David Brandes, MD, MS

Nov 29, 2019

David Brandes, MD, MS, majored in chemistry in college in Illinois, then went on to study biochemistry in graduate school at UCLA. Chemistry of the brain specifically fascinated him, so when his girlfriend’s father, a physician, urged him to enroll in medical school, Dr. Brandes didn’t take much convincing.

Now Dr. Brandes is a multiple sclerosis specialist, having spent more than four decades in research and private practice in both California and Tennessee. During his early years, he spent time conducting research in MS spinal fluid and helping develop the spinal fluid measurement of IgG synthesis. He completed his neurology residency and researched treatments for MS post-residency. “We didn’t make much progress in those years,” Dr. Brandes recalled, “so I decided to go into neurology private practice in the Los Angeles area with one of my co-residents.”

He never lost his love for studying MS, however. After years in practice, Dr. Brandes accumulated many patients with MS and established the first private MS center in the United States outside of a university or hospital setting while in Los Angeles. Since then, he has continued to treat patients with MS and conduct research in the field. About 11 years ago, at the request of his lovely wife, he moved to Knoxville, Tennessee, where he now has a private MS Center.

When not treating patients, Dr. Brandes enjoys traveling throughout the United States giving lectures about MS. But time on the road never beats quality hours at home with his lovely wife. A little-known fact about Dr. Brandes is his interest in music, specifically from artists including Sarah Brightman, Linda Ronstadt, Blondie and Taylor Swift (whom he jokingly calls his “girlfriends”).

To stay active, Dr. Brandes ventures out west to ski and snowboard in the winter. He cites the wonderful, well-known neurological experts at the SCNS annual meeting as his draw to the meeting every year. And even though the cold doesn’t really bother him, Dr. Brandes looks forward to the warm Florida weather too.