James D. Weimar, MD, PhD

Minimally Invasive Spine Surgeon

My favorite part is when you can intervene in a person’s life and watch them improve from either surgical or non-surgical care.

His specialty is minimally invasive spine surgery. He trained at one of the best neurosurgical programs and one of the top 10 busiest trauma centers in the country. But Dr. James Weimar would rather see his patients relieve back pain through physical activity over anything else. He follows his own advice by staying active himself. Dr. Weimar’s deep love of the outdoors drives him to engage in activities like mountain climbing and skiing. These types of activities require a strong core, which he says is key to avoiding back pain.

Dr. Weimar also recommends simple lifestyle changes for preventing spine issues, like being mindful of body positions that may lead to back pain. However, when back pain does transpire, Dr. Weimar strives to help his patients live a pain-free life through non-surgical techniques before ever considering surgery.

“We are able to help people get better with conservative options 50-60 percent of the time,” he says.

When non-surgical treatments aren’t successful, Dr. Weimar turns to minimally invasive spine surgery. At Kansas Spine & Specialty Hospital, Dr. Weimar is the only surgeon who performs this type of operation. It is a procedure that involves small incisions, preventing significant scarring and reducing healing time. It also uses image-guided technology so Dr. Weimar and his associates get a clear view of the operation, even with the minor incisions.

Whether it is through minimally invasive surgery or conservative treatments, Dr. Weimar is determined to lead his patients to a better quality of life.

“My favorite part is when you can intervene in a person’s life and watch them improve from either surgical or non-surgical care. They are usually very grateful and that is one of the best parts of my job,” he says.

Dr. Weimar spent his undergraduate years at Millsaps College in Jackson, MS. His diligent and determined persona was evident early on in his collegiate career. He dedicated himself to both school and athletics, graduating with a biology degree and playing football for Millsaps.

After graduation, Dr. Weimar moved to Colorado where he indulged in his love for outdoor sports. After spending time in Colorado, he attended Albany Medical College in New York. There he studied biochemistry and molecular biology and earned his PhD in 1999. He then traveled back home to UT Memphis and the Semmes-Murphey Clinic where he completed medical school and neurosurgical training.

Neurosurgery is a technically demanding subdivision of the medical field and Dr. Weimar says this is what he enjoys most about his work. Each operation requires problem solving, and he thrives on finding a solution to each patient’s case. Dr. Weimar has practiced at Kansas Spine & Specialty Hospital since completing his neurosurgical training in 2009.

Dr. Weimar married his wife Tricia in 1994 and they have four boys who keep them young, but also very busy.