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TriCities Spine Physician Bios

Dr. Jim Brasfield | Dr. Fred Terry | Trish Ann Cook | Mark Mehlferber

Jim C. Brasfield, M.D.Dr. Jim C. Brasfield
Board-Certified Neurosurgeon Specializing in Spine

Dr. Jim Brasfield, main office located in Bristol, is a board-certified neurosurgeon who specializes in spine. In 1985, Dr. Brasfield completed his residency and founded his current medical practice, Bristol Neurosurgical Associates. He has practiced medicine in the TriCities region for more than 20 years, developing a strong reputation with his patients, employers, workers compensation carriers and health insurance plans who all share a desire for high quality medical care.

In 2008, recognizing that the national trend in spine care is to improve care of back and neck pain with a team of spine specialists from complementary disciplines working together, Dr. Brasfield founded TriCities Spine in Bristol, Tennessee. The spine center is a work in progress, with the goal of putting spine surgeons, non-surgical spine specialists and spine therapists under one roof for the convenience of the patient.

In the field of workers compensation, Dr. Brasfield has established a reputation in Tennessee and Virginia as a specialist in the treatment of work-related back and neck injury. Many of his patients are physically active and are involved in physical labor. Dr. Brasfield is keenly aware of his patients’ need for restoration of their previous performance level, and strives to get patients back to work and their recreational activities.

In a quest to improve clinical care and the efficiency of his medical practice, Dr. Brasfield co-founded a medical software company called E-Cure (www.ecure.com) that creates a streamlined, paperless office.

Dr. Brasfield lives in Bristol, Tennessee and has three sons. His hobbies include fishing and flying in the beautiful Appalachian region.

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Dr Fred TerryDr. Fred Terry, D.O.
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Dr. Fred Terry is a specialist in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PMR). He joins TriCities Spine in June 2009 after completing a residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, where he also served as Chief Resident. Dr. Terry is proficient in EMGs which aid in the diagnosis of back and neck pain.

At TriCities Spine, Dr. Terry will be involved in the assessment and treatment of back and neck pain patients, focusing on providing nonsurgical treatment options, including injections and therapy.

Nationally, the specialty of PMR has become one of the preferred specialties for management of back and neck pain, because of the expertise in soft tissue injury and rehab.

Dr. Terry earned his undergraduate degree at Mountain State University in Beckley, WV and his medical degree at West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lewisburg, WV. He completed a preliminary residency in Internal Medicine at Bassett Healthcare, an affiliate of Columbia University.

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Trish Cook, PA-CTrish Ann Cook
Physician Assistant-Certified

Trish Cook, PA-C, has been a Physician Assistant with Bristol Neurosurgical Associates for six years. Trish is a graduate of East Tennessee State University, and received her Physician Assistant training in Roanoke, Virginia. As a Physician Assistant in Bristol Tennessee, Trish serves as a bridge between Dr. Brasfield and his patients, streamlining the delivery of patient care. Trish assists with surgical procedures, performs initial and post-op examinations, offers extensive patient education, is responsive to the immediate needs of the patient, and assures consistency in the overall treatment plan.

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Mark Mehlferber, PA-CMark Mehlferber
Physician Assistant-Certified

Mark Mehlferber, PA-C, helps with patients' evaluations, responding to patient inquiries and assisting in surgical procedures.

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TriCities Spine in Bristol, TN is a by-product of discussions with case managers, rehab nurses and managed care experts on a local and national level who believe that spine care can be improved through a multidisciplinary team approach. TriCities Spine includes a board-certified neurosurgeon who specializes in spine, Dr. Jim Brasfield, teamed with a pain management specialist and spine-specialized physical therapy. TriCities Spine physicians already see a variety of complex cases from across Eastern Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina and Kentucky. TriCities Spine emphasizes a nonsurgical approach to back pain, recognizing that in most cases spine surgery should be the last card to be played after nonsurgical options have been tried. About half of patients are referred to TriCities Spine by other doctors in the region. TriCities Spine also cares for those who injure themselves at the workplace. The strength of TriCities Spine lies in the medical expertise brought in by a variety of specialists who complement each other, including experts in physical medicine and neurosurgery. An internal pain specialist is often able to relieve some back and neck pain symptoms with special injections that enable a patient to bridge to therapy. Dr. Fred Terry specializes in pain relieving lumbar spinal injections and as well as myelograms, which may reveal the amount of damage in the spine. Therapists who specialize in spine use customized hands-on treatments to relieve pain symptoms, along with special exercises to help make the back stronger, more flexible and resistant to injury. If nonsurgical treatments are not successful, Dr. Jim Brasfield is trained and proficient in the latest techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery. Because of the minimally invasive techniques used by Dr. Brasfield, many patients are able to have their spine surgery and then return home the same day to recover in the comfort of their own home.