Joseph Leigh Ferguson, MD| Spine Surgery | MedStar Health

Joseph Leigh Ferguson, MD
Provider is directly employed by MedStar Health

4.6 out of 5 (240 reviews)

Specialities: Spine Surgery

Languages: English


About me

Joseph L. Ferguson is an orthopaedic surgeon who specializes in spinal surgery.

He specializes in:

  • Cervical (neck), thoracic (mid-back) and lumbar (lower-back) pathologies
  • Minimally invasive techniques
  • Lumbar stenosis
  • Lumbar degenerative spine disorders
  • Cervical Stenosis
  • Cervical herniated disks
  • Neck and/or arm pain or weakness
  • Leg pain and weakness
  • Cervical radiculopathy and myelopathy
  • Scoliosis (adult)
  • Surgery: spinal, minimally invasive, microscopic, motion-sparing

Dr. Ferguson believes each patient is unique and requires an individualized, focused, and thorough  treatment approach to address the diagnosis. He approaches each patient-physician relationship as a partnership, with the best outcomes resulting from a collaborative effort. His goal is to help patients and their families understand their conditions and to educate them on all possible options, in order to restore function and relieve pain for a return to an active lifestyle.

In the News:

Clinical areas of focus

  • Cervical Disc Disease
  • Cervical Spine Fusion
  • Complex Spine Deformities
  • Degenerative Spine Conditions
  • Disc Replacement
  • Lumbar Spine Fusion
  • Myelopathy Surgery
  • Robotic Spine Surgery
  • Spine Fracture
  • Spine Revision
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Conditions and procedures

Conditions I treat

  • Abnormal Vertebrae
  • Absent Vertebrae
  • Bulging Disc
  • Cauda Equina Syndrome
  • Cervical Bone Spur
  • Cervical Compression Fracture
  • Cervical Deformity
  • Cervical Disc Degeneration
  • Cervical Disc Disease
  • Cervical Disc Displacement
  • Cervical Herniated Disc
  • Cervical Myelopathy
  • Cervical Radiculopathy
  • Cervical Spinal Stenosis
  • Cervical Spine Fracture
  • Cervical Spondylolisthesis
  • Cervical Spondylosis
  • Coccyx Fracture
  • Coccyx Injury
  • Complex Spine Deformities
  • Compression Fracture
  • Congenital Scoliosis
  • Degenerative Joint Disease Of The Spine
  • Degenerative Spine Conditions
  • Facet Joint Syndrome
  • Failed Back Surgery Syndrome
  • Flatback Syndrome
  • Flatback Syndrome Post Harrington Rods
  • Foot Drag
  • Foot Drop
  • Herniated Disc
  • Intraspinal Abscess
  • Junctional Kyphosis
  • Kyphosis
  • Lordosis
  • Lumbar Disc Disease
  • Lumbar Herniated Disc
  • Lumbar Scoliosis
  • Lumbar Spinal Stenosis
  • Lumbar Spine Fracture
  • Lumbar Spine Injury
  • Lumbar Spine Stress Fracture
  • Lumbar Spondylolisthesis
  • Lumbar Spondylosis
  • Lumbosacral Plexus Lesions
  • Lumbosacral Radiculopathy
  • Myelopathy
  • Neck Arthritis
  • Nerve Compression Of The Cervical Spine
  • Nerve Compression Of The Lumbar Spine
  • Nerve Compression Of The Thoracic Spine
  • Neurogenic Claudication
  • Post Laminectomy Kyphosis
  • Post Laminectomy Syndrome
  • Radiculopathy
  • Ruptured Intervertebral Disc
  • Sciatica
  • Scoliosis
  • Spinal Cord Compression
  • Spinal Cyst
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Spine Arthritis
  • Spine Deformities
  • Spine Deformity
  • Spine Fracture
  • Spine Injury
  • Spine Osteoarthritis
  • Spine Stress Fracture
  • Spondyloarthropathy
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Spondylosis
  • Spondylosis With Myelopathy
  • Tarlov Cyst
  • Thoracic Herniated Disc
  • Thoracic Spinal Stenosis
  • Thoracic Spondylolisthesis
  • Thoracic Spondylosis
  • Vertebral Fracture
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Procedures I perform

  • Anterior Cervical Spine Fusion
  • Anterior Cervical Spine Surgery
  • Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion
  • Anterior Lumbar Spine Fusion
  • Anterior Lumbar Spine Surgery
  • Anterior Spine Fusion
  • Anterior Spine Surgery
  • Artificial Disc Replacement Surgery In The Cervical Spine
  • Back Surgery
  • Cervical Decompression
  • Cervical Herniated Disc Surgery
  • Cervical Laminoplasty
  • Cervical Laminotomy
  • Cervical Spine Fusion
  • Cervical Spine Revision
  • Cervical Spine Surgery
  • Complex Spine Surgery
  • Decompression Laminectomy
  • Direct Lateral Approach
  • Disc Arthroplasty
  • Disc Replacement
  • Disc Surgery
  • Diskectomy
  • Extreme Lateral Interbody Fusion
  • Facet Surgery
  • Herniated Disc Surgery
  • Instrumented Anterior Cervical Discectomy, Fusion (ACDF)
  • Laminectomy
  • Laminoplasty
  • Lateral Access Spine Surgery
  • Low Back Surgery
  • Lumbar Herniated Disc Surgery
  • Lumbar Spine Fracture Surgery
  • Lumbar Spine Fusion
  • Lumbar Spine Surgery
  • Microdiscectomy
  • Microsurgery Of The Cervical Spine
  • Microsurgery Of The Lumbar Spine
  • Minimally Invasive Lumbar Discectomy
  • Minimally Invasive Lumbar Fusion
  • Minimally Invasive Partial Lumbar Discectomy
  • Minimally Invasive Spine Fusion
  • Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion
  • Motion Sparing Spine Surgery
  • Multilevel Cervical Arthroplasty
  • Myelopathy Surgery
  • Navigation Spine Surgery
  • Posterior Cervical Laminectomy And Fusion
  • Posterior Cervical Spine Fusion
  • Posterior Cervical Spine Surgery
  • Posterior Lumbar Laminectomy
  • Posterior Lumbar Laminectomy With Instrumentation And Fusion
  • Posterior Lumbar Spine Fusion
  • Posterior Lumbar Spine Surgery
  • Posterior Spine Fusion
  • Posterior Spine Surgery
  • Posterior Thoracic Spine Fusion
  • Posterior Thoracic Spine Surgery
  • Prone Transpsoas (PTP) Technique
  • Robotic Spine Surgery
  • Sacroiliac Joint Fusion
  • Sacroiliac Joint Surgery
  • Scoliosis Surgery
  • Smith Petersen Osteotomy
  • Spinal Abscess Surgery
  • Spinal Cord Surgery
  • Spinal Cyst Removal
  • Spinal Stenosis Surgery
  • Spine Deformity Correction Surgery
  • Spine Fusion
  • Spine Instrumentation
  • Spine Microsurgery
  • Spine Reconstruction
  • Spine Revision
  • Spine Surgery
  • Spondylosis Surgery
  • Spondylosyndesis
  • Surgery For Sciatica
  • Surgical Treatment Of Myelopathy
  • Thoracic Laminectomy
  • Thoracic Spine Fracture Surgery
  • Thoracic Spine Fusion
  • Thoracic Spine Surgery
  • Transpsoas Approach
  • Tubular Discectomy
  • Vertebrae Surgery
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Practice locations

Distance from Change LocationEnter your Location

5454 Wisconsin Avenue
Suite 1100
Chevy Chase, MD, 20815


Fax 855-385-5335

Get Directions

miles away

Fax 855-385-5335

1120 20th Street Northwest
Front 1
Washington, DC, 20036


Fax 202-877-6602

Get Directions

miles away

Fax 202-877-6602

3800 Reservoir Road Northwest
1 Gorman
Washington, DC, 20007


Fax 202-444-7804

Get Directions

miles away

Fax 202-444-7804


MedStar Medical Group accepts most major health insurance plans. If you are uncertain as to whether your individual health insurance plan is accepted at MedStar Medical Group, please call your insurance company.

  • List of insurance plans we accept
    • Aetna Elect Choice/ EPO (Aetna Health Fund) Innovation Health: Network Only Plus
    • Aetna Quality Point of Service (POS)
    • Aetna USAccess (POS)
    • Aetna Student Health Insurance
    • Aetna Medicare Advantage HMO & PPO Plans
    • CFBCBS BlueChoice HMO
    • CFBCBS Blue Choice Opt Out Plus Open Access (POS)
    • CFBCBS Maryland Point of Service Plan (MPOS)
    • CFBCBS Federal Employee Program (Std. & Basic PPO)
    • CFBCBS Maryland Indemnity or PPO
    • CFBCBS (NCA) Indemnity
    • CIGNA HMO & Network (HMO)
    • CIGNA POS/Network POS
    • Great-West Healthcare POS/CIGNA
    • CIGNA Indemnity
    • Coventry Health Care of Virginia
    • Coventry of Delaware HMO/PPO
    • First Health PPO
    • Tricare Prime
    • Tricare Standard
    • Tricare Extra (Indemnity)
    • Tricare for Life (Medicare Supplemental Plan)
    • MedStar Family Choice - Maryland Health Choice
    • MedStar Select (MedStar Associates' Plan)
    • MedStar Medicare Choice
    • United Healthcare Select HMO - EPO/NPP
    • United Healthcare Select Plus (POS)
    • United Healthcare Choice Plus
    • United Student Resources
    • M.D. IPA (HMO)
    • M.D. IPA Preferred (POS)
    • Optimum Choice Preferred (POS) & OCI Direct (HMO)
    • Mamsi Life & Health (Indem./PPO)
    • Aetna Worker's Compensation Network
    • Coventry Health Care National Network PPO
    • Private Health Care Systems (PHCS) (PPO)
    • United Healthcare Options (PPO) (includes Empire PPO, GEHA, Compass Rose)
    • OneNet PPO, Inc.
    • United Healthcare Choice
    • United Healthcare Core Essential (HMO)
    • Optimum Choice
    • United Healthcare Navigate
    • United Healthcare Compass (HMO)
    • CIGNA HMO Open Access (OA)
    • Network OA
    • POS OA & OA Plus
    • PPO and PPO Plus
    • Choice Fund PPO
    • CFBSBC Blue Preferred PPO
    • HealthyBlue PPO
    • CFBCBS Blue Choice Opt Out Open Access
    • BlueChoice Open Access
    • Blue Choice Advantage & Healthy Blue (HMO, POS)
    • Aetna Traditional Choice (PPO)
    • Innovation Health: Indemnity
    • Aetna Open Choice (PPO)
    • Innovation Health: PPO
    • Aetna Managed Choice (POS)
    • Innovation Health: POS Plus
    • Aetna Elect Choice/ Open Access (POS)
    • Innovation Health: Open Network Only Plus
    • Aetna HMO-Open Access/Select OA/HealthFund/Health Network Option OA
    • Innovation Health: POS
    • Open HMO
    • Opoen HMO Option
    • Open EPO Plus
    • Aetna Managed Choice Open Access (POS)
    • Choice POS & Choice POS II
    • Innovation Health: Open POS Plus
    • Open POS II
    • Aetna HMO
    • Select HMO/HealthFund/Health Network
    • Aetna Innovations: HMO & EPO Plus



Board Certification: American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedic Surgery

Fellowship Program: Rush University Medical Center (2019)

Residency Program: MedStar Georgetown University Hospital (2018)

Medical School: Jefferson Medical College (2013)

News and publications

  • Basques, BA, Ferguson JF, Kunze KN, Phillips, FP. Lumbar Spinal Fusion in the Outpatient Setting: An Update on Management, Surgical Approaches and Planning. Journal of Spine Surgery (accepted, pending publication).
  • Louie PK, Haws BE, Khan JM, Markowitz J, Movassaghi K, Ferguson J, Lopez GD, An HS, Phillips FM. Comparison of Stand-alone Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion versus Open Laminectomy and Posterolateral Instrumented Fusion in the Treatment of Adjacent Segment Disease following Previous Lumbar Fusion Surgery. Spine. Aug 12, 2019 (ePub ahead of print).
  • Ferguson J, Mariorenzi M, Kalantar SB. Anterior cervical decompression and fusion for a single-level disc herniation. Seminars in Spine Surgery. 2014; 26(3): 154-9.
  • Ferguson J, Hwang S, Tataryn Z, Samdani A. Neuromonitoring changes in pediatric spinal deformity surgery: a single-institution experience. Journal of Neurosurgery Pediatrics. 2014; 13(3): 247-54. 
  • Radcliff K, Ferguson JL, Reis-Rodrigues LM, Gruskay J, Levine AM, Albert T, Vaccaro AR. Chapter 24: Traumatic Spondylolisthesis of the Axis (Hangman's Fracture) in Spine Trauma, 2nd edition.  Eds: Zigler JE,  Eismont FJ, Garfin SR, Vaccaro AR, from American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2011.
  • Samdani AF, Cahill PJ, Hwang SW, King J, Edwards A, Fine A, Ferguson J, Betz RR: Larger curve magnitude is associated with markedly increased perioperative complications after scoliosis surgery in patients with spinal cord injury. 18th International Meeting on Advanced Spine Techniques (podium), Copenhagen, Denmark, July 13-16, 2011.
  • Zlotolow DA, Ferguson JL, Knutsen E, Kozin SH. The Natural History of Shoulder Function in Patients with Brachial Plexus Birth Palsy. NARAKAS meeting, May 19-22, 2011, Lisbon, Portugal.
  • Ferguson JL, Zlotolow DA, Kozin SH. Timing of Recovery of Shoulder Function in Patients with Brachial Plexus Birth Palsy. 
    • Poster, AOA Research Symposium, Thomas Jefferson University, March 2nd, 2012
    • E-Poster, Annual Meeting of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand, September 6-8, 2012, Chicago, IL.
  • Ferguson JL, Hwang SW, Stanton P, Fine A, Samdani AF. Neuromonitoring Changes in Pediatric Spinal Deformity Surgery: Single Institution Experience.  New England Neurosurgical Society annual meeting, June 21-23, 2012.

Ratings and reviews

  • Provider explained things understandably

  • Provider listened carefully

  • Provider knew medical history

  • Provider showed respect

  • Provider spent enough time with patient

  • Sep 28, 2022

    Listened intently while stopping to get a more detailed understanding of injuries sustained. Also very caring and through during examination.

  • Sep 27, 2022

    I really liked him

  • Sep 14, 2022

    I didn't really get a prognosis that I could look up to learn more about. I knew coming in it was likely a nerve being pinched by a disc based on googling my symptoms. After leaving my appointment I didn't really have any more information about the likely cause even after an x-ray. An attempt to name it even if there were 2 or 3 possibilities would have given me a better direction to learn more about my injury and potential future complications. He did a great job with discussing treatment but not as great with what he thought it could be. Is it age related? Caused by an injury? Will it get worse in the future or was it just too much activity? Do I have to stop going back exercises and lifting weights with compound movements at the gym or would that be helpful to prevent Injury In the future? I could look all this up If I knew why my disc was pinching a nerve but I would be totally guessing If I just googled "pinched nerve disc spine".