viewing and next video visit during the appointment.
    Jul 10, 2020
    Jul 07, 2020
    Dr Engstrom is an excellent physician and very thorough in his examination and explanations.
    Jun 24, 2020
    We lost connection just before the end of our conference And Dr Engstrom called my home phone to finish our conversation. He also made a point to tell me it was a problem on the UCSF end that caused the loss of connection.
    Jun 04, 2020