Rafi Avitsian M.D. is the Vice Chair for Professional Development in the Department of General Anesthesiology in Cleveland Clinic Foundation (CCF) in Cleveland, Ohio, USA. He is also the Section Head for the Neurosurgical Anesthesiology as well as the program director of Neuroanesthesia fellowship program. In addition to his clinical practice in the department as a staff anesthesiologist he is an Associate Professor of Anesthesiology in Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University. He is of Armenian origin. Born in Iran, he immigrated to Canada later in life before coming to Cleveland Clinic, where he completed his internship, residency and fellowship, with a focus on neurosurgical anesthesiology. After graduation, he joined the staff in the Department of General Anesthesiology at Cleveland Clinic. He is board-certified by the American Board of Anesthesiology.
His clinical interests include neurosurgical anesthesia, particularly anesthesia for intracranial vascular surgeries. His clinical studies are directed mostly towards finding the optimal anesthetic methods to decrease post-operative complications after neurosurgery. He is also interested in airway management, especially for patients with difficult airway issues, and he has an active role in teaching as well as innovating in the area of airway management. Dr. Avitsian also has special passion for resident education and was awarded various teaching awards including: Best Teacher of the Year, the Arthur Barnes Distinguished Teacher Award and the Distinguished Educator Award.