Rochester, Minnesota


Since joining Mayo Clinic in 1977, J. D. Bartleson, Jr., M.D., has researched and published articles related to headache, spine disease and other clinical conditions.

Along with Mayo Clinic colleagues, Dr. Bartleson was the first to describe and publish what is now known as headache and neurologic deficits with cerebrospinal fluid lymphocytosis (HaNDL).

He was also the first to publish research regarding stroke-like migraine after radiation therapy (SMART) syndrome.

Dr. Bartleson is the coauthor of a textbook on spine disease, Spine Disorders: Medical and Surgical Management.

Focus areas

  • New headache disorders, such as HaNDL syndrome and SMART syndrome
  • Pros and cons of opioid analgesic therapy for chronic low back pain
  • Spine conditions, including lumbar spinal stenosis, cervical spondylotic myelopathy and unusual causes of cauda equina syndrome
  • Spondylotic spine emergencies
  • Patient education in neurology

Significance to patient care

Dr. Bartleson’s research has identified new conditions and clarified old ones. His publications can guide practitioners to appropriate and inappropriate diagnostic tests, inform them about expected prognosis and guide therapeutic interventions.

Professional highlights

Dr. Barlteson's recent presentations include:

  • Presenter, Ecuadorian Congress of Neurology: When and how to investigate the patient with headache; and Chronic daily headache: Systematic approach and treatment. Quito, Ecuador, 2011.
  • Presenter, Medical Symposium 2010, Monongahela Valley Hospital: Advances in the treatment of migraine. Monongahela, Pennsylvania, 2010.
  • Presenter, Neurology Grand Rounds, University of Minnesota: How to be sure your patient education is educating patients. Minneapolis, Minnesota 2009.
  • Keynote Speaker, Iowa Neurological Association Annual Meeting: diagnosis and management of common spine conditions. Coralville, Iowa, 2008.
  • Invited plenary presentation, American Academy of Neurology 2007 Annual Meeting: How should we treat the patient with persistent painful lumbosacral radiculopathy? Boston, Massachusetts, 2007.


Administrative Appointment

  1. Emeritus, Department of Neurology

Academic Rank

  1. Professor of Neurology


  1. Resident - Neurology University of Michigan Medical Center
  2. Internship - Straight Medicine Evanston Hospital, Northwestern University Medical School
  3. MD Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
  4. BS - Medicine Northwestern University

Clinical Studies

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