Dr. Yonas obtained his medical degree from Ohio State University. He completed internship and residency in Neurosurgery at Case Western Reserve University. Between internship and residency he served in the US Air Force as a flight surgeon. Following residency Dr. Yonas completed fellowships in microsurgery in Zurich, Switzerland and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Dr Yonas joined the faculty of the University of Pittsburgh in 1978. He became a tenured professor in 1988 and was named the Peter J. Jannetta Professor of Neurosurgery in 1995. Dr. Yonas served as the Vice Chair of the department and the Director of Cerebrovascular Surgery. Dr. Yonas helped create and served as the Co-director of the UPMC Stroke Institute.
Dr Yonas joined the university of New Mexico as chair of a new department of neurological surgery. He receives the title of distinguished professor if UNM in 2012. He has built a diverse department that provides the majority of complex neurosurgical care for the state of New Mexico.
Dr. Yonas is the PI on a 15.1 million dollar CMS Innovations Grant awarded September 2014. The grant A.C.C.E.S.S. "Access to Critical Cerebral Emergency Support Services" will put state of the art tele-health/medicine equipment in 30 New Mexico Hospitals to provide emergent neurological and neurosurgical consultations. The grant will last three years. The model is uniquely low cost and potentially widely applicable.
Dr. Yonas is actively involved in the development of new technologies for improved understanding and treatment of cerebrovascular and traumatic disorders of the brain. He helped develop and implement the use of quantitative cerebral blood flow measurements using the combination of stable xenon inhalation and CT scanning.
Dr. Yonas is a member of multiple medical societies including the Senior Society of Neurological Surgeons. He has authored more than 100 articles and edited two books.
Special interests include: Stroke prevention and treatment of cerebrovascular disorders; Microvascular decompression for Tic Doloureux (trigeminal neuralgia); Photography and sailing.