Centers & Specialties

Cancer Center

Clinical Interests
  • Spinal Tumor (Primary and Metastatic)
  • Scoliosis
  • Spinal deformity
  • Chordoma
  • Cervical deformity
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Cervical myelopathy
  • Spinal fusion
Medical Education
  • MD, Chicago Medical School
  • Residency, University of Illinois College of Medicine
  • Fellowship, Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Board Certifications
  • Neurosurgery
  • Boston: Massachusetts General Hospital
Insurances Accepted
  • Aetna Health Inc.
  • AllWays Health (NHP) - ACD
  • AllWays Health (NHP) - PBO
  • Beech Street
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Blue Care 65
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Indemnity
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Managed Care
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Partners Plus
  • BMC HealthNet Mass Health MCO/ACO
  • Cigna (PAL #'s)
  • Commonwealth Care Alliance
  • Fallon Community HealthCare
  • Great-West Healthcare (formally One Health Plan)
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Plan - ACD
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Plan - PBO
  • Health Care Value Management (HCVM)
  • Humana/Choice Care PPO
  • Maine Community Health Options (MCHO)
  • MassHealth
  • Medicare
  • Medicare - ACD
  • OSW - Connecticut
  • OSW - Maine
  • OSW - New Hampshire
  • OSW - Rhode Island
  • OSW - Vermont
  • Private Health Care Systems (PHCS)
  • Railroad Medicare
  • Senior Whole Health
  • TriCare
  • Tufts Health Plan
  • Unicare
  • United Healthcare (non-HMO) - ACD
  • United Healthcare (non-HMO) - PBO
  • Well Sense Pediatrics

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

Patient Age Group
Provider Gender


Dr. John H. Shin is a board certified neurosurgeon at the MGH who specializes in complex spinal reconstruction surgery. He is a fellowship-trained spine surgeon, having completed a combined orthopedic and neurosurgery spine surgery fellowship at the Cleveland Clinic. He also completed fellowship training in stereotactic spine radiosurgery and spine oncology. Dr. Shin operates using modern techniques in spine instrumentation and the latest advances in surgical technology and imaging. 

Dr. Shin's expertise is primarily in adult spinal deformity and spinal oncology. He also specializes in cervical myelopathy, scoliosis, cranio-cervical disorders, chin-on-chest deformity, thoracolumbar disorders, instrumentation failure, spinal revision surgery, lumbar stenosis, and spondylolisthesis.

He treats the full range of cancers and tumors affecting the spinal column, both primary and metastatic.  He works together with multidisciplinary teams of medical and radiation oncologists to provide comprehensive care for patients with these challenging tumors. He is an advocate for collaborative, team-based care. His research laboratory focuses on identifying molecular markers of spine metastases and developing targeted therapies to the spine.

Dr. Shin is a sideline neuro trauma consultant for the National Football League and an expert in the surgical management of traumatic spinal column injuries.

Research & Publications

Select Publications

Shin JH, Benzel EC: Vertebral Metastases: Ventral and Dorsal Approach versus Lateral Extracavitary Transpedicular, in Jandial, Garfin, Ames, Deviren (eds): Best Evidence for Spine Surgery: 20 Cardinal Cases, 2012

Shin JH, Angelov L: Stereotactic Radiosurgery for Spinal Metastases, in Benzel EC (ed): Spine Surgery: Techniques, Complications, and Avoidance Management, 3rd edition, 2012

Shin JH, Chao ST, Angelov L: Stereotactic Radiosurgery for Spinal Metastases: Update on Treatment Strategies. J Neurosurg Sci (55)3:197-209, 2011

Refai D, Shin JH, Iannotti C, Benzel EC: Dorsal Approaches to Intradural Extramedullary Tumors of the Craniovertebral Junction. J Craniovert Jun Spine 1(1):49-54, 2010

Shin JH, Kalfas IH, Benzel EC, Steinmetz MP: Image Guidance in Fixation of the Craniovertebral Junction, in Dickman CA, Spetzler RF, Sonntag VKH, Bambikidis N(eds): Surgery of the Craniovertebral Junction, 2nd edition, 2012

Shin JH, Steinmetz MP, Benzel EC, Krishnaney AA: Dorsal versus Ventral Surgery for Cervical OPLL: Considerations for Approach Selection and Review of Surgical Outcomes. Neurosurg Focus 30(3)E8, 2011

Shin JH, Krishnaney AA: Idiopathic Ventral Spinal Cord Herniation: A Rare Presentation of Tethered Cord. Neurosurg Focus 29(1):E10, 2010

Shin JH, Hoh DJ, Kalfas IH: Iliac Screw Fixation using Computer-Assisted CT Image Guidance: Technical Note. Neurosurgery, 2012

Lubelski D, Abdullah KG, Steinmetz MP, Benzel EC, Mroz TE, Shin JH: Lateral Extracavitary, Costotransversectomy, and Transthoracic Thoracotomy Approaches to the Thoracic Spine: Review of Techniques and Complications, J Spinal Disord, 2012

News & Events

  • Surgical Management of Degenerative Cervical Spine Disorders

    This educational video highlights the various surgical approaches to the cervical spine. Common signs and symptoms of cervical spinal cord and nerve root compression are also discussed.

  • Spinal Metastases & Stereotactic Radiosurgery

    Radiosurgery has shifted the paradigm of treating patients by minimizing the morbidity of conventional surgery and, focusing on tumor control.

  • NeuroBlast e-Newsletter December 2013

    In this issue: spinal metastases & stereotactic radiosurgery; skull base tumors & endoscopic surgery; pediatric epilepsy dietary therapy; Alzheimer Disease: tau pathology; drug & gene discovery; early treatment; preclinical diagnostic tools.


Neurosurgical Associates
15 Parkman Street
Boston, MA 02114-3117
Phone: 617-726-5252
Fax: 617-643-4680