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Meet Todd Shanks, MD

An Innovator of Spine and Brain Health 

Dr. Todd Shanks is a board-certified neurosurgeon specializing in general, complex spine, and cranial procedures. Areas of expertise include spinal and cranial oncology treatments for neoplastic lesions of the spine, brain and spinal cord.  Dr. Shanks is focused on providing functional and reparative neurosurgery for degenerative spine disorders and spine deformity in adults.  He has received additional training in  peripheral nerve surgery, functional neurosurgery, and craniofacial pain disorders.

Dr. Todd Shanks

Clinical Contributions

Dr. Shanks’ clinical research contributions are significant in the areas of novel spinal implants and surface technologies, microneurography as a tool for testing limb prosthetics, and stereotactic radiosurgery and neuromodulation for the treatment of craniofacial pain disorders. In addition to treatment for spinal disorders Dr. Shanks is focused on treatments for trigeminal neuralgia, atypical face pain, cervicogenic headache, occipital neuralgia and Chiari malformations.

During his time at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Dr. Shanks worked under Dr. Peter Konrad toward the development of robotic prosthetic limbs utilizing microneurography of the peripheral nerves.


Dr. Shanks also holds multiple spinal implant patents, and continually collaborates with industry leaders to further advance implants for use in spinal surgeries. He has participated in multiple craniofacial headache studies, and continues to move the field of neurological care forward.

Professional Education

Dr. Todd Shanks earned his medical degree from the University of Louisville and began his neurological surgery residency at Louisiana State University in New Orleans where he trained under David Kline.  Dr. Kline was a leader in the field of peripheral nerve surgery. When Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, his studies were interrupted and he completed his residency at the University of Louisville Department of Neurological Surgery/Leatherman Spine Program.  He continued his training and fellowship in stereotactic and functional neurosurgery, with an emphasis on deep brain stimulation, and craniofacial pain at Vanderbilt University Department of Neurological Surgery in Nashville, Tennessee.

Dr. Todd Shanks - Education


Vanderbilt University Medical Center - Neurological Surgery Department



University of Louisville Medical Center



Louisiana State University HSC-Neurological Surgery Program



Louisiana State University HSC-Surgery Program



University of Louisville School of Medicine

Medical Education

Dr. Shanks is a member of the following:

  • American Association of Neurological Surgeons

  • Congress of Neurological Surgeons

  • American Association of Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery

  • North American Neuromodulation Society

  • North American Spine Society

Image by Piron Guillaume
Associations and Memberships
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