“Every patient’s pain is unique. My approach is to personalize the care of every person. The impact spinal disorders and musculoskeletal pain have on the functional ability of every individual requires an approach specific to that patient.”

Board Certifications

  • Pain Medicine
  • Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

Areas of Expertise

  • Complex Spine Disorders
  • Neuromodulation
  • Orthopedic & Joint Pain
  • Pelvic & Abdominal Pain

Education

Fellowship

Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
Pain Medicine
Philadelphia, PA
2007

Residency

Georgetown University/National Rehabilitation Hospital
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Washington, DC
2006

Internship

Howard University Hospital
Transitional – Internal Medicine
Washington, DC
2003

Medical School

University of Sint Eustatius, School of Medicine
Doctor of Medicine
Sint Eustatius, Netherlands-Antilles
2002

Undergraduate School

University of Maryland, College Park
Bachelor of Arts in U.S. History
College Park, MD
1996

Hospitals Affiliated With

George Washington University Hospital
Shady Grove Adventist Hospital
Suburban Hospital

Professional Associations

American Academy of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Member-at-Large, Nominating Committee
2015 – 2016

American Academy of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Member
2014 – Present

International Pelvic Pain Society
Member
Present

North American Neuromodulation Society
Member
2009 – Present

Publications

Textbooks/Book Chapters

Pain Medicine: An Interdisciplinary Case-Based Approach. 1st Ed. New York: Oxford. (2015): Hayek S., Shah B., Desai M.J., Smith H., Chemlinsky T.

“Opioids in Abdominal Pain.” Chronic Abdominal Pain. 1st Ed. New York: Springer. (2015): Desai M.J., Gutierrez G., Rodante J.

“Opioids”. Anesthesiology Core Review. 1st ed. New York: McGraw-Hill. (2014): Badri S., Desai M.J.

“Lumbar Discography.” Interventional Pain Medicine. 1st Ed. New York: Oxford. (2012): Desai M.J.

Click here to view the full list of published articles.

Academic Appointments

International Spine, Pain & Performance Center
President, Medical Director
2016 – Present

George Washington University, School of Medicine & Health Sciences
Instructor
2014 – Present

George Washington University Hospital
Director, Outpatient Rehabilitation Center
2009 – 2013

Sibley Memorial Hospital
Director, Sibley Pain Center
2009 – 2013

George Washington Spine & Pain Center
Director, Pain Medicine and Non-Operative Spine Services
2007 – 2013

George Washington University Medical Center
Assistant Professor, Department of Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine and of Neurosurgery
2007 – 2013

George Washington University, School of Medicine
Clerkship Director for Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

George Washington University, School of Medicine
Mentor of Anesthesiology and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Residents

Personal Interests

Dr. Desai enjoys spending time with his children, loved ones, and family. He also enjoys international travel, cooking, and reading. And political discussion–it is after all Washington, DC.

Biography

Mehul J. Desai, MD, MPH, is board certified in Pain Medicine and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. Dr. Desai completed his residency in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the Georgetown University Hospital. During residency, he spent 6 months completing a research fellowship at the National Institutes of Health conducting groundbreaking research into mechanisms of muscle pain. Upon completion of residency, he went on to a fellowship in Pain Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the Department of Anesthesiology. His clinical interests include neuromodulation–specifically spinal cord stimulation and targeted drug delivery, dipsogenic pain, and intradiscal therapies including biologics, complex spinal conditions, pelvic pain, outcomes-based research, and healthcare economics.

Formerly, Dr. Desai was Assistant Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine and of Neurosurgery at the George Washington University Medical Center and served as the director of Pain Medicine and Non-Operative Spine Services of the GW Spine & Pain Center and as the director of Sibley Pain Center at the Sibley Memorial Hospital. Furthermore, he was the director of Outpatient Rehabilitation Center at the George Washington University Hospital. He also served as a clerkship director for Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the George Washington University School of Medicine and mentored residents in both Anesthesiology and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation.

Dr. Desai maintains an avid interest in research, serving as the principle investigator on multiple ongoing clinical trials including studies on radiofrequency ablation and spinal cord stimulation. He serves as a member of the steering committee of the largest clinical trial investigating the efficacy of spinal cord stimulation in chronic low back pain following spine surgery. Dr. Desai has published articles in Pain Practice, Neuromodulation, Pain Physician, Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Pain Medicine and the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. He has authored several book chapters and has two textbooks in progress.

Dr. Desai presents annually at many international and national pain medicine meetings, traveling to Hong Kong, Dubai, China, Italy, and across the United States last year. Furthermore, he serves as a peer educator, hosting physician visits and teaching advanced pain medicine techniques to physicians both nationally and globally.