“I spent twenty years learning how to diagnose and treat patients with spinal disease; but the most important education I obtained was when my father became ill
and I experienced what it is like to be on the other end of the relationship. I decided that caring for my patients requires not only that I am capable of performing state-of-the-art surgeries, but that I must care for my patients emotionally, and treat them as I would like my own family to be treated…with respect, concern, and empathy for their overall well being and the well being of their family and friends who love them.”
-Choll W. Kim, M.D., Ph.D.-
Dr. Choll Kim graduated cum laude from Harvard Medical School and completed his fellowship training in complex spine surgery at the Mayo Clinic. He is board certified by American Board of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
Dr. Kim is a nationally known expert in the modern field of computer-assisted minimally invasive spine surgery. He has trained specialists throughout the country on the safe and effective application of state-of-the-art techniques using image guidance and navigation technologies.
Dr. Kim utilizes a broad range of minimally invasive treatments to effectively treat all aspects of complex spinal disorders, including spinal stenosis, spinal deformities (such as scoliosis, spondylolisthesis, and kyphosis), traumatic injuries, tumors, and infections throughout the entire spine from the neck to the low back.
A leader in his field, Dr. Kim is the founder of the Society for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery (SMISS), director of the Minimally Invasive Spine Center at Alvarado Hospital and associate clinical professor at UCSD. He is a Qualified Medical Evaluator and a past voting member of the FDA Orthopedic Devices Panel which reviews all new spinal technologies. Additionally, Dr. Kim is an active member of the North American Spine Society and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and past-president of the San Diego Chapter of the Western Orthopaedic Association. He has nearly 200 publications and presentations.
Dr. Kim was born in Rangoon, Burma – Nov 13, 1964. He currently lives in Scripps Ranch with his wife, Jacquie, son Alex (born11/17/94) and daughter Jessica (born 8/8/97).…
San Diego Chapter of the Western Orthopaedic Association
Awards and Publications
America’s Top Doctor by Castle Connolly (11th Edition) - Jan 2012
World Congress of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery & Techniques: 2008
California Orthopaedic Association Lloyd W. Taylor Award - Feb 2000
Expert Consultant for ABC News - May 2007
James Esch Award for Best Clinical Research - Jun 1999
McGovern SC, Sethuraman V, Kim CW, Osman DR, Cohen-Gadol A, Larson DR, Huddleston PM, Thielen KR, Yaszemski MJ, Currier BL. Efficacy of Image-guided Biopsy for Suspected Spinal Infection. Spine Journal
Ward SR, Kim CW, Eng CM, Gottschalk LJ, Tomiya A, Garfin SR, Lieber RL. Architectural analysis and intraoperative measurements demonstrate the unique design of the multifidus muscle for lumbar spine stability. J Bone Join Surg Am 2009, Jan 91(1), 176-85.
Webb J, Gottschalk L, Lee YP, Garfin S, Kim CW. Surgeon Perceptions of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery. SAS Journal 2008, Volume 2, Issue 2, 145-149, 2008.
Choo AD, Regev G, Garfin SR, Kim CW. Surgeon’s Perceptions of Spinal Navigation: Analysis of Key Factors Affecting the Lack of Adoption of Spinal Navigation Technology. SAS Journal 2(4): 189-94, 2008
Harvard Medical School - Cum Laude
Founder - Society for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery (SMISS)
Patient Reviews for Choll W. Kim, MD, PhD
by Jon N.
Very progressive, personable, helpful.
by Mike B.
Excellent. Dr. Kim takes your situation personally, and does "everything" he can to improve your quality of life.