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Timothy L. Keenen, MD

Portland Orthopedic Spine Surgeon
Clinical Associate Professor, OHSU Orthopedics
Medical Director, Legacy Meridian Park Spine Center
Timothy L. Keenen, MD Timothy L. Keenen, MD

Dr. Keenen is a board certified and fellowship trained orthopedic spine surgeon in Portland, OR treating neck and low back surgical conditions. Dr. Keenen’s office, Pacific Spine Specialists, is a top spine surgeon practice located in the Portland Oregon area. Dr. Keenen is highly experienced with minimally invasive spine procedures, motion preservation surgeries (cervical and lumbar artificial discs), micro-discectomy, cervical fusion, and lumbar fusion. After 20 years’ experience as a deformity surgeon, performing thousands of simple to highly complex spine surgeries, along with teaching 8 years on the faculty at Oregon Health Sciences University, he is committed to ensuring patients receive the proper diagnosis and the most effective surgery to achieve optimal function and pain relief.

He performs spine surgery at Providence and Legacy Hospitals, and the South Portland Outpatient Surgical Center.  Dr. Keenen is proud to have successfully implemented the first JCAH-certified spine center in Oregon.

After studying with national experts, the advanced technique he now uses and teaches brings maximal protection and preservation of the essential supporting multifidus muscle of the lumbar spine. Applying these innovative techniques that have advanced MIS, and using state-of-the-art spine instrumentation, he is now able to perform these surgeries through one small incision with minimal soft tissue injury. As a result, patients are experiencing success with shorter and easier recovery times after fusions, discectomies, or decompressions.

Dr. Keenen is a national level instructor for the next generation state of the art minimally invasive   IMERGENT decompression fusion surgical procedure (DePuy Synthes).

In 2014, while in Portland, Cirque de Solei chose Dr. Keenen as their operating spine surgeon for their injured performers.

Dr. Keenen is devoted to his two children. He enjoys playing his classical guitar, and is a regular sponsor of the Portland Classical  Guitar society. He is an avid reader with a love for historical fiction.


  • Bachelor Science: Washington University, St. Louis, MO. Phi Beta Kappa. Magna cum Laude
  • Medical Degree: St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis MO
  • Surgical Internship: U.S. Naval Medical Center, Oakland, CA
  • Orthopaedic Surgery Residency: U.S. Naval Medical Center, Oakland, CA
  • Spine Fellowship: University of California, Davis (Daniel Benson, M.D.)


  • Board Certified, American Board of Orthopedic Surgery (ABOS)
  •  Oregon License, Oregon Board of Medical Examiners



  •   Clinical Associate Professor , Department of Orthopedics: Oregon Health Sciences University, Portland, OR
  •    Consultant, Portland Shriners Hospital


  • Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center
  • Portland Shriners Hospital
  • Providence Portland Medical Center
  • Providence Willamette Falls Hospital
  • Medical Director: Legacy Meridian Park Spine Center (JCAH certified)


  • Chairman, Surgery Department (2002-2006)   Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center
  • Asst Chairman,  Surgery Department (2001-2002)  Legacy Meridian Park
  • Vice Chairman,  Medical Advisory Committee (2004-present) Oregon Workers Compensation
  • President  (2003-2004)Oregon Association of Orthopedic Surgeons
  • Secretary / Treasurer  (2004-2011) Oregon Association of Orthopedic Surgeons
  • Vice President  (2011-2013)  Oregon Association of Orthopedic Surgeons
  • President  (2013-2015)   Oregon Association of Orthopedic Surgeons

Clinical Practice

  • General Orthopedics, US Navy Okinawa Japan and Long Beach, CA
  • Spine Fellowship
  • Spine Specialist, Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon   OHSU   Portland, OR
  • Spine Specialist, Private Practice   Tualatin, OR

Professional Societies

  • Oregon Medical Association
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • Scoliosis Research Society
  • North American Spine Society

Oregon Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons

  • Board of Counselors, Member-at-Large
  • (2003-2004) President
  • (2004-2011)  Secretary / Treasurer
  • (2011-2013)  Vice President (President Elect)
  • (2013-2015)   President

Medical School Activities

Teaching Awards

  •  David W.E. Baird Award For Teaching Excellence
  •  Principles of Clinical Medicine, Small Group Facilitator Teaching Award
  • Department of Emergency Medicine Award for Teaching Excellence
  •  Pricinples of Clinical Medicine, Teaching Excellence  MS 2
  •  OHSU School of Medicine Teaching Award

Anatomy & Imaging Course, Assistant Coordinator (1990-1996)

Medical School Curriculum Task Force (1990-1992)

Musculoskeletal Task Force Committee

Principles of Clinical Medicine Steering Committee

Principles of Clinical Medicine Course (1989-1998)

  • Physical Examination Subcommittee
  • First Year Student Small Group Facilitator
  • Second Year Student Small Group Facilitator
  • GOSCE Examiner
  • First Year Student Physical Exam Tutor
  • First Year Medical Student Preceptor

Faculty Development Advisory Committee  (1990-1994)

Co-Director CON 626 (MS II Orthopedic Basic Science Course) (1994-1995)

Department of Orthopedics

  • Resident Selection Coordinator  (1989-1995)
  • Medical Student Education Coordinator (1989-1996)

Military Service

Commander, USNR

  • U.S. Navy Health Professions Scholarship Student
  • U.S. Navy Active Duty – Commander, Medical Corps
  • U.S. Naval Regional Medical Center, Oakland, CA
  • U.S. Naval Hospital, Department of Orthopaedics, Okinawa, Japan
  • U.S. Naval Hospital, Department of Orthopaedics, Long Beach, California

Publications by Dr. Keenen

1.  Keenen, T.L. & Beals, R.K. Magnetic Resonance Imaging in the Evaluation of Children’s Spine  Disorders.  Western J. of Med. 150(6):683-684, June 1989.

2.  Keenen, T.L., Antony, J. & Benson, D.R.  Dural Tears Associated with Lumbar Burst Fractures. J. of Orthop. Trauma 4:243-245, 1990.

3.  Keenen, T.L., Antony, J. & Benson, D.R.  Non-contiguous Spinal Fractures. J. of Trauma 30: 489-491, April 1990.

4.  Schmidt, A.H., Keenen, T.L., Tank, E.S., Bird, C.B., Beals, R.K.  Pelvic Osteotomy During Reconstruction of the Exstrophic Bladder: Comparison of Posterior Iliotomy With Anterior Pubic Ramotomy. J. of Ped. Orthop. 13:214-219, 1993.

5.  Frank, E.H. & Keenen, T.L. A Technique for Cervical Laminoplasty Using Miniplates.  Brit. J. Neurosurgery, 8(2): 197-199, 1993.

6.  Elliot, D.L, Fields, S.A., Keenen, T.L., Jaffe, A.C., Toffler, W.L.: Use of a GOSCE (Group Objective  Structured Examination with First-Year Medical Students) American Medicine 69(12):990-992,December, 1994.

7.  Keenen, T.L., Buehler, K., & Campbell, J.R.  Solitary Lymphangioma of the Spine:  A Case Report. Spine 20:102-105, January, 1995.

8.  Frank, E.H., Pennington, S.E., & Keenen, T.L. C5-6 Cervical Dislocation Resulting from Improper Seatbelt Use: A Case Report. Acad. Emerg. Med.2:1995.

9.  Burchiel, K.J., Frank, E.H., & Keenen, T.L.:  A Plea For Prospective Studies on Diskography. APS Journal 3(3), 1994.

10. Fields, S.A., Toffler, W.L., Elliot, D.L., Garland, M.J., Atkinson, R.M., Keenen, T.L., Jaffe, A.C.: Principles of Clinical Medicine: An Interdisciplinary Integrated Two-Year Longitudinal Course. Medical Education 29:53-57, 1995.