Our Team of providers at Tampa Bay Spine and Injury

If you are in need of treatment, Tampa Bay Spine & Injury is the best place you can go for the treatment and care. Our experienced doctors and specialists provide Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, physical therapy, and Chiropractic for individual treatment plans that work.

Robert J Kowalski, Jr., M.D., M.S. P. E.

Dr. Kowalski was born in Meadowbrook, PA and graduated with distinction from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. He completed a Master’s Degree in Washington, DC and after five years of service in the Navy’s Civil engineering Corps, he was awarded a Scholarship to attend the University of South Florida College of Medicine. Graduating with honors, he completed residency in neurological surgery at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.

Dr. Kowalski utilized his engineering background and distinguished himself by conducting extensive research on spinal biomechanics. He received a prestigious grant from the Neurosurgery Research and Education Foundation and following his residency, he also completed a fellowship in complex spinal surgery working with Neurosurgery and Orthopedic Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Kowalski served in the US Air Force for four years serving as the sole neurosurgeon in Afghanistan.

Dr Kowalski’s practice encompasses all aspects of cranial and spinal surgery with particular emphasis on motion preservation technologies, minimally invasive surgery techniques and spinal instrumentation.

Arpit Patel, D.O.

Dr. Patel graduated with academic honors from Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine and then continued training in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation in Long Island, New York. He was chosen to serve as Chief Resident by his peers and the clinical team.  He continued his pain fellowship at University of South Florida (USF) and was awarded, “Fellow of the Year”.

 Dr. Patel focuses on a multidisciplinary approach to treating painful conditions. This includes treatment of cancer, neurological and musculoskeletal pain using medications, tailored physical therapy prescriptions, fluoroscopically/ultrasound/CT guided interventional pain and spine procedures. His procedures include implantable spinal cord stimulators, radiofrequency ablation, intrathecal drug delivery systems, kyphoplasty, minimally invasive spine procedures and complex headache/facial pain management.

 Dr. Patel currently serves as Assistant Clinical Professor for the Pain Medicine fellowship at the University of South Florida and Assistant Professor for the Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the University of Central Florida.  He continues to educate medical students, residents and fellows throughout the area. Dr. Patel has had the distinct honor to publish and present his research and clinical case studies at various societies including American Academy of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Association of Academic Physiatrists, North American Neuromodulation Society, Florida Society of Interventional Pain Physicians. 

Dr. Patel was voted #1 Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Physician by Tampa Bay Magazine and runner up for top Pain Medicine Physician. He was awarded the “Teacher of the Year” award by the Interventional Pain Fellowship at University of South Florida in 2020.  

 Dr. Patel brings his broad knowledge base and interventional therapies to Tampa Bay Spine & Injury to help patients with spine and musculoskeletal complaints.

Christopher Schrock, M.D.

Dr. Schrock was born and raised in Tampa Florida.  He completed his undergraduate and medical school training at the University of South Florida.  He went on to do an anesthesia residency at the University of Tennessee. Then, he returned to Tampa to do an Interventional Pain Fellowship.  He was hired on staff at USF to serve his hometown community.  He holds privileges at multiple local hospitals, which represents his desire to care for a wide variety of patients.  His primary appointment is at the James A Haley VA hospital where he is medical director of the Chronic Outpatient Rehabilitation Pain Program.  But, he is also still active at Moffitt Cancer Center and practices his primary specialty of anesthesiology at AdventHealth. 

Neal Shah, M.D.

Dr. Shah graduated from an accelerated 6 year BS/MD program from NEOMED in Ohio and then continued his training in Anesthesiology at Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA.  He completed his ACGME accredited fellowship at the University of South Florida (USF) and is currently Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Interventional Pain management at the prestigious Moffitt Cancer Center.

Dr. Shah centers on a multidisciplinary approach to treating painful conditions. This includes treatment of highly complex pain conditions, pain medication management, customized physical therapy, and fluoroscopically/ultrasound/CT guided interventional pain and spine procedures. His procedures include implantable spinal cord and peripheral nerve stimulators, radiofrequency ablation, targeted drug delivery systems, kyphoplasty, headache/facial pain management, and various complex neurolytic injections.

While at Moffitt, Dr. Shah continues to present at national meetings and teach other physicians as part of hosting numerous educational cadaver labs.  In addition to his role at Moffitt, he is also assistant professor of the Pain Medicine fellowship at the University of South Florida and is an integral part of the fellowship and selection committee.  He has a passion for teaching and continues to train medical students, residents and fellows throughout the area. Dr. Shah has contributed to review articles, book chapters, along with publications in a number of highly acclaimed journals and has developed a national curriculum related to interventional pain management. 

Dr. Shah brings his extensive knowledge base, experience and expertise in interventional pain management to Tampa Bay Spine & Injury to help patients in the most effective way possible.

Rakesh Shah, M.D.

Dr. Rakesh Shah started his medical education at the B.J. Medical College in Ahmedabad, India where he earned his Doctorate in Medicine. He then continued to become a Board Certified 

Neurologist at Howard University Hospital, Washington D.C. He also became Board Certified in Psychiatry and has been practicing medicine since 2001.

Dr. Shah recently joined Tampa Bay Spine and Injury to extend his expertise to those victims involved in automobile accidents.  He treats patients with postconcussion symptoms, pain and numbness, radiculopathies, headaches, and traumatic brain injuries. He also sees patients in his private practice in New Port Richey, FL for strokes, movement disorders, Parkinson’s Disease, tremors, Neuropathies and many others.

Dr. Shah is the Director of Neurology at AdventHealth Hospital Connerton and additionally runs the preceptorship for the Bayonet Point Regional Medical Center Residency program.

Dr. Shah is a husband and father to two beautiful girls. He enjoys his profession and helping patients as well as spending time with his family and golf.

Chiropractor Brandon Scott Elliott

Scott Elliott, D.C.

Doctor of Chiropractic. Licensed and practicing in the state of Florida, Dr. Scott O. Elliott graduated with honors from Cleveland Chiropractic college in Los Angeles, CA. He served on the Board of Directors for the California Chiropractic Association and has been recognized for clinical excellence and outstanding service to the profession. Dr. Elliott was also a part of an integrated physical medicine team where he treated less fortunate citizens using a multi-disciplinary approach to pain management and corrective musculoskeletal rehabilitation.

Dr Mark Elliott

Mark Elliott, D.C.

Doctor of Chiropractic. Dr. Mark Elliott graduated Magna Cum Laude from Cleveland Chiropractic College in Los Angeles, CA. Licensed in the state of Florida, he is the primary treating physician and back pain doctor at the Tampa Bay Spine and Injury Brandon location. While in school, Dr. Elliott participated as a treating intern in a research trial that studied the effects of chiropractic care in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis. He has worked as a volunteer in an integrative medical setting managing chronic pain patients and focuses on a functional approach to pain management and postural rehabilitation.

Brandon FL ChiropractorRobert De Stefano, Jr., D.C.

Doctor of Chiropractic. Licensed and practicing in the state of Florida, Dr. Robert De Stefano Jr. graduated from Sherman College of Chiropractic in Spartanburg, SC. While in school, Dr. De Stefano served as the President of the Student Government Association, the Vice President of the philosophical society, and an academic advisory committee member. He was the primary victor of the Chiropractic philosophy and patient education lecture competition, an ambassador for prospective scholars, and the receiver of the Service Distinction Award for contributions to Sherman College and the local community. He has participated in mission trips to the Dominican Republic and India, providing Chiropractic care to underprivileged natives; from infants to the elderly. His sports background, training on extremity adjusting, and certification in the activator technique.

Cara Dixon-Taliaferro, L.M.H.C.

Cara is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor with 14 years counseling experience specializing in Trauma, deficits in executive functioning, mood disorders and anxiety while also treating most other mental health conditions. Counseling services include counseling, coaching and support groups. She has experience in providing service in the public-school system, CINS/FINS program referrals, military veterans, law enforcement and first responders. Cara is licensed in the state of Florida and also holds certifications in Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Rapid Resolution Therapy (RRT) & Child-Parent Psychotherapy (CPP).



Find out more information about our neck and back pain doctors located in Brandon and St. Petersburg and how they can help you with low back pain, neck pain, headaches, and sports injuries. Contact Tampa Bay Spine & Injury today to make an appointment and start on your path to pain-free living.

We have three locations to serve you:

Brandon, FL (813) 381-3852

St. Petersburg, FL (727) 898-3852

Sarasota, FL (941) 248-2080