Clinical Focus

In his clinical practice, Dr. Zunkeler cares for individuals with neurosurgical conditions involving the brain, spine, and peripheral nerves. We hope that the collection of topics regarding General Neurosurgery, Brain Injury and concussion, Spine injury, Age 50+ healthy spine, Age 50+ healthy brain, and Second opinions will help explain his clinical interests.


General Neurosurgery

General neurosurgery Dr. Zünkeler has practiced general adult neurosurgery since first starting in Baltimore in 1997. General neurosurgery encompasses the nonoperative and operative treatment of conditions of the brain, spine, and peripheral nerves. The majority of patients seen by general neurosurgeons do not require a [...]


Brain injury and concussion

Brain injury and concussion Traumatic brain injury (TBI) ranges from very mild to severe and is one of the most common types of injury in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) , about 2.87 million TBI-related emergency department [...]


Spine Injury

The spine and the spinal cord The bony spine usually has 24 vertebrae: 7 cervical, 12 thoracic, and 5 lumbar. In the spine model I am holding in the picture above, the yellow pieces are the vertebra, which, together with the tailbone (sacrum), make up [...]


Age 50 plus Healthy Spine

Effects of aging on the spine Back pain is common and affects almost all people at some time during their lives. Many older individuals have back and neck pain, which is often "nonspecific," meaning that there is no single, easily identifiable cause. Having back or [...]


Age 50 plus Healthy Brain

Watercolor of Lake Constance painted by Brigitte Zünkeler, my mother. A healthy brain More than any other organ or part of our body, our brain defines who we are. Our consciousness, thoughts, feelings, intentions, fears, hopes, and intellect are encoded in the many millions [...]


Second opinions

Care philosophy Whenever possible, nonoperative and less invasive treatments are preferable to surgeries or other invasive procedures. In some cases, surgery is medically necessary and has a better chance of success than ongoing nonoperative treatment. Second opinions A patient who has already consulted [...]