Michael Froehler, M.D., Ph.D.

Michael Froehler, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Neurology

Clinical Interest

Dr. Froehler began his medical training in the combined MD-PhD program at the University of Rochester, where his graduate work focused on neurophysiology. After completion of medical school, he went to Johns Hopkins for residency training in neurology after an internship in internal medicine. During his time at Hopkins, he focused on neurocritical care. He then went to the renowned stroke center at UCLA for consecutive fellowships in vascular neurology and interventional neuroradiology. He performed clinical stroke research with Dr. Jeffrey Saver before joining the UCLA neuro interventional program which, was one of the founding centers of the field and is the home of several key inventions – including aneurysm coils (the Guiglielmi detachable coil) and stroke thrombectomy devices (Merci, Solitaire).

After completion of his training, Dr. Froehler joined the faculty at the University of Iowa. Working alongside distinguished stroke expert Dr. Harold Adams, Froehler performed neuro interventional procedures and attended on the vascular neurology service, and described a new technique for cerebral venous thrombectomy.

Soon, Dr. Froehler was recruited to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where he helped to establish the new Cerebrovascular Program. This unique, multidisciplinary and highly collaborative program has brought together endovascular neurosurgery, interventional neuroradiology, and interventional neurology to create a comprehensive clinical service that has grown substantially since its inception. Froehler serves as the Director of the Cerebrovascular Program, which now includes three full-time faculty members and three nurse practitioners, and utilizes two specialized angiography operating rooms and works closely with the neuro critical care service. The Vanderbilt Cerebrovascular Program now serves as a model of its kind for other institutions around the country.

In addition to his clinical service, Dr. Froehler cofounded and currently directs the Cerebrovascular Research Program at Vanderbilt. He has served as the principle investigator for at least 14 clinical studies, and currently serves as the national PI for a large endovascular stroke study. He is also a RCC PI in the NIH StrokeNet, and serves on its executive committee.

Dr. Froehler’s clinical research now focuses on the systems of care that support acute stroke treatment. With the widespread application of endovascular treatment for stroke, it is clear that faster treatment leads to better outcomes. Froehler recently analyzed the delays associated with transferring from one hospital to another prior to endovascular stroke treatment, and found that transfer delays treatment by nearly 2 hours and is associated with a 38 to 47% reduction in good neurologic outcomes.

Selected Publications