Alisa Gean-Gersch, MD

Clinical Professor


Alisa D. Gean, MD is a Professor Emerita of Neuroradiology and Adjunct Professor Emerita of Neurology and Neurosurgery at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Dr. Gean obtained both her BS and MD degrees at Stanford University. Following medical school, she did an Internship in Internal Medicine at San Francisco Children’s Hospital, now called California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC). She then moved to Boston where she completed a 4-year Residency program in Diagnostic Radiology and a 2-year Fellowship in Neuroradiology, both at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Gean joined the faculty at UCSF in 1989 as the Chief of Neuroradiology at San Francisco General Hospital. Her primary professional interest is in the field of central nervous system trauma. She also has devoted special attention to the areas of stroke and HIV disease. The sheer volume of patients, extremes of illness, and the unique circumstances of the vulnerable patient population presenting to San Francisco General Hospital have provided her with a wealth of experience and expertise in central nervous system injury and disease. Dr. Gean lectures nationally and internationally on the topic of traumatic brain injury (TBI), and she is a founding member of the Brain and Spine Injury Center (“BASIC”) at UCSF. She has written extensively on the topic of TBI, and is the sole author of the internationally recognized textbook, “Imaging of Head Trauma”. She has consulted with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Department of Defense, and the National Football League on the topic of head injury.

A senior member of the American Society of Neuroradiology, Dr. Gean obtained her Certification of Added Qualifications (CAQ) in 1996 and was recertified in 2006. Dr. Gean served as a National Medical Board Examiner for the American Board of Radiology for both the certification of trainees at the Board examination level as well as for post-fellowship certification at the CAQ level. Dr. Gean has previously held positions as a San Francisco mayoral delegate to the Philippines, Vietnam, and China, and she continues to volunteer as a neuroradiology consultant to the Asia/Pacific Rim. She has delivered over 200 national and international invited lectures, written 4 books, 24 book chapters, and over 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts and scientific abstracts. Dr. Gean's editorial activities have included JAMA, American Journal of Neuroradiology, Radiology, Journal of Trauma, Journal of Neurotrauma, Annals of Neurology, Journal of Neuro-AIDS, and the Journal of Computed Assisted Tomography.

In 2008, Dr. Gean volunteered her clinical expertise at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany to study combat TBI suffered in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. Through this experience, she has devoted her recent academic pursuits to understanding the similarities and differences between civilian brain injury and that suffered in combat, terrorism, and natural disasters. In recognition of that work, Dr. Gean finished another single-authored textbook titled “Brain Injury: Applications from War and Terrorism”.


Brain and spine trauma, central nervous system trauma

Professional Interests:
Craniospinal trauma, maxillofacial and orbital trauma, non-traumatic intracerebral hemorrhage, HIV/AIDS, neuro imaging, MR imaging, traumatic brain injury, central nervous system stroke, enology (viticulture and viniculture)

Education and Training:
• Undergraduate Degree; Biochemistry, Stanford University
• Medical School: Stanford University School of Medicine, California
• Internship: Children’s Hospital, San Francisco, California - Medicine
• Residency: Massachusetts General Hospital Harvard Medical School, Boston - Radiology
• Fellowship: Massachusetts General Hospital Harvard Medical School, Boston - Neuroradiology
• Diplomat, National Board of Medical Examiners (1984)
• Diplomat, American Board of Radiology (1987)
• American Society of Neuroradiology, Junior Member (1988)
• American Society of Neuroradiology, Senior Member (1989)
• California State Medical Licensure (1989-Present)
• United States Drug Enforcement Licensure (1989-Present)
• X-Ray Supervisor and Operator License (1989)
• Re-certification (CAQ) in Neuroradiology, American Board of Radiology (2008)
• Certified Specialist in Wine (CSW), Certified Sommelier (Court of Master Sommeliers), Wine & Spirits Education Trust (WSET) Diploma Candidate, Italian Wine Scholar (IWS), French Wine Scholar (FWS), California Wine Appellation Specialist (CWAS)


Certified Sommelier, WSET Diploma Candidate, French Wine Scholar, Italian Wine Scholar, CSW, 95-2000 - Enology, San Francisco Wine School, Court of Master Sommeliers, Napa Valley College
Residency/Fellowship, 1989 - Neuroradiology, Harvard Medical School
M.D., 1983 - School of Medicine, Stanford Medical School
BS, - Biochemistry, Stanford University
Faculty, - Neuroradiology, University of California, San Francisco

Honors and Awards

Leadership Recognition Award, Radiology Society of North America, 2011
Mayoral Delegate for City of San Francisco for 30th Anniversary, Shanghai-SF Sister City Relationship, 2010
RSNA Leadership Recognition Award, Radiological Society of North America, 2005-2009
Lecture Grant for Traumatic Brain Injury, National Institute for Neurologic Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), 2004
RSNA Leadership Recognition Award, Radiological Society of North America, 2004
RSNA Leadership Recognition Award, Radiological Society of North America, 2003
Lecture Grant for Traumatic Brain Injury, National Institute for Neurologic Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), 2002
Annual Patrick Dolan Lecturer, Indiana University, 2000
Annual Juan M. Taveras Lecturer, Harvard Medical School, 1998
Department Achievement Award in Teaching, San Francisco General Hospital, 1992
Outstanding Achievement in Teaching, University of California, San Francisco Department of Radiology, 1991


Gress DR, Wintermark M, Gean AD. A case of Terson syndrome and its mechanism of bleeding. J Neuroradiol. 2013 Oct; 40(4):312-4.
Venkatasubramanian C, Kleinman JT, Fischbein NJ, Olivot JM, Gean AD, Eyngorn I, Snider RW, Mlynash M, Wijman CA. Natural history and prognostic value of corticospinal tract Wallerian degeneration in intracerebral hemorrhage. J Am Heart Assoc. 2013 Aug 02; 2(4):e000090.
Cheng JS, Richardson RM, Gean AD, Stiver SI. Delayed acute spinal cord injury following intracranial gunshot trauma: case report. J Neurosurg. 2012 Apr; 116(4):921-5.
Flint AC, Gean AD, Manley GT, Rao VA, Sheridan WF, von Koch CS. Temporizing treatment of hyperacute subdural hemorrhage by subdural evacuation port system placement. J Neurosurg. 2011 Oct; 115(4):844-8.
Nakagawa A, Manley GT, Gean AD, Ohtani K, Armonda R, Tsukamoto A, Yamamoto H, Takayama K, Tominaga T. Mechanisms of primary blast-induced traumatic brain injury: insights from shock-wave research. J Neurotrauma. 2011 Jun; 28(6):1101-19.
Kim JJ, Gean AD. Imaging for the diagnosis and management of traumatic brain injury. Neurotherapeutics. 2011 Jan; 8(1):39-53.
Duhaime AC, Gean AD, Haacke EM, Hicks R, Wintermark M, Mukherjee P, Brody D, Latour L, Riedy G, Common Data Elements Neuroimaging Working Group Members, Pediatric Working Group Members. Common data elements in radiologic imaging of traumatic brain injury. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2010 Nov; 91(11):1661-6.
Gean AD, Fischbein NJ. Head trauma. Neuroimaging Clin N Am. 2010 Nov; 20(4):527-56.
Voytek B, Secundo L, Bidet-Caulet A, Scabini D, Stiver SI, Gean AD, Manley GT, Knight RT. Hemicraniectomy: a new model for human electrophysiology with high spatio-temporal resolution. J Cogn Neurosci. 2010 Nov; 22(11):2491-502.
Haacke EM, Duhaime AC, Gean AD, Riedy G, Wintermark M, Mukherjee P, Brody DL, DeGraba T, Duncan TD, Elovic E, Hurley R, Latour L, Smirniotopoulos JG, Smith DH. Common data elements in radiologic imaging of traumatic brain injury. J Magn Reson Imaging. 2010 Sep; 32(3):516-43.
Cantu RC, Gean AD. Second-impact syndrome and a small subdural hematoma: an uncommon catastrophic result of repetitive head injury with a characteristic imaging appearance. J Neurotrauma. 2010 Sep; 27(9):1557-64.
Gean AD, Fischbein NJ, Purcell DD, Aiken AH, Manley GT, Stiver SI. Benign anterior temporal epidural hematoma: indolent lesion with a characteristic CT imaging appearance after blunt head trauma. Radiology. 2010 Oct; 257(1):212-8.
Aiken AH, Gean AD. Imaging of head trauma. Semin Roentgenol. 2010 Apr; 45(2):63-79.
Chun KA, Manley GT, Stiver SI, Aiken AH, Phan N, Wang V, Meeker M, Cheng SC, Gean AD, Wintermark M. Interobserver variability in the assessment of CT imaging features of traumatic brain injury. J Neurotrauma. 2010 Feb; 27(2):325-30.
Stiver SI, Gean AD, Manley GT. Survival with good outcome after cerebral herniation and Duret hemorrhage caused by traumatic brain injury. J Neurosurg. 2009 Jun; 110(6):1242-6.
Jagoda AS, Bazarian JJ, Bruns JJ, Cantrill SV, Gean AD, Howard PK, Ghajar J, Riggio S, Wright DW, Wears RL, Bakshy A, Burgess P, Wald MM, Whitson RR. Clinical policy: neuroimaging and decisionmaking in adult mild traumatic brain injury in the acute setting. J Emerg Nurs. 2009 Apr; 35(2):e5-40.
Le TH, Gean AD. Neuroimaging of traumatic brain injury. Mt Sinai J Med. 2009 Apr; 76(2):145-62.
Jagoda AS, Bazarian JJ, Bruns JJ, Cantrill SV, Gean AD, Howard PK, Ghajar J, Riggio S, Wright DW, Wears RL, Bakshy A, Burgess P, Wald MM, Whitson RR, American College of Emergency Physicians, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Clinical policy: neuroimaging and decisionmaking in adult mild traumatic brain injury in the acute setting. Ann Emerg Med. 2008 Dec; 52(6):714-48.
Yuh EL, Gean AD, Manley GT, Callen AL, Wintermark M. Computer-aided assessment of head computed tomography (CT) studies in patients with suspected traumatic brain injury. J Neurotrauma. 2008 Oct; 25(10):1163-72.
Lee H, Wintermark M, Gean AD, Ghajar J, Manley GT, Mukherjee P. Focal lesions in acute mild traumatic brain injury and neurocognitive outcome: CT versus 3T MRI. J Neurotrauma. 2008 Sep; 25(9):1049-56.
Flint AC, Manley GT, Gean AD, Hemphill JC, Rosenthal G. Post-operative expansion of hemorrhagic contusions after unilateral decompressive hemicraniectomy in severe traumatic brain injury. J Neurotrauma. 2008 May; 25(5):503-12.
Le TH, Gean AD. Imaging of head trauma. Semin Roentgenol. 2006 Jul; 41(3):177-89.
Susac JO, Murtagh FR, Egan RA, Berger JR, Bakshi R, Lincoff N, Gean AD, Galetta SL, Fox RJ, Costello FE, Lee AG, Clark J, Layzer RB, Daroff RB. MRI findings in Susac's syndrome. Neurology. 2003 Dec 23; 61(12):1783-7.
Gotway MB, Marder SR, Hanks DK, Leung JW, Dawn SK, Gean AD, Reddy GP, Araoz PA, Webb WR. Thoracic complications of illicit drug use: an organ system approach. Radiographics. 2002 Oct; 22 Spec No:S119-35.
Tsao JW, Gean AD, Glenn OA, Bonovich DC. Hyperdense MCA resolved after tPA. Neurology. 2002 May 28; 58(10):1512.
Mann FA, Gean AD, Kazerooni EA, Rogers LF. 1998 plenary session: Imaging symposium. An overview of acute radiology. Radiographics. 1999 Sep-Oct; 19(5):1319-22.
Ramsey RG, Gean AD. Neuroimaging of AIDS. I. Central nervous system toxoplasmosis. Neuroimaging Clin N Am. 1997 May; 7(2):171-86.
Murray JG, Gean AD, Evans SJ. Imaging of acute head injury. Semin Ultrasound CT MR. 1996 Jun; 17(3):185-205.
Murray JG, Gean AD, Barr RM. Intraocular silicone oil for retinal detachment in AIDS: CT and MR appearances. Clin Radiol. 1996 Jun; 51(6):415-7.
Gean AD, Kates RS, Lee S. Neuroimaging in head injury. New Horiz. 1995 Aug; 3(3):549-61.
Eide FF, Gean AD, So YT. Clinical and radiographic findings in disseminated tuberculosis of the brain. Neurology. 1993 Jul; 43(7):1427-9.
Gean AD, Pile-Spellman J, Heros RC. A pneumatized anterior clinoid mimicking an aneurysm on MR imaging. Report of two cases. J Neurosurg. 1989 Jul; 71(1):128-32.
Gean AD, DeLuca SA. Acute gastric volvulus. Am Fam Physician. 1986 Sep; 34(3):99-100.
Marton KI, Gean AD. The spinal tap: a new look at an old test. Ann Intern Med. 1986 Jun; 104(6):840-8.