About John T. Braun, MD

Dr. Braun is an accomplished spine surgeon and researcher who treats scoliosis and other complex spine deformities and disorders in children and adults. Dr. Braun specializes in the treatment of scoliosis without fusion, using minimally invasive anterior vertebral tethering techniques - also called vertebral body tethering (VBT) or simply tethering. Dr. Braun pioneered this technique as an alternative to fusion surgery for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, performing the first successful tethering procedure in 2010 after more than a decade of basic science research and pre-clinical testing.

Dr. Braun received his MD from Cornell. He completed an orthopedic surgery residency at the Hospital for Special Surgery and a spine surgery fellowship at the Twin Cities Scoliosis and Spine Center/University of Minnesota.

After completing an active duty service commitment in the US Air Force from 1995-1999, heading spine programs at both Wilford Hall Medical Center and Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, TX, Dr. Braun then practiced at the University of Utah for the next seven years.

In 2006, Dr. Braun was recruited to lead a scoliosis center of excellence at the University of Vermont as a tenured academic orthopedic spine surgeon. In 2012, Dr. Braun transitioned his pediatric scoliosis practice to Dartmouth, where he served as Head of the Pediatric Spine and Scoliosis Program. Dr. Braun also transitioned his adult spine surgery practice to the University of Vermont Health Network-Central Vermont Medical Center, where he served as head of Orthopedic Spine Surgery for six years.

In 2019, Dr. Braun accepted an academic position at Mass General, Mass General Hospital for Children and Harvard Medical School as a pediatric scoliosis and spine surgeon with the goal of developing a fusionless scoliosis surgery program focused on minimally invasive anterior vertebral tethering.

Clinical Interests:

Treats:

Locations

Mass General: Orthopaedic Associates
55 Fruit Street
Yawkey Center for Outpatient Care, Suite 3E
Boston, MA 02114-2696
617-726-8523
Fax: 617-724-0551

Medical Education

  • MD, Weill Cornell Medical College
  • Residency, Hospital for Special Surgery
  • Fellowship, University of Minnesota

American Board Certifications

  • Orthopaedic Surgery, American Board of Orthopedic Surgery

Accepted Insurance Plans

Note: This provider may accept more insurance plans than shown; please call the practice to find out if your plan is accepted.


Research

Dr. Braun’s research has focused on scoliosis for over 20 years, primarily in the areas of fusionless scoliosis surgery and scoliosis genetics. In 1998, Dr. Braun established a novel experimental model for progressive scoliosis that allowed for the study of various fusionless scoliosis surgery treatments.

From 1998-2010, this research allowed for analysis of the biology and biomechanics of fusionless treatments and their affects on the histology and biochemistry of the discs, vertebra, and growth plates. Over this time, Dr. Braun accomplished more basic science research and pre-clinical testing of fusionless scoliosis surgery treatments than any other center worldwide. Also during this time, Dr. Braun’s genetic research established adolescent idiopathic scoliosis as a familial condition and identified prognostic genetic markers for scoliosis.

Dr. Braun’s early research provided a foundation for anterior vertebral body tethering as a fusionless scoliosis surgery alternative for patients with severe and progressive adolescent idiopathic scoliosis who wanted to avoid fusion. Since performing the first successful tethering procedure in 2010, Dr. Braun has continued to pioneer this novel treatment with ongoing research. His tethering studies have shown improvements in the 3D deformity of scoliosis, as well as in spinal alignment and balance; demonstrated effectiveness in more mature and less mature patients; and demonstrated a low rate of complications and additional procedures over almost a 10 year period. All of this research set the stage for FDA HDE approval of a first-of-its-kind tethering device for the treatment of scoliosis in August, 2019.

Publications

  • Select publications:

    • Braun JT, Akyuz E, Ogilvie JW, Bachus KN. The Efficacy and Integrity of Shape Memory Alloy Staples and Bone Anchors with Ligament Tethers in the Fusionless Treatment of Experimental Scoliosis. J Bone Joint Surg 87:2038-2051, 2005.
    • Braun JT, Hines JL, Akyuz E, Vallera C, Ogilvie JW. Relative Versus Absolute Modulation of Growth in the Fusionless Treatment of Experimental Scoliosis. Spine 31(16):1776-82, 2006.
    • Ogilvie JW, Braun JT, Argyle V, Nelson L, Meade M, Ward K. The Search for Idiopathic Scoliosis Genes. Spine 31 (6): 679-681, 2006.
    • Akyuz E, Braun JT, Brown N, Bachus K. Static Versus Dynamic Loading in the Mechanical Modulation of Vertebral Growth. Spine. 31(25):E952-E958, 2006.
    • Hunt KJ, Braun JT, Christensen BA. “The Effect of Two Clinically Relevant Fusionless Scoliosis Implant Strategies on the Health of the Intervertebral Disc: Analysis in an Immature Goat Model.” Spine 35(4):371-377, 2010.
    • Braun JT. “Three-Dimensional Analysis of Severe AIS Curve Correction with Anterior Vertebral Tethers.” Twenty-third Annual Meeting on Advanced Spine Techniques, Washington, DC, July 14, 2016.
    • Braun JT. “Anterior Vertebral Tethering in the Treatment of AIS: A Comparison of Skeletally Immature versus More Mature Patients.” 52nd Annual Meeting of the Scoliosis Research Society, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, September 8, 2017.
    • Braun JT. “Complications and Additional Procedures Following Anterior Vertebral Tethering for AIS: An Eight Year Experience.” 52nd Annual Meeting of the Scoliosis Research Society, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, September 19, 2019.