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Deanna Rae Saylor, M.D., M.H.S.

Photo of Dr. Deanna Rae Saylor, M.D., M.H.S.
  • Associate Director, Neurological Consultation Service
  • Assistant Professor of Neurology


HIV/AIDS Associated Neuropathies, Neuroimmunology, Neurology

Research Interests

Neurological complications of HIV Infection; neuroepidemiology; developing and validating simple tools to improve care of neurological disorders in resource-limited settings more


The Johns Hopkins Hospital

600 N. Wolfe Street
Meyer Building, Neurology, # 6113
Baltimore, MD 21287 map


Dr. Saylor is a neuro-infectious diseases and neuroimmunology specialist with special interest in the neurological complications of HIV infection.  Her clinical interests also include other infectious and inflammatory diseases of the brain and spinal cord, including multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis, and encephalitis.  

Dr. Saylor also specializes in global health and neurology, and her research interests includes better understanding the neurologic disease burden in resource limited settings, improving neurological education of both neurologists and non-neurologists in resource-limited settings, and improving the care of patients with neurological disorders across the globe.  She has ongoing research collaborations in Uganda and Zambia and has previously lived and worked in Kenya. more


  • Associate Director, Neurological Consultation Service
  • Assistant Professor of Neurology

Departments / Divisions



  • MD, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (2011)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Neurology (2015)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Neuroimmunology (2016)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology / Neurology-General (2016)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

My research interests include defining the epidemiology and clinical characteristics of neurological disorders in resource-limited settings, understanding the clinical characteristics and pathogenesis of neurological complications of HIV, and developing validated screening tools and biomarkers for neurological diseases both in the United States and in resource-limited settings.  I have ongoing clinical and epidemiological research investigating neurological complications of HIV in both the United States and Uganda.

Selected Publications

infected individuals. Curr Infect Dis Rep. In Press.

Saylor D, Dickens A, Sacktor N, Haughey N, Slusher B, Pletnikov M, Mankowski JL, Brown A, Volsky DJ, McArthur JC. HIV-associated neurocognitive Disorder – pathogenesis and prospects for treatment. Nat Rev Neurol 2016;12:234-248.

Saylor D, Sacktor N. Cognitive impairment among older individuals with HIV infection. Curr Geri Rep. 2016;5:63-70.

Saylor D, Thakur K, Venkatesan A. Acute Encephalitis in the Immunocompromised Individual. Curr Opin Infectious Dis 2015;28:330-336.

Cettomai D, Kwasa JK, Birbeck GL, Price RW, Cohen CR, Bukusi EA, Kendi C, Meyer AC. Screening for HIV-Associated Peripheral Neuropathy in Resource-Limited Settings. Muscle & Nerve 2013;48:516-524.

Cettomai D, Kwasa J, Birbeck GL, Price RW, Bukusi EA, Meyer AC. Training Needs and Evaluation of a Neuro-HIV Training Module for Non-Physician Healthcare Workers in Western Kenya. J Neurological Sci. 2011;307:92-96.

Cettomai D, Kwasa J, Kendi C, Birbeck GL, Price RW, Bukusi EA, Cohen CR, Meyer AC. Utility of Quantitative Sensory Testing and Screening Tools in Identifying HIV-Associated Peripheral Neuropathy in Western Kenya: Pilot Testing. PLoS ONE. 2010:5(12):e14256. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0014256

Cettomai D, Hiremath G, Ratchford J, Venkatesan A, Greenberg BM, McGready J, Pardo CA, Kerr DA, Frohman E, Balcer LJ, McArthur JC, Calabresi PA. Associations between retinal nerve fiber layer abnormalities and optic nerve examination. Neurology. 2010;75:1318-1325.

Cettomai D, McArthur JC. Mirtazapine use in HIV-infected patients with progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy. Arch Neurol. 2009;66:255-258.

Academic Affiliations & Courses

Courses and Syllabi

  • The Basics of Lumbar Punctures
    Lecture in the Neurology Medical Student Clerkship
    2013 - 2015
  • “Chief Chats”
    Small group lectures/discussion groups in the Neurology Medical Student Clerkship
    2014 - 2015
  • “Transition to the Wards”
    Small group learning for 2nd year medical students
    2015 - 2015
  • “Neurological Emergencies”
    Small group session for the 4th Year Medical Student Stairs and Elevators Course
    2015 - 2016
  • “Functional Neuroanatomy of Language”
    2015 - 2015
  • “Neurological Complications of HIV”
    Semi-monthly lectures to medicine residents on the Polk HIV inpatient service
  • “Case Based Localization”
    Small monthly group didactic session as part of the Clinical Reasoning in Neurology course within the medical student neurology clerkship
  • “Approach to Transverse Myelitis”
    2016 - 2016
  • “Chronic Neurological Sequelae of Neuroinvasive Infectious Diseases” (223.667.11)
    Lecture, Chronic Disease in Low and Middle Income Countries
    2016 - 2016
  • “Nervous System Disorders Across the Life Course in Resource-Limited Settings” (223.667.11)
    Lecture, Chronic Disease in Low and Middle Income countries
    2016 - 2016
  • “Neurological Complications of HIV”
    2016 - 2016

Activities & Honors


  • Phi Beta Kappa, The Ohio State University, 2004, 2004
  • Suma cum laude with distinction and with honors in the liberal arts, The Ohio State University, 2005
  • Alpha Omega Alpha, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2011
  • Neurology Resident Brain Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2014
  • Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections Young Investigator Award, 2015
  • American Academy of Neurology Resident Leadership Award, 2015
  • Johns Hopkins Osler Attending in Neurology, 2016


  • American Academy of Neurology

    Member of the Global Health Section, Neuroepidemiology Section, and Neuro-Infectious Diseases Section: As a Global Health Section member, I serve on the newsletter committee, on a committee to develop a standardized curriculum for training U.S.-based neurologists with an interest in global health, and on a committee to develop a curriculum for training neurologists in resource-limited settings.

Professional Activities

  • Member, Johns Hopkins Neuroscience Community Innovation Council
  • Resident Mentor, Johns Hopkins Neurology Junior Faculty Resident Mentoring program
  • Physician Champion, Johns Hopkins Zayed 12E Comprehensive Unit-Based Safety Program Committee
  • Neurology Representative, Johns Hopkins Radiology Appropriate Imaging Initiative

Videos & Media

Lectures and Presentations

  • “NeuroAIDS in Uganda”
    Lecture, Johns Hopkins NeuroAIDS Seminar Series (03/18/2016)
  • “HIV-Associated Neurocognitive Disorders in Uganda”
    Research Presentation, National Institutes of Health Fogarty Brain Disorders Meeting, Bethesda, MD (04/06/2016)
  • “Zika Virus and Guillain-Barre Syndrome”
    Lecture (Webinar), United Nations Medical Services Division Continuing Medical Education Series, International Webinar (06/14/2016)

Recent News Articles and Media Coverage

Invited blog post to the Without Borders section of the American Academy of Neurology:

Patient Ratings & Comments

The Patient Rating score is an average of all responses to physician related questions on the national CG-CAHPS Medical Practice patient experience survey through Press Ganey. Responses are measured on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the best score. Comments are also gathered from our CG-CAHPS Medical Practice Survey through Press Ganey and displayed in their entirety. Patients are de-identified for confidentiality and patient privacy.

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