Dr. Johnson began his practice at KOC in 1995 after an outstanding educational background that includes being valedictorian at Southeast Missouri State University. He earned his medical degree from Northwestern where he was granted membership in the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society. He did his internship and residency at Vanderbilt before completing a fellowship in spinal disorders at Emory.

Dr. Johnson is a member of the North American Spine Society and the Vanderbilt Orthopaedic Society.

He enjoys the challenge of treating difficult spinal problems. Away from the office, Dr. Johnson enjoys cycling, running and canoeing. At home, he is often found in the kitchen practicing his impressive cooking skills.


Contact Information

Office Info KOC: 865-558-4400
Appointments: 865-558-4444
Office Location

Old Weisgarber Road
Fort Sanders West
North Knoxville Medical Center Physicians Plaza

Administrative Assistant


865-558-4425 or internal ext 4425

865-410-7886 or internal ext 7886



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What patients say about Dr. johnson

  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I can finally have relief from the worst pain that I have ever experienced in my life. Dr. Paul Johnson from the first appointment through surgery and after care was exceptional above any I have ever received from a doctor. He explained what was wrong in my lower back which was a herniated disc pinching a nerve. He suggested fusion and decompression and explained start to finish what would occur. I had no doubt he was who I wanted to care for me. He did the surgery and when he came to the hospital room the next day, after examining my incision and lower back, he sat down and talked with me. I have never had a doctor do that and impressed me beyond words! I already have passed along his name if a doctor in his field was needed. I just wanted to let you know he kept his word and I never felt rushed. So thank you Dr. Paul Johnson. I can’t thank you enough and feel blessed with your care.
    – Sherri, Mascot
  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I can enjoy life without excruciating pain again! Dr. Paul Johnson provided a great first impression to me, shaking my hand and thanking me for calling for an appointment to establish with him. He took time to listen to my symptoms/concerns and really HEARD me. The suggestion he gave for my problem of an SI joint injection turned out to be just what I needed to start enjoying life without excruciating pain in my back. I am a mother of 4 young girls, including a one-year-old who has truly taken a toll on my SI pain, but now I can run around with my kiddos again, and sleep without being woken up with severe back pain - it's truly remarkable! All thanks to Dr. Johnson. I would HIGHLY recommend him to anyone seeking care. He will give you the personal attention you need.
    – Michelle, Luttrell
  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I have my life back!! I had spinal fusion and disc decompression done on November 6 by Dr. Paul Johnson and I can’t thank him enough for giving me my life back. My 27th wedding anniversary is February 14 and my 52nd birthday is February 19. I never thought I would ever be without back pain again in my life, but everything Dr. Johnson said start to finish went as he said and now not to have back pain at all brings me to tears because no words express my gratitude to him as well as his staff. This is the first doctor I’ve taken the time to thank and I hope my words will help others who are reluctant to have surgery. He’s an amazing person.
    – Sherri, Mascot
  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I can now fix my own hair and go back to work. Two months ago I had so much pain and tingling and numbness in both arms that I was not able to do a lot of things. Thank you Dr. Paul Johnson for doing such a great job on my cervical fusion. I woke up after surgery with no numbness or tingling in my arms. Recovery was great. I would recommend KOC and Dr. Paul Johnson to anyone who needs any type of cervical or spinal surgery. He's the best. Dr. Johnson has the best bed side manner and is a straight shooter with information. Thank you again Dr. Johnson for giving me my life back. I pray God blesses you in all you do.
    – Janice, Seymour
  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I can live life pain free again! Dr. Paul Johnson is a fabulous doctor. He agreed to do a cervical fusion that he believed could be (and I believe proved to be) a difficult one. He is a skilled surgeon who also has a good bedside manner. He makes you feel comfortable from the outset. He speaks plainly to help you understand your problem and what he proposes to do to try to help you. After having severe pain and tingling in my arm and shoulder for several months, I awoke from surgery pain free! There was little pain in the weeks following surgery and I am now, five months later, pain free and pretty much back to a reasonably active lifestyle. I am counting on my upcoming visit with Dr. Johnson to be final and to be given the green light to do everything I have always been used to doing. I would recommend Dr. Johnson to anyone for any spinal problem.
    – Phyllis, Mosheim
  • After I was diagnosed with spinal stenosis, we visited several surgeons. It was determined that I had no choice but get the spinal surgery. After intensive research, we came across Dr. Paul Johnson of KOC. From the time we visited his office until today, no one has made us as comfortable as Dr. Johnson. He kept my family informed during the surgical procedure & made a call afterwards to inform them that all had gone well. During the postoperative visits, his staff at KOC & Dr. Johnson have maintained a very in-depth review of my recovery. I will recommend Dr. Johnson to anybody who has any type of back or neck problems.
    – Manny, Knoxville
  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I can walk better and have gotten the pain relief I was needing. Dr. Paul Johnson is an excellent doctor who explained in great detail everything that was going to take place during surgery and what would take place after surgery. I am lucky to have had such a great doctor do my back surgery.
    – Charles, Maynardville
  • Thanks to my care at KOC, I can now get out of the house and not be in pain all the time. I can look forward to the future and enjoying life again.
    At my first visit I knew I had come to the right place. Not only did I feel comfortable with my doctor, I felt like he cared about me. He explained my condition, his recommendation for treatment and how this would help me. His bedside manner was what I needed to get me through since my condition was not only causing pain but bringing me down fast. I will go back for any back or neck problems I have and most definitely will ask for Dr. Johnson. I want to say all the staff at KOC treated me with respect and caring. THANK YOU Dr. Johnson for your care, compassion and overall personality. All of these things came together to provide me with the BEST care I could get!
    – Norma, Dandridge
  • When I first went to see Dr. Paul Johnson, I immediately felt his sympathy for my 20+ years of what I had been told by other orthopaedics was "sciatic" and not much hope was given. Dr. Johnson took the time to find out what the real problem was, without hesitation. He did several tests before diagnosing my problem. It was then we decided we would go the route of doing surgery (I had never had any ortho surgery prior to this). He clipped the tendon behind the piriformis muscle (glute muscles) and 6 weeks later I have absolutely NO pain after 20+ years and it feels AWESOME! My scar looks great and I am very pleased with Dr. Johnson's overall professionalism, knowledge and capabilities. I have often referred to him as my "Superman". I have never encountered a doctor of any specialty with such determination to help me! Thank you, Dr. Johnson! I will forever be grateful to you for "fixing me" :)
    – Staci, Kingston
  • Dr. Paul Johnson is a wonderful doctor! I wouldn't go anywhere else. He is the best!
    – Ashly, Jacksboro


  • B.S., Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, Missouri, 1985
  • M.D., Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, Illinois, 1989


  • General Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee, 1990


  • Orthopaedic Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee, 1994


  • Spinal Disorders, Emory University Hospital, Atlanta, Georgia, 1995

Began Practice At KOC

  • 1995

Board Certification

  • American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery


  • Vanderbilt Orthopaedic Society
  • North American Spine Society

Orthopaedic Specialty

  • Spinal Disorders and Spinal Surgery