Jerry Blaivas

Jerry Blaivas

Jerry G. Blaivas (born in Brooklyn, NY) is a board-certified American urologist, researcher, editor, and author, and he serves as the director of the Institute for Bladder and Prostate Research in New York City.



Blaivas is a Clinical Professor of Urology at Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University and an Adjunct Professor of Urology at the State University of New York - Downstate Medical School. He is an Attending Surgeon at New York Presbyterian Hospital[1] and Lenox Hill Hospital[2]. Prior faculty appointments include Professor of Clinical Urology, Vice-Chairman, and Director of Neurourology at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and Associate Professor of Urology at Tufts University School of Medicine.

Blaivas is a world-renowned surgeon and clinician, specializing in disorders of the lower urinary tract and pelvic floor in both men and women. He pioneered many of the current diagnostic and surgical procedures for stress incontinence, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), voiding dysfunction, pelvic organ prolapse, urinary fistulas, urethral diverticulum, overactive bladder, and neurogenic bladder. He has particular expertise in complex urologic problems, including complications of synthetic mesh incontinence and prolapsed repairs, failed incontinence and prolapse surgery, complications of radiation and prostate surgery, and recurrent vesicovaginal fistulas. In addition, he was instrumental in the design and implementation of urodynamic techniques and has personally performed over 20,000 videourodynamic studies.

Blaivas is the primary or senior author of over 400 peer-reviewed scientific articles, book chapters, and reviews, and he has edited and authored 11 books. He has been listed as one of New York Magazine’s Best Doctors, and he has been one of Castle Connolly’s "America’s Top Doctors" and "Top Doctors: New York Metro Area" every year since the publication's inception in 1992.[3]

Education and Training

Blaivas is a graduate of Lawrence High School in New York (1960) and received a bachelor's degree in English Literature from Tufts University (1964). He was awarded a medical degree from the Tufts University School of Medicine in 1968 and completed his urology residency at the Tufts New England Medical Center in 1976.

Professional Experience

After completing his residency, Blaivas joined the Center's faculty and was appointed Director of the Urodynamic Laboratory. He became an Associate Professor of Urology in 1979 and started one of the first post-graduate fellowship programs in what is now known as pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery. In 1981, he joined the faculty of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, where he has held the positions of Professor of Clinical Urology, Director of Neurourology, Fellowship Director, and Vice-Chairman of the Department of Urology. He has also been a Clinical Professor of Urology at Weil-Cornell Medical College since 1993 and an Adjunct Professor of Urology at SUNY-Downstate Medical Center since 2010.


Blaivas' research interests relate to the lower urinary tract in men and women and pelvic reconstruction in women. In men, his research activities include benign prostatic hypertrophy and bladder outlet obstruction, overactive bladder, and complications of prostate cancer treatment. In women, research activities include overactive bladder, pelvic organ prolapse, bladder outlet obstruction, urethral diverticula, vesicovaginal and urethrovaginal fistulas, and complications of incontinence and reconstructive surgery.

In 1998, Blaivas founded the not-for-profit Institute for Bladder and Prostate Research and is currently its Director.

Honors, Awards, and Professional Society Memberships

  • Victor A. Politano Award, American Urological Association, 2009
  • Jerry G. Blaivas Honorary Lectureship, Society of Urodynamics and Female Urology, established in 2007
  • Continence Care Champion, National Association for Continence, 2005
  • Pfizer-American Urological Association Visiting Professor Award, 2004
  • Best Clinical Study for the Year 2000, Society for Urodynamics and Female Urology, 2000
  • Lifetime Achievement Award, Society for Urodynamics and Female Urology, 1999
  • Brantley Scott, M.D., Award, American Foundation for Urologic Disease, 1999
  • J. Marion Sims Award, American Uro-Gynecologic Society, 1993
  • Best Doctors in America, 1992-2011
  • Best Doctors in New York, 1992-2011
  • Zimskind/Kendall Award, Urodynamic Society, 1985
  • First Prize for Research, Annual Meeting of the International Continence Society, Leiden, 1982
  • Winner, Team Debate, Joint Meeting of the International Continence Society and the Urodynamic Society, Los Angeles, 1980
  • Commendations Medal United States Army, 1973
  • Sword and Shield Honor Society, Tufts College, 1965

Professional Societies

  • American Association of Genitourinary Surgeons
  • American Board of Urology
  • American College of Surgeons
  • American Urogynecologic Society
  • American Urologic Society, New York Section
  • American Urological Association
  • Chilean Urologic Society, Honorary Member
  • International Continence Society
  • Massachusetts Medical Society (1973-1981)
  • National Board of Medical Examiners
  • New York Academy of Medicine
  • Société Internationale d'urologie
  • Society for Urodynamics and Female Urology
  • Society of Pelvic Surgeons
  • Society of University Urologists

Publications and Editorial Responsibilities

Blaivas is the founder of Neurourology & Urodynamics and was editor-in-chief from 1982-2006. Other editorial responsibilities have included serving as a board member of the International Journal of Urogynecology and Contemporary Urology and peer reviewer for the Journal of Urology, Urology, The New England Journal of Medicine, British Journal of Urology, Annals of Neurology, and the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Major Contributions


Blaivas is one of the original pioneers in the development of urodynamics and videourodynamics.

  • Design of Equipment: After completing his residency, Blaivas was awarded a grant from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to study the national history of voiding disturbances in multiple diagnosis.[4][5] This research allowed Blaivas to develop one of the first videourodynamic units in the world, introducing a new method of simultaneously recording and displaying radiological images and urodynamic tracings.[6] Prior to this, videourodynamics was commonly performed by recording physiological parameters on a strip chart recorder and X-rays on a fluorescent screen. It was therefore incumbent upon the physician to interpret the interrelationship of physiological and anatomical events by visualizing both images simultaneously on their respective video screens and noting the sequence of events.
  • Clinical Applications: When first introduced, urodynamics was mostly used as a method of classifying neurogenic bladder (the Lapides classification) among patients with spinal cord injury. Blavais' research[7][8] pioneered use of urodynamics to diagnose subtle neurological disorders amongst patients without known neurological conditions. He was later able to demonstrate the utility of urodynamics in treating patients with neurological diseases other than spinal cord injury (such as multiple sclerosis[9], Parkinson’s disease, diabetes[10], and Shy–Drager Syndrome[11]) for diagnosing incontinence in men and women, urethral obstruction, and neurogenic bladder[12].

Classification of Lower Urinary Tract Disorders

Over the course of his career, Blaivas has been instrumental in devising classification systems for urinary incontinence[13], stress incontinence[14], detrusor-external sphincter dyssynergia[15], overactive bladder[16], urinary urgency[17], nocturia[18], and bladder outlet obstruction in women[19]. Blaivas documented a differential diagnosis that included prostatic obstruction, impaired detrusor contractility (weak bladder) detrusor overactivity (bladder spasms) and sensory urgency (abnormal sensations)[20][21][22][23][24]. Prior to the publication of his first paper on this issue in 1988, the cause of lower urinary tract symptoms was thought to be prostatic obstruction.

Autologous Rectus Fascial Pubovaginal Sling

Blaivas modified the autologous rectus fascial pubovaginal sling for treating sphincteric incontinence in women[25], first introduced by Edward J. McGuire, and originated the concept of sling surgery as the gold standard for sphincter incontinence[26].

Urethral Reconstruction in Women

Blaivas pioneered the techniques for urethral reconstruction in women.[27][28][29]

Overactive Bladder

Blaivas introduced the concept that overactive bladder should be considered a symptom complex with a differential diagnosis, rather than a syndrome[30] and investigated the characteristics of urinary urgency[31][32][33].


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  2. ^
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  4. ^ Grant # RG1108-A-1
  5. ^ Grant # RT1108-B-2
  6. ^ Blaivas JG, Fisher DM. Combined Radiographic and Urodynamic Monitoring: Advances in Technique. J Urol 125:693-4,1981
  7. ^ Blaivas JG, Labib KB, Bauer SB, Retik AB. A New Approach to Electromyography of the External Urethral Sphincter. J Urol 117:773-7,1977
  8. ^ Blaivas JG, Labib KB, Scott RM. Urodynamic Evaluation as neurologic test of Sacral Cord Function. Urology 9:682,1979
  9. ^ Blaivas JG, Bhimani G, Labib KB. Vesicourethral Dysfunction in Multiple Sclerosis. J Urol 122:342-7,1979
  10. ^ Norlen LJ, Blaivas JG, Gable H. Cystopathy in Patients With Severe Diabetic Nephropathy. Diabetic Nephropathy,1983
  11. ^ Salinas J, Berger Y, De La Rocha RE, Blaivas JG. Urologic Evaluation in the Shy- Drager Syndrome. J Urol 135:741-3,1986.
  12. ^ Blaivas JG. The Neurophysiology of Micturition. J Urol 127:958-3,1982.
  13. ^ Blaivas JG, Appell RA, Fantl JA, Leach G, McGuire EJ, Resnick NM, Raz S, Wein AJ. Definition and Classification of Urinary Incontinence: Recommendations of the Urodynamic Society. Neurourol Urodyn 16:149-1,1997
  14. ^ Blaivas JG, Olsson CA. Stress Incontinence: Classification and Surgical Approach. J Urol 139:727-1,1988
  15. ^ Blaivas JG, Sinha HPM, Zayed AAH, Labib KB. Detrusor External Sphincter Dyssynergia: A detailed EMG study. J Urol 125:545-8,1981
  16. ^ Flisser AJ, Walmsley K, Blaivas JG. Urodynamic Classification of Patients with Symptoms of Overactive Bladder. J Urol 169(2):529-534,2003
  17. ^ Blaivas JG, Panagopoulos G, Weiss JP, Somaroo C. Two types of urgency. Neurourol Urodyn. 2009;28(3):188-900
  18. ^ Weiss JP, Blaivas JG, Stember DS, Brooks, MM, Nocturia in Adults: Etiology and Classification. Neurourol Urodyn 17:467-2,1998
  19. ^ Blaivas JG, Groutz A. Bladder outlet obstruction nomogram for women with lower urinary tract symptomatology. Neuorourol Urodyn 19:553-4, 2000
  20. ^ Blaivas JG. Pathophysiology and Differential Diagnosis of Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy. Urology 32:supp5-11,1988
  21. ^ Hyman MJ, Groutz A, Blaivas JG. Detrusor Instability in Men: Correlation of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms with Urodynamic Findings. J Urol 166:550-3, 2001
  22. ^ Fusco F, Groutz A, Blaivas JG, Chaikin DC, Weiss JP. Videourodynamic Studies in Men with Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms: A Comparison of Community Based Versus Referral Urological Practices. J Urol 166:910-3, 2001
  23. ^ Purohit RS, Blaivas JG, Saleem KL, Sandhu J, Weiss JP, Reddy B, Sidhu RK. The pathophysiology of large capacity bladder. J Urol. 2008 Mar;179(3):1006-11
  24. ^ Blaivas JG, Marks BK, Weiss JP, Panagopoulos G, Somaroo C. Differential diagnosis of overactive bladder in men. J Urol. 2009 Dec;182(6):2814-7
  25. ^ Blaivas JG, Jacobs BZ. Pubovaginal Sling for the Treatment of Complicated Stress Incontinence. J Urol 145:1214-8,1991
  26. ^ Chaikin DC, Rosenthal J, Blaivas JG, Pubovaginal Fascial Sling for All Types of Stress Urinary Incontinence: Long-term Analysis. J Urol 160: 1312-6,1998
  27. ^ Blaivas JG. Vaginal Flap Urethral Reconstruction: An Alternative to Bladder Flap Neourethra. J Urol 141:542-5,1989
  28. ^ Blaivas JG, Heritz DM.Vaginal Flap Reconstruction of the Urethra and Vesical Neck in Women: A Report of 49 Cases. J Urol 155:1014-7,1996
  29. ^ Flisser AJ and Blaivas JG. Outcome of Urethral Reconstructive Surgery in a Series of 74 Women. J. Urol 169(6): 2246-2249, 2003
  30. ^ Blaivas JG. Overactive bladder: symptom or syndrome? BJU International. 92(6):521-2, 2003; Blaivas JG, Panagopoulos G, Weiss JP, Somaroo C. Validation of the overactive bladder symptom score. J Urol. 2007 Aug;178(2):543-7)
  31. ^ Blaivas JG. Overactive bladder and the definition of urgency. Neurourol Urodyn. 2007;26(6):757-8
  32. ^ Blaivas JG, Panagopoulos G, Weiss JP, Somaroo C, Chaikin DC. The urgency perception score: validation and test-retest. J Urol. 2007 Jan;177(1):199-202
  33. ^ Blaivas JG, Panagopoulos G, Weiss JP, Somaroo C. Two types of urgency. Neurourol Urodyn. 2009;28(3):188-90)

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