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Robert A. Lavin, MD

Academic Title:

Associate Professor

Primary Appointment:

Neurology

Additional Title:

Director of Chronic Pain Management for the Maryland VA Health Care System

Location:

Baltimore VA Medical Center, 4A-150

Phone (Primary):

(410) 605-7040

Fax:

(410) 605-7937

Education and Training

  • B.S. - Brandeis University, Waltham, MA, 05/1976, Biology
  • M.S. - University of Washington, Seattle, WA, 08/1979, Genetic
  • M.D. - The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health, Sciences, Washington, DC, 05/1983, Medical School
  • Internship - Washington Hospital Center, Washington, DC, 06/1984, Internal Medicine
  • Residency - The George Washington University Hospital, Washington, DC, 6/1986, Anesthesiology
  • Residency - Johns Hopkins University Hospital and Sinai Hospital combined program, Baltimore, MD, 06/1989, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Biosketch

As Director of the Chronic Pain Service at the VA Maryland Health Care System (VAMHCS) for the past 14 years, I have access to many potential subjects with refractory chronic non-malignant pain who have failed accepted medical and interventional pain treatments. I spend 88% of my time at the Baltimore VA Medical Center where I interact on a daily basis with primary care, interventional pain, and surgery providers, who serve as a source of additional subjects.

Additionally, I have clinical proficiency from my experiences at the Johns Hopkins Pain Service and the Johns Hopkins Occupational Injury Clinic, where I routinely provided chronic pain management for more than 20 years. I have had considerable experience with the VA IRB system by virtue of serving as PI for four successful doctoral research candidates and completing a pilot acupuncture project. My peer-reviewed research publications reflect my interestS in chronic pain management in the elderly and the injured worker population. Additional research interests include the use of opioids for the management of chronic non-malignant pain and the use of non-pharmacological modalities to treat pain.

Research/Clinical Keywords

Chronic pain, Opioids, Occupational rehabilitation

Highlighted Publications

Lavin R, Park J. A Characterization of Pain in Racially and Ethnically Diverse Older Adults: A Review of the Literature. Journal of Applied Gerontology 2014;33(3):258–290. Published online before print September 17, 2012, doi: 10.1177/0733464812459372

Lavin RA, Tao X, Yuspeh L, Bernacki EJ. Temporal relationship between lumbar spine surgeries, return to work and workers' compensation costs in a cohort of injured workers. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2013 May; 55(5):539-43.

Lavin RA, Tao X, Yuspeh L, Bernacki EJ. Impact of the Combined Use of Benzodiazepines and Opioids on Workers' Compensation Claim Cost. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2014 Sept.; 56(9):973-978.

Lavin RA, Tao XG, Yuspeh L, Bernacki EJ. Relationship between Opioid Prescribing Patterns and Claim Duration and Cost. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2016 Mar.; 58(3):e90-3.

Rogers AT, Bai G, Lavin RA, Anderson GF. Higher Hospital Spending on Occupational Therapy Is Associated with Lower Readmission Rates. Medical Care Research and Review. Accepted for publication Aug. 5, 2016. DOI: 10.1177/1077558716666981.

Additional Publication Citations

Tao X, Lavin R, Yuspeh L, Bernacki EJ. Natural History of Opioid Dosage Escalation Post-Injury: A Cohort Study of Injured Workers in the State of Louisiana. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2012 Apr.; 54(4):439-444.

Tao X. Lavin RA. Yuspeh L. Bernacki EJ. Impact of the combined use of opioids and surgical procedures on workers' compensation cost among a cohort of injured workers in the state of Louisiana. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2012 Dec; 54(12):1513-19.

Tao X, Lavin RA, Yuspeh L, Bernacki EJ. Implications of Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injections after Lumbar Surgery. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2014 Feb.; 56(2):195-203.

Park J., Lavin R, Couturier B. Choice of Nonpharmacological Pain Therapies by Ethnically Diverse Older Adults. Pain Management. 2014 Nov.; 4(6):389–406.

Tao X, Lavin RA, Yuspeh L, Weaver VM, Bernacki EJ. The Association of the Use of Opioid and Psychotropic Medications with Workers' Compensation Claim Costs and Lost Work Time. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2015 Feb.; 57(2):196-201.

Tao X, Lavin RA, Yuspeh L, Bernacki EJ. Is Obesity Associated with Adverse Workers' Compensation Claims Outcomes? A Pilot Study. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2015 July; 57(7):795-800.

Tao X, Lavin RA, Yuspeh L, Weaver VM, Bernacki EJ. Is Early Prescribing of Opioid and Psychotropic Medications Associated With Delayed Return to Work and Increased Final Workers’ Compensation Cost? Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2015 Dec.; 57(12):1315-1318.

Tao XG, Su P, Kalia-Satwah N, Yuspeh L, Lavin RA, Bernacki EJ.  Is Obesity Associated with Adverse Workers' Compensation Claims Outcomes? Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2016 Sept.; 58(9):880-884.

Kalia N, Lavin RA, Yuspeh L, Bernacki E, Tao XG. A Seven-Year Longitudinal Claim Analysis to Assess the Factors Contributing to the Increased Severity of Work-Related Injuries. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 2016 Sept.; 58(9):e320-324.

Research Interests

My research interests include chronic pain management in the elderly and in the injured worker population. My additional interests include non-pharmacologic pain treatment and the use of opioids for chronic non-malignant pain management. 

Clinical Specialty Details

  • Board Certified, American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
  • Board Certified, American Association of Electrodiagnostic Medicine

Awards and Affiliations

  • Invited member, American Academy of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Self-Assessment Exam (SAE) Committee
  • Invited topic editor, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Knowledge NOW (on-line publication)

Grants and Contracts

Pending Grant Support

Funding Agency: Focused Ultrasound Foundation (2016)
(peer reviewed, private foundation)
Phase 1 Clinical trial of MR guided focused ultrasound (FUS) thalamotomy of central lateral thalamic nucleus for the treatment of medication-refractory neuropathic pain
Role: Co-Investigator

Community Service

  • Invited participant, V.A. Human Rights Committee
  • Appointed, Natalie M. LaPrade Maryland State Medical Cannabis Commission