Megan H. Cortazzo, MD
Assistant Professor

Megan Cortazzo, MD, joined the department in 2007 after completing a fellowship in Pain Medicine. In 2001, she received her Doctorate in Medicine from the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine. She completed her residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Pittsburgh in 2005. As a resident, she received the Best Resident Research Paper Award in 2004.

Dr. Cortazzo currently serves as the Medical Director of Clinical Documentation Improvement as well as the Medical Director for Health Information Management for UPMC. Prior to that role, she served as Vice Clinical Chair of outpatient services where she helped expand their spine intervention and pain program and was involved in the design of the UPMC Spine Center. She has been involved with initiatives at UPMC regarding the improvement of care for the patient who suffers from chronic pain. She involved her department as one of the first at UPMC to use electronic tablets for the collection of patient reported outcomes which interfaces with the electronic medical record.

Specialized Areas of Interest
Clinical Documentation Integrity, Medical coding, Health Information Management, IT solutions to improve physician efficiency and patient reported outcomes.


Board Certifications
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Pain Medicine

Education & Training
BS, Neuroscience, Magna cum Laude, University of Pittsburgh, 1997
MD, University of Pittsburgh, School of Medicine, 2001
PM&R Residency, UPMC, 2005
Pain Medicine Fellowship, University of California-Davis, 2007

Honors and Awards
UPMC Award for Commitment and Excellence in Service, 2017
Best Doctor, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Pittsburgh Magazine, 2013-2018
Best Resident Research Paper Research Day, Dept. PM&R, 2004

Selected Publications
The Identification of Biomarkers That Are Predictive of Response to Interventional Spinal Procedures for Axial Low Back Pain: A Pilot Study. Jayabalan, P, Tremont, K, Coelho JP, Huang, W, Cortazzo, MH, Vo, NV, Kang, JD, Sowa, GA. American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Annual Meeting, National Harbor, MD, October 2013

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome as a Result of Stingray Envenomation: A Case Report. Helm, ER and Cortazzo, MH. PM&R Vol. 3, Issue 10, Supplement 1, Page S287, September 2011

Zoster sine herpete treated with radiofrequency neurotomy. Leishear, K and Cortazzo, MH. PM&R Vol.3, Issue 10, Supplement 1, PageS294-S295. September 2011

Chimes, GP, Bernstein, CD, Cortazzo, MH, Huber, LM, Mirror Therapy for Persistent Upper Limb Following Spinal Cord Tumor Resection: A Case Report. American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Vol. 1, S220

Acute Inpatient Rehabilitation of Fifty-five Patients after Liver Transplantation. Cortazzo, MH, Helkowski, W, Pippin, B, Bonninger, ML, Zafonte, R. American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Vol. 84, No. 11

Nerve Growth Factor-Mediated Protection of Neural Crests Cells from Antimitotic Agent-Induced Apoptosis: The Role of the Low-Affinity NGF Receptor. Cortazzo, MH, et al. The Journal of Neuroscience 16 (12): 3895-3899

Potentiation of Enediyne-induced Apoptosis and Differentiation By Bc1-2. Cortazzo, MH and Schor, NF. Cancer Research 56, 1199-1203

NGF-Mediated Resistance of Neuroblastoma to Chemotherapeutic-induced Apoptosis: The role of the low affinity receptor. Cortazzo MH, Nylander KD, Schor NF. Ann Neurol 38:517