World Institute of Pain

In Memoriam

Samuel J. Hassenbusch, III, MD, PhD, FIPP

Samuel J. Hassenbusch, III, MD, PhD, FIPP

Feb 6, 1954 – Feb 25, 2008

Dr. Samuel J. Hassenbusch III was born on February 6th, 1954 in St. Joseph, MO. Samuel went by the nicknames “Sam” and “Hoppy.”  As he grew up under influence of his parents Samuel and Suzanne Hassenbusch, he continued to achieve high marks at school and excelled at everything he tried. He played both the violin and the trumpet as he entered high school at Central High School.  In the summer of 1970 Sam traveled through Europe.  In high school Samuel earned his Eagle Scout.

In 1970 while in high school he met Rhonda Warner and fell in love. Upon graduating high school at the age of 17 to pursue Medical School, he married Rhonda Warner on May 23, 1972 in St. Joseph, MO.  They then relocated to Baltimore, Maryland where Samuel attended Johns Hopkins University to do his Clinical Internship, Clinical Residency, Clinical Residency in Neurosurgery, and Research Residency in Pharmacology.  Samuel received his Medical Degree and degree in Pharmacology from Johns Hopkins University.  He received many awards throughout his college days.  While living in Baltimore, Samuel “Jack” Hassenbusch IV was born on December 16, 1978.  Then on April 9, 1980 Jason Arthur Hassenbusch was born and lastly, on October 22, 1982 Amanda Sue Hassenbusch was born.  From 1987 to 1988 Samuel was the Instructor for the Department of Neurosurgery at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

In 1988 the family relocated to Cleveland, Ohio where Samuel continued his career as a neurosurgeon at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.  From 1989 to 1993 Samuel was the head of the Department of Neurosurgery, Section of Neuro-Pharmacologic Oncology and Pain Management at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.  For the last year in Ohio, he was a staff Member of General Anesthesiology in the Pain Management Center at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.

In 1993 the Hassenbusch family relocated to Houston, Texas where Samuel continued his career at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.  In 1993 he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery, Division of Surgery at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.  In 1996 he became an Associate Professor, and then in 1998 an Associate Professor with Tenure.  From 2001 to the present he was a Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery in the Division of Surgery and from 2005 to the present he was the Medical Director of the Physicians Referral Service at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.  From 2006 to the present he was an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery, Division of Surgery at Baylor College of Medicine.

Samuel earned many awards during his lifetime; from 1983 to 2007 there was at least one award a year recognizing his accomplishments. He joined many committees and professional societies, taught courses, reviewed journals, and attended and spoke at many medical conferences around the world.  Samuel did much research during his career and with the research he wrote thirty-one book chapters and eighty-one articles in peer-reviewed journals.  In the summer of 2002 he aired on the Houston Medical TV show concerning one of his patients (Marnie Rose) with a brain tumor.

In May of 2005 Samuel was diagnosed with glioblastoma in the right frontal lobe.  He had surgery in May of 2005 to remove the tumor.  He had done much research previously on this type of tumor and decided that he wanted to be a “six foot lab rat” and try out new medical combinations to help reduce, if not eliminate the tumor in his brain.  During his cancer journey many articles were written about him and published in The Houston Chronicle Newspaper, Texas Monthly Magazine, Newsweek Magazine, and aired on CBS Evening News with Katie Couric.

Samuel Hassenbusch devoted his life to his work and that of healing people.  In his spare time he loved to go motorcycle riding, travel around the world to see new places, play with his two dogs, watch movies, and increase his knowledge of history and the Bible.  He was an amazing husband, father, grandfather, doctor, and biblical scholar.

Retrieved February 26, 2008, from