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Neurology and Neurosurgery

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Meet Our Current Residents in Neurosurgery

Postgraduate Year 7 (Class of 2017)
Postgraduate Year 6 (Class of 2018)
Postgraduate Year 5 (Class of 2019)
Postgraduate Year 4 (Class of 2020)
Postgraduate Year 3 (Class of 2021)
Postgraduate Year 2 (Class of 2022)
Postgraduate Year 1 (Class of 2023)

Postgraduate Year 7

Ben Elder, M.D.

Benjamin Elder, MD, PhD

Undergraduate Education: Yale (2003)
Ph.D.: Rice (2009)
Medical School: Baylor (2010)

Research areas:

  • Developing a rat model of spinal fusion to study the effects of various parameters on spinal fusion (bone graft material, CSF leak, antibiotics, stem cell grafts).
  • Studying a rabbit model of spinal fusion to identify the effects of low dose BMP and teriparatide on spinal fusion.
  • Tracking mesenchymal stem cells used in the bone graft in a mouse model of spinal fusion.

Grants and awards:

  • Walter Dandy Award for Clinical Excellence (2016) Johns Hopkins University, Department of Neurological Surgery
  • Elected into Alpha Omega Alpha, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2016
  • Inducted into the Distinguished Teaching Society of The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2016
  • Irving J. Sherman Award for Resident Achievement/Outstanding Junior Resident (2013), The Johns Hopkins University, Department of Neurological Surgery
  • Employee of the Month (2014), U.S. Food and Drug Administration Center for Devices and Radiologic Health, Division of Orthopedic Devices
  • Section on Disorders of the Spine and Peripheral Nerves Sanford Larson Award for Outstanding Resident Research (2014) Congress of Neurological Surgery/American Association for Neurological Surgery
Rory Goodwin, M.D.

Rory Goodwin, MD, PhD

Undergraduate Education: University of Florida (2002)
Ph.D.: Johns Hopkins University (2008)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2010)

Research areas:

  • Microarray profiling of complex biological systems
  • Treatments in spinal cord injury models and associated SCI complications
  • Influence of methylation, extracellular matrix proteins and receptor tyrosine kinase signaling in malignant glioma, chordoma, and metastatic tumors
  • Retrospective and prospective analyses of prognostic factors, clinical outcomes, costs, and quality-adjusted life years of patients diagnosed with metastatic disease to the spine
  • Systematic reviews of metastatic cancer to the spinal column and establishment of management guidelines

Grants and awards:

  • Harvey Cushing Award (2016) Johns Hopkins University, Department of Neurological Surgery
  • Edward H. Oldfield, MD Research Award (2014), NREF and Academy of Neurological Surgery
  • Postdoctoral Enrichment Program (2014), Burroughs Welcome Fund
  • Postdoctoral Science Fellowship (2014), UNCF-Merck
  • Harvard Medical School Global Clinical Research Scholars' Tuition Scholarship (2014), American College of Surgeons Resident Research Scholarship Alternate
Thomas Kosztowski, M.D.

Thomas Kosztowski, MD

Undergraduate Education: University of Illinois (2005)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins School of Medicine (2010)

Research areas: 

  • Assessing outcomes in the treatment of degenerative diseases of the cervical and lumbar spine
  • Increased rates of instrumentation failure using C2 pedicle screws vs the shorter C3 lateral mass screws as the top of a long fusion construct
  • Natural history of osteophyte reabsorption in the cervical spine after decompression
  • Role of  C1/2 joint BMP in fusion
  • New instrument designed to better separate scar tissue from bone in redo spine surgeries
  • SOCI Clinical Investigation program at the School of Public Health


Postgraduate Year 6


Chikezie Eseonu, M.D.

Chikezie Eseonu, MD

Undergraduate Education: Harvard (2007)
Medical School: Yale (2011)

Research areas:

  • Multi-targeting nanoparticle particle drug delivery of SiRNA to high grade human gliomas and Jordan Green's biomedical engineering lab
  • Outcome studies of gliomas, pituitary tumors and meningiomas
  • Developing a fibrin gel/biodegradable polymer nanoparticle drug delivery carrier
  • Retrospective analysis of the prognostic factors, extent of resection, clinical outcomes, and costs for awake craniotomies
  • Retrospective analysis of the clinical outcomes, extent of resection, learning curve, surgical technique, costs, and quality-adjusted life years of the microscopic and endoscopic endonasal transsphenoidal surgical approaches
  • Intraoperative brain mapping
  • Clinical outcome studies for gliomas, pituitary tumors, brain metastases, and meningiomas

Awards and grants:

  • Shining Star Award (2014) The Johns Hopkins Hospital, School of Medicine
  • Diversity supplemental grant in health-related research (2015), National Institutes of Health (NIH)
  • Neurosurgery Chairman's Award for Improving Patient Safety (2016), The Johns Hopkins University, Department of Neurological Surgery
Tomas Garzon-Muvdi, M.D.

Tomas Garzon-Muvdi, MD

Undergraduate Education: Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, Campus Saltillo (2005)
Medical School: Universidad Autonoma de San Luis Potosi (2011)

Research areas: 

  • How brain tumors elude the immune system by suppressing it., specifically the effect of checkpoint molecules and how we can inhibit them to help the immune cells recognize tumor cells and create a durable and effective immune response against the tumor
  • Mechanisms that brain tumor cells use to migrate and invade normal brain tissue, as well as ways to inhibit these mechanisms and decrease the invasion of normal brain by tumor cells
  • Mechanisms of vasospasm after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) with a mouse model of SAH to allow us to understand the mechanisms by which aneurysm patients sustain strokes after the initial hemorrhage
  • Outcomes of patients with cerebrovascular disease
  • Outcomes of brain tumor patients


Postgraduate Year 5


Matt Bender, M.D.

Matthew Bender, MD

Undergraduate Education: Yale (2006)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2012)

Research areas:

Dr. Bender is completing a two-year endovascular neurosurgery fellowship during his elective years. He leads a variety of related clinical research projects, including longitudinal studies of subarachnoid hemorrhage, novel applications of flow diverters, antiplatelet strategies to mitigate hemorrhagic and thromboembolic risk associated with the endovascular interventions, and new catheter technologies. He also has a longstanding interest in the surgical treatment of trigeminal neuralgia. 

Rajiv Iyer, M.D.

Rajiv Iyer, MD

Undergraduate Education: New York University (2007)
Medical School: New York University (2012)

Research areas:

  • Outcomes of endoscopic surgery for pediatric craniosynostosis
  • Evaluating treatment algorithms for skull base CSF leaks in patients with intracranial hypertension
  • Fusion outcomes for patients with craniovertebral instability


Postgraduate Year 4


Christopher Jackson, M.D.

Chris Jackson, MD

Undergraduate Education: Wake Forest (2008)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2013)

Bowen Jiang, M.D.

Bowen Jiang, MD

Undergraduate Education: Stanford (2008)
Medical School: Stanford (2012)

Grants and awards: 

  • 2017 - 2018: Council of State Neurological Society's (CSNS) Socioeconomic Fellow
  • 2015 - 2016: Vice Chair of Communications for the House Staff Patient Safety and Quality Council 
  • Most Outstanding Rotating Intern of the Year (2013), Department of General Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Hospital
Camilo Molina, M.D.

Camilo Molina, MD

Undergraduate Education: Miami University, Oxford, Ohio (2008)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2013)

Teresa Wojtasiewicz, M.D.

Teresa Wojtasiewicz

Undergraduate Education: Barnard College of Columbia University (2007)
Medical School: Columbia (2013)

Postgraduate Year 3

Christina Jackson, M.D.

Christina Jackson, MD

 Undergraduate Education: University of Texas at Austin (2009)
Medical School: Harvard (2014)

Erick Westbroek, M.D.

Erick Westbroek, MD

Undergraduate Education: University of Utah (2009)
Medical School: Stanford (2014)

Awards and grants: 

  • Outstanding Rotating Intern, Department of Surgery (2015), The Johns Hopkins Hospital, School of Medicine
  • Irving J. Sherman Award for Resident Achievement/Outstanding Junior Resident (2016), The Johns Hopkins University, Department of Neurological Surgery

Postgraduate Year 2
Yike Jin, M.D.

Yike Jin, MD

Undergraduate Education: Johns Hopkins University (2011)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2015)

Daniel Lubelski, M.D.

Daniel Lubelski, MD

Undergraduate Education: City University of New York, Queens College, Flushing, New York (2009)
Medical School: Cleveland Clinic (2015)

Dimetrios Mathios, M.D.

Dimetrios Mathios, MD

Undergraduate Education: University of Athens School of Health Sciences (2011)
Medical School: University of Athens (2015)

Risheng Xu, M.D.

Risheng Xu, MD, PhD

Undergraduate Education: Harvard (2007)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2015)


Postgraduate Year 1


Jennifer Kim, M.D.

Jennifer Kim, MD

Undergraduate Education: Johns Hopkins University (2010)
Medical School: Johns Hopkins (2016)

Ann Liu, M.D.

Ann Liu, MD

Undergraduate Education: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2011)
Medical School: Wake Forest (2016)

Jordina Rincon-Torroella, M.D.

Jordina Rincon-Torroella, MD

Undergraduate Education: INS Serrallarga (2006)
Medical School: University of Barcelona (2013)

Amanda Sacino, M.D., Ph.D.

Amanda Sacino, MD, PhD

Undergraduate Education: Brown University (2009)
Medical School:  University of Florida (2016)

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