Department Center for Spine Health
Primary Location Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Type of Doctor Adults Only
Languages English
Surgeon Yes
Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Primary Location

Cleveland Clinic Main Campus


Additional Locations

Specialties & Treatments

Treatment & Services

  • Cervical Deformity Surgery
  • Cervical Spine Surgery
  • Complex Spinal Instrumentation
  • Complex Spinal Reconstruction
  • Complex Spinal Surgery
  • Computed Tomography (CT Scan)
  • Deformity Correction
  • Kyphoplasty
  • Lumbar Spine Surgery
  • Microsurgical and Minimally Invasive Techniques
  • Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Surgery
  • Neck Surgery
  • Scoliosis Surgery
  • Spinal Fusion
  • Spinal Surgery
  • Spine Decompression
  • Spine Reconstruction
  • Spine Tumor Removal And Reconstruction
  • Surgery For Spinal Tumors
  • Surgery For Spinal Vascular Malformations
  • Thoracic Spine Surgery
  • X-Ray
View all 23 Treatment & Services +

Specialty in Diseases & Conditions

  • Arachnoid Cysts
  • Back Pain in Athletes
  • Cervical Infections
  • Cervical Myelopathy
  • Cervical Tumors
  • Chronic Back Pain
  • Complex Spinal Disorders
  • Degenerative Spine Disease
  • Facet Joint Syndrome
  • Failed Back Surgery Syndrome
  • Herniated Disc
  • Infection of the Spine
  • Kyphosis
  • Lumbar Radiculopathy
  • Musculoskeletal Impairments
  • Musculoskeletal Pain
  • Myelography
  • Neck Pain
  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Radiculopathy
  • Sciatica
  • Spinal Cancer
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Spinal Deformity
  • Spinal Fractures
  • Spinal Metastases
  • Spinal Neoplasms
  • Spinal Vascular Disorders
  • Spine Pain
  • Spine Tumors
  • Spondylitis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Spondylolysis
  • Spondylosis
  • Stenosis - Spinal
View all 36 Specialties +


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About Richard Schlenk, MD

Dr. Schlenk is the Neurosurgery Residency Training Program Director.
Education & Professional Highlights

Education & Professional Highlights


Education & Fellowships

Fellowship - Cleveland Clinic
Spinal Surgery
Cleveland, OH USA

Residency - University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-University Hospital
Newark, NJ USA

Internship - University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-University Hospital
General Surgery
Newark, NJ USA

Medical Education - UMDNJ - New Jersey Medical School
Newark, NJ USA

Undergraduate - Kean University
Union, NJ USA

Professional Highlights

  • Neurosurgery Residency Training Program Director

Specialty Interests

Complex Spinal Reconstruction, Spinal Tumors

Awards & Honors

  • Scholarship in Teaching Award 2008
  • Teacher of the Year, 2004-05, 2005-06
  • Mayfield Award in Spinal Cord Research
  • American Red Cross Hero, 2004


  • American Board of Neurological Surgeons: Diplomat
  • American Association of Neurological Surgeon: Member
  • Congress of Neurological Surgeon: Member
  • AANS/CNS Joint Spine Section: Member
Research & Publications

Research & Publications

See publications for Richard Schlenk, MD.

(Disclaimer: This search is powered by PubMed, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. PubMed is a third-party website with no affiliation with Cleveland Clinic.)

Industry Relationships

Industry Relationships

Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists may collaborate with the pharmaceutical or medical device industries to help develop medical breakthroughs or provide medical expertise or education. Cleveland Clinic strives to make scientific advances that will benefit patient care and support outside relationships that promise public benefit. In order for the discoveries of Cleveland Clinic physicians' and scientists' laboratories and investigations to benefit the public, these discoveries must be commercialized in partnership with industry. As experts in their fields, Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists are often sought after by industry to consult, provide expertise and education.

To assure professional and commercial integrity in such matters, Cleveland Clinic maintains a program that reviews these collaborations and, when appropriate, puts measures in place to minimize bias that may result from ties to industry. Cleveland Clinic publicly discloses the names of companies when (i) its physicians/scientists receive $5,000 or more per year (or, in rare cases, equity or stock options) for speaking and consulting, (ii) its physicians/scientists serve as a fiduciary, (iii) its physicians/scientists receive or have the right to receive royalties or (iv) its physicians/ scientists hold any equity interest for the physician's/scientist's role as inventor, discoverer, developer, founder or consultant.* In publicly disclosing this information, Cleveland Clinic tries to provide information as accurately as possible about its physicians' and scientists' connections with industry.

As of 8/23/2019, Dr. Schlenk has reported no financial relationship with industry that is applicable to this listing. In general, patients should feel free to contact their doctor about any of the relationships and how the relationships are overseen by Cleveland Clinic. To learn more about Cleveland Clinic's policies on collaborations with industry and innovation management, go to our Integrity in Innovation page.

Public Health Service-Reportable Financial Conflicts of Interest. Cleveland Clinic scientists and physicians engage in basic, translational and clinical research activities, working to solve health problems, enhance patient care and improve quality of life for patients. Interactions with industry are essential to bringing the researchers' discoveries to the public, but can present the potential for conflicts of interest related to their research activities. Click here to view a listing of instances where Cleveland Clinic has identified a Public Health Service (PHS)-Reportable Financial Conflict of Interest and has put measures in place to ensure that, to the extent possible, the design, conduct and reporting of the research is free from bias.

* Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists subscribe to the guidance presented in the PhRMA Code on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals and the AdvaMed Code of Ethics on Interactions with Health Care Professionals. As such, gifts of substantial value are generally prohibited.

Patient Satisfaction Reviews

179 Patient Satisfaction Reviews

The Patient Satisfaction Rating is an average of all responses to the care provider related questions shown below from our nationally-recognized Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey. Patients that are treated in outpatient or hospital environments may receive different surveys, and the volume of responses will vary by question.

Responses are measured on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best score.

The comments are submitted by patients and reflect their views and opinions. The comments are not endorsed by and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cleveland Clinic.

Overall Star Ratings
4.9 out of 5
Explains 4.9
Listens 4.8
Courtesy, Respect & Concern 4.9
Knows Medical History 4.8
Time Spent with Patient 4.9
Patient Rating of Doctor 4.9

28 Patient Comments

Reviewed on Jul 26, 2019

I was directed to Dr Schlenk for a second opinion regarding neck surgery for an ununited unstable odontoid fracture after another surgeon had suggested an occiput to C5 fusion. Dr Schlenk performed a C!/2 fusion with hardware and a bone graft. I am delighted with the result and have much more neck movement than I would have had with the first suggestion. I had absolute confidence in him and his team and have done well!

Reviewed on Jul 25, 2019

Dr. Schlenk and his Fellow(?) were wonderful: kind, caring, listened to questions and concerns, answered thoroughly and with wisdom and in laymen's terms. Took the time to read the MRI and give serious thought to best "next steps/procedures." Dr. Schlenk came highly recommended...and, it now appears, for good reason.

Reviewed on Jul 18, 2019

I jokingly told him that I was hoping for a magical cure. I feel he gave me the best possible options and actually cared. I had been to another doctor and was clueless but I truly understand now. I m extremely happy with the care he is providing.

Reviewed on Jul 12, 2019

the doctor himself stuck is head in the door to say he was running behind and would be right with us. We know it's hard to run on time when seeing patients. Acknowledging that fact, goes along way with most people.

Reviewed on Jul 12, 2019

we came over 900 miles to see the MD, so we knew we needed to be patient as well as the provider did not rush through our appointment, but took the time to discuss everything in detail

Reviewed on Jun 27, 2019

Dr Schlenk is the all around Best!!!!

Reviewed on Jun 14, 2019

Dr. Schlenk was a great advocate for my health and helped me make a life changing decision. I am grateful for his service.

Reviewed on Jun 14, 2019

Dr. Schlenk was very nice, pleasant, he listened, was informative, proffesional

Reviewed on Jun 6, 2019

Dr. Schlenk took all the time I required to fully explain test results and all available options. Great bedside manner, has a very good sense of humor and very professional.

Reviewed on May 31, 2019

Dr Schlenk did an excellent job explaining the problem and his procedure.

Reviewed on May 23, 2019

Dr Schlenck very attentively sat down with me to explain his role in the care for my back/spine. referring me to Pain Management. Explaining surgery would not be necessary yet if ever.

Reviewed on May 23, 2019

She made me feel at ease about having surgery on my back and about the doctor.

Reviewed on May 23, 2019

Awesome care from Dr Schlenk and his team

Reviewed on May 9, 2019

God sent. Fantastic Dr. Fantastic person.

Reviewed on Apr 25, 2019

Dr. Schlenk was truly professional AND empathetic to my concerns and issues. Excellent eye contact, did not make me feel he was in a hurry or that I was rushed out the door. He made me feel he was committed to helping and finding the best answer for my care. Respected the fact of my love of exercise and running and wanting to help me still be able to continue with increased comfort.

Reviewed on Apr 20, 2019

Loved my dr. & staff. *Dr. Schlenk.

Reviewed on Apr 18, 2019

loved my doctor and all the staff. my Anesthesiologist was excellent.

Reviewed on Apr 10, 2019

I had a previous surgery in Oct.2011 and I would recommend this provider. I have returned to him with some similar issues because of his care.

Reviewed on Mar 23, 2019

I was so worried about my back surgery, but *Dr. Schlenk put me at ease. I will recommend him to anyone needing surgery. He is the BEST.

Reviewed on Mar 20, 2019

I was very impressed with how concerned Dr Schlenk was with my level of pain. he was very comforting that this pain could be fixed and he confident he could help me manage my pain level

Reviewed on Jan 24, 2019

Dr. Schlenk is a very compassionate and caring physician. I felt that he respected me as a human being and not just a paycheck. He took his time with me and he didn't act rushed or make me feel as if I was on a time limit. He wanted to make sure that I understood everything he was saying and that I fully understood our plan before I left. Any surgeon could have just said to me that I needed surgery as soon as possible no matter the risks...but Dr. Schlenk wants me to be in the best possible health before my surgery to prevent infection. Dr. Schlenk is a very caring provider and made me feel valued as a human being and that he truly had my best interests in mind. I highly recommend him to anyone and everyone who is pursuing surgery options. I know I made the right decision by choosing Dr. Schlenk.

Reviewed on Jan 10, 2019

I would highly recommend Dr Schlenk to friends and family members. He explained everything so well and listened just as well. He answered all of the questions my wife and I had and we didn't feel rushed at all. I'm so glad to have found Dr. Schlenk. He's an excellent doctor.

Reviewed on Nov 15, 2018

Doctor took extra time to explain in detail about follow up. I very much appreciate it.

Reviewed on Nov 2, 2018

I live in Florida. I came to Cleveland Clinic only to have Dr. Schlenk perform surgery on me. My entire experience here has been great. Dr. Schlenk not only is a great surgeon, he explained everything, listened carefully and I never felt rushed.

Reviewed on Aug 30, 2018

The waiting time was very long this time but I realize Dr. Schlenk takes time needed for his patients.

Reviewed on Aug 29, 2018

Dr. Schlenk was incredible - spent considerable time with my wife and me, explained my condition and the options clearly.-

Reviewed on Aug 28, 2018

Dr. Schlenk is a caring, thoughtful, well qualified doctor. It was a pleasure and comfort to see him.

Reviewed on Aug 23, 2018

I traveled 1,000 miles to see *Dr. Schlenk. Very skilled and concerned doctor.

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