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  • photo of phoenix neurosurgeon kris smith

    Kris A. Smith, MD

    Neurosurgeon (602) 406-3181

    Kris Smith, MD, is a neurosurgeon at Barrow Neurological Institute. He is the director of the Stereotactic-Functional-Epilepsy Fellowship Program, the Hypothalamic Hamartoma Program, and the Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus Program. He also serves as co-director of neurosurgical oncology and radiology services, including Gamma Knife, CyberKnife, and Zap-X.

    Dr. Smith’s expertise includes the comprehensive management of brain tumors and the surgical treatment of medically refractory epilepsy. He strives to balance minimally invasive techniques with the extent of resection needed to optimize patient outcomes. Dr. Smith is a firm believer in patient education and a holistic approach to treatment, including the use of precision medicine and a focus on quality of life.

    Dr. Smith earned his bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University and his medical degree from the University of Nevada—Reno School of Medicine. He completed a general surgery internship at the Phoenix Integrated Surgical Residency Program at Banner—University Medical Center Phoenix and his neurosurgery residency at Barrow. Dr. Smith trained in Gamma Knife radiosurgery at the University of Pittsburg and at Karolinska Institute in Stockhold, Sweden, where stereotactic radiosurgery was originally developed. He completed an enfolded fellowship in epilepsy surgery at the Cleveland Clinic.

    As a medical student, Dr. Smith published his first paper on a new model of epilepsy and the novel findings of the importance of the GABA-B receptor. He presented his work at an international pharmacology meeting. These were the first of hundreds of publications and presentations on various topics in neurosurgery throughout his career.

    Please call (602) 406-3181 to request an appointment with Dr. Smith.

    Insurance Accepted
    Education & Training
    • Residency, Barrow Neurological Institute, Neurosurgery, 1990-1996
    • General Surgery Internship, Phoenix Integrated Surgical Residency Program, 1989-1990
    • MD, University of Nevada School of Medicine, 1989
    • BS, Brigham Young University, 1984
    Professional Memberships
    • American Medical Association
    • American Society for Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery
    • Arizona Foundation for Medical Care
    • Joint Section on Tumors, AANS & CNS
    • Joint Section on Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery, AANS & CNS
    • Maricopa County Medical Society
    • North American Skull Base Society
    • Rocky Mountain Neurosurgical Society
    • American Association of Neurological Surgeons
    • Congress of Neurological Surgeons
    • American Medical Association
    • Alpha Omega Alpha
    • Phi Kappa Phi
    • Treasurer, Arizona Neurosurgical Society
    Honors and Awards
    • Academy Cup, Rocky Mountain Neurosurgical Society, Best Scientific Presentation, 2008
    • Resident Award, Rocky Mountain Neurosurgical Society and American Association of Neurological Surgeons, 1995
    • General Surgery Internship, Phoenix Integrated Surgical Residency Program, 1990
    • Diplomat of the American Board of Medical Examiners, Passed Part III of National Boards, 1990
    • Overall Excellence in Psychiatry, 1989
    • Outstanding Student in Neurosciences, 1989
    • Alpha Omega Alpha, 1989
    • Outstanding Student in Behavioral Science, 1987
    • Research Convocation Award for Best Student Research Presentation, 1987
    Selected Publications
    1. Smith KA, Ashby LS, Gonzalez LF, Brachman DG, Thomas T, Coons SW, Battaglia M, Scheck A. Prospective trial of gross-total resection with Gliadel wafers followed by early postoperative Gamma Knife radiosurgery and conformal fractionated radiotherapy as the initial treatment for patients with radiographically suspected, newly diagnosed glioblastoma multiforme. J Neurosurg. Dec 2008;109 Suppl:106-117.
    2. Horn EM, Feiz-Erfan I, Bristol RE, Lekovic GP, Goslar PW, Smith KA, Nakaji P, Spetzler RF. Treatment options for third ventricular colloid cysts: comparison of open microsurgical versus endoscopic resection. Neurosurgery. Apr 2007;60(4):613-618; discussion 618-620.
    3. Bristol RE, Gore P, Treiman D, Smith KA. Resolution of Status Epilepticus after Subdural Gride Recording and Multiple Subpial Transections. Barrow Quarterly. 2006;22(2):8-11.
    4. Lekovic GP, Smith KA, Feiz-Erfan I, Porter RW, Biggs C, Shetter AG. Radiosurgery of Jugular Foramen Tumors. Operative Techniques in Neurosurgery. 2005;8(1):54-60.
    5. Wu J, Ellsworth K, Ellsworth M, Schroeder KM, Smith K, Fisher RS. Abnormal benzodiazepine and zinc modulation of GABAA receptors in an acquired absence epilepsy model. Brain Res. Jul 9 2004;1013(2):230-240.
    6. Deshmukh VR, Smith KA, Rekate HL, Coons S, Spetzler RF. Diagnosis and management of pineocytomas. Neurosurgery. Aug 2004;55(2):349-355; discussion 355-347.
    7. Javedan SP, Manwaring K, Smith KA. Treatment of posterior third ventricular central neurocytoma with endoscopic biopsy, endoscopic third ventriculostomy and stereotactic radiosurgery. Minim Invasive Neurosurg. Jun 2003;46(3):165-168.
    8. Baev KV, Greene KA, Marciano FF, Samanta JE, Shetter AG, Smith KA, Stacy MA, Spetzler RF. Physiology and pathophysiology of cortico-basal ganglia-thalamocortical loops: theoretical and practical aspects. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. May 2002;26(4):771-804.
    9. Smith KA, Spetzler RF. Supratentorial-infraoccipital approach for posteromedial temporal lobe lesions. J Neurosurg. Jun 1995;82(6):940-944.

    View complete list of publications on PubMed

    About Barrow Neurological Institute
    Since our doors opened as a regional specialty center in 1962, we have grown into one of the premier destinations in the world for neurology and neurosurgery. Our experienced, highly skilled, and comprehensive team of neurological specialists can provide you with a complete spectrum of care–from diagnosis through outpatient neurorehabilitation–under one roof. Barrow Neurological Institute: Discover. Educate. Heal.