Adam S. Kanter, MD

Associate Professor of Neurological Surgery
Chief, Spine Service
Director, Minimally Invasive Spine Program
Director, Spine Fellowship Program

Adam Kanter




Adam S. Kanter, MD, joined the faculty of the Department of Neurosurgery as an assistant professor in January of 2008 and is director of the department’s minimally invasive spine program and spine fellowship program.

Dr. Kanter performed his undergraduate work at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, graduating with Cum Laude honors. He obtained his masters degree from Boston University and his medical degree from the University of Vermont in 2001. Dr. Kanter then completed his neurosurgical residency at the University of Virginia in 2007. He completed further subspecialty fellowship training in minimally invasive spine surgery at the University of California in San Francisco and Auckland City Hospital in Auckland, New Zealand.

Dr. Kanter’s clinical interests involve pushing the envelope in minimally invasive surgical portals to access the spine, several of which he has helped to develop.

Dr. Kanter is principal investigator in several research studies evaluating the use of stem cell derived biologics to induce spinal fusion. His research focuses on patient derived clinical evaluation outcomes, specifically appraising the utility of minimally invasive versus open surgical access.

Dr. Kanter has published numerous papers in refereed journals and authored several book chapters. His publications can be reviewed through the National Library of Medicine's publication database. He provides editorial service to several peer reviewed journals and is a member of the societies of minimally invasive spine surgery and lateral access surgery.

Hospital Privileges:

Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC
UMPC Passavant
UPMC Presbyterian
UPMC St. Margaret
UPMC Shadyside

Professional Organization Membership:

American Association of Neurological Surgeons 
Congress of Neurological Surgeons
Society of Lateral Access Surgeons
Society of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgeons
North American Spine Society
AANS/CNS Joint Section on Spine & Peripheral Nerves
American Medical Association
American College of Surgeons

Media Appearances

Less invasive spinal surgery pioneered by UPMC neurosurgeon helps patients recover quicker
July 23, 2012
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Medical Miracles: Surgery Restores Crushed Spine
May 2012
Pittsburgh Magazine

Pounded spinal cord can mimic more serious injury
October 4, 2010
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Research Activities

Dr. Kanter was integral in the creation of the spinal surgery outcomes database that analytically tracks patients throughout their spinal surgery treatment course, from pre-op to recovery. Proven clinical outcomes measures are now recorded using the latest high definition interfaces at each office visit with the aim to ensure every patient’s return to functionality is as efficient and effective as possible. The database enables instant pooling of patient populations, thus streamlining the data acquisition process and facilitating the objective formulation of evidence based patient-centered conclusions. In its first two years of collection, the database has revealed an overall patient satisfaction rate following surgery for degenerative conditions of the spine at greater than 90%, further facilitating the expeditious evaluation of surgical procedures and their outcomes, and leading the way for an array of future clinical research studies.