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Atul K. Patel, MD
Neurosurgery

Atul K. Patel

Special Interests:
Minimally Invasive Spinal Cord Surgeries
Diseases of the Spine
Herniated Discs
Spine Degeneration
(707)646-4370 Accepted Health Plans Locations:
NorthBay Center for Neurosciences
1860 Pennsylvania Ave.
Suite 230
Fairfield, CA

Professional Profile

As a spine surgeon I concentrate on surgical diseases of the spinal cord, and surrounding structures like discs, bone and connective tissues. I specialize in minimally invasive procedures which means patients experience less pain, fewer complications and a faster recovery. Most of my surgeries are outpatient and patients go home the same day. My patients typically have neck or back pain or pain in their arms and legs caused by things like herniated discs or degeneration of the spine.

I view my role as being in a partnership with the patient. I take the time to listen and hear what they have to say to and delve into their issue, rather than just diving into a surgery based on objective tests. I believe you have to listen and hear what they are saying and feeling and apply that, as well.

It's important that a doctor not just have surgical skills but also empathy. I credit my upbringing for that. I was raised by a mom with tremendous empathy and an amazing ability to listen. I learned that from her and she instilled in me a desire to help others. I get the most joy in my work when I am able to help my patient do well and be happy. It is true that when others feel joy, we get joy as well.

I chose neurosurgery as my path in medicine because I think the connection between the brain and body is fascinating. Other organs in the body can go bad and some even can be replaced through transplants but the brain is at the core of you. It affects every part of you.

I grew up on the East Coast but went to school at the University of California, San Francisco. After I graduated, I wanted to be in a program where I could see a wide array of neurosurgical issues and found that in Pittsburgh. But I loved the Bay Area and so I moved back and worked for a number of years in Oakland as the chief of neurosurgery at Highland Hospital before coming to NorthBay.

Initially, I came to NorthBay as part of the on-call panel as NorthBay worked to achieve its Level II trauma designation. I fell in love with the culture and infrastructure of NorthBay and am happy to be a part of the NorthBay Center for Neuroscience. I enjoy working at NorthBay very much. NorthBay provides support for the whole patient and that is tremendously important to really excellent patient care.

When I'm not working, I like to work out. In addition to helping my physical health, I find it puts my mind in great balance as well. And I have lots of friends and family who I enjoy spending time with, enjoying good food and travel and wine tasting in this beautiful region of California.

Education:

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, Residency, neurological surgery

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, Internship, general surgery

University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, San Francisco, M.D.

University of Virginia College of Arts and Science, Charlottesville, VA, BA Humanities, with Distinction.

Professional Memberships:

American Association of Neurological Surgeons

Congress of Neurological Surgeons

Council of State Neurosurgical Societies

American Medical Association

Pennsylvania Medical Association

Allegheny County Medical Society

Society of Neuro-Oncology

Languages Spoken:

English

Hospital Affiliations:

NorthBay Hospital VacaValley Hospital