Joe Walter Kutz, Jr., MD Assistant Professor at UT Southwestern Medical Center
UTSW Physician Practicing at Children's Health
Walter Kutz, M.D., is an otologist who specializes in treating infants and children facing diseases impacting the ear, skull base and temporal bone such as chronic ear disease, cholesteatoma, hearing loss, and skull base tumors. Through advanced surgical techniques, he helps to improve a child’s ability to hear.
Dr. Kutz is one of only a few surgeons in Texas who performs auditory stem implant surgery, a treatment for neurofibromatosis type 2. During the complex procedure, Dr. Kutz works with colleagues in neurosurgery to place an implant into the brainstem to restore hearing. Without the implant, a patient would have complete deafness.
He also performs cochlear implant surgery to treat severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss. Dr. Kutz considers this surgery to be one of the most rewarding procedures he performs.
“I treat a number of infants, children and adolescents who can’t hear – and often won’t be able to hear – unless they receive a cochlear implant,” says Dr. Kutz. “Not all children with severe to profound hearing loss will be a candidate for cochlear implants, but we work with each family to understand a child’s needs and a family’s communication preferences. It’s exciting to see children one or two years after cochlear implantation talking when you know this would not be possible without this technology.”
Dr. Kutz graduated with honors with his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He also completed his otolaryngology residency at Baylor before completing a two-year fellowship in otology and neurotology at the House Ear Clinic in Los Angeles, where the first cochlear implant was developed. He is board certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology with a certificate of added qualification in Neurotology.
Dr. Kutz is involved in multiple clinical research projects to improve hearing in both adults and children. He researches how to improve outcomes for patients with cochlear implants, acoustic neuroma, and implantable hearing devices.
“We’ve expanded the conditions with which we can treat with cochlear implants,” says Dr. Kutz. “With new electrode design and surgical techniques, we’re able to preserve some residual hearing in a significant number of patients. At UT Southwestern, we participate in clinical trials regarding hearing preservation with cochlear implants.”
As an Associate Professor in the Department of Otolaryngology at UT Southwestern, Dr. Kutz trains the next generation of ENT surgeons. He serves as the Director of the Neurotology Fellowship Program and Associate Residency Director of the Otolaryngology Residency Program.
Dr. Kutz is frequently asked to share his clinical and surgical expertise at both national and international meetings.
In his free time, Dr. Kutz enjoys playing and listening to classical music.
Education and Training
Medical SchoolBaylor College of Medicine (2000)
InternshipBaylor College of Medicine (2001), General Surgery
ResidencyBaylor College of Medicine (2005), Otolaryngology
FellowshipHouse Ear Institute (2007), Otology/Neurotology
Conditions & Treatments
Research & Publications
- Pediatric Langerhans cell histiocytosis of the lateral skull base. Majumder A, Wick CC, Collins R, Booth TN, Isaacson B, Kutz JW. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2017 Aug;99:135-140
- Multiple unilateral skull base defects in a child with conductive hearing loss. Scott BL, Wick CC, Shah GB, Booth TN, Kutz JW. Otol Neurotol. 2017 Aug;38(7):e209-e210.
- Transcanal Endoscopic Ear Surgery for the Management of Congenital Ossicular Fixation. Zhu VF, Kou YF, Lee KH, Kutz JW Jr, Isaacson B. Otol Neurotol. 2016 Sep;37(8):1071-6.
- The Impact of Postmeningitic Labyrinthitis Ossificans on Speech Performance After Pediatric Cochlear Implantation. Liu CC, Sweeney M, Booth TN, Lee KH, Kutz JW, Roland P, Isaacson B. Otol Neurotol. 2015 Dec;36(10):1633-7.
- Transcanal Endoscopic Management of Cerebrospinal Fluid Otorrhea Secondary to Congenital Inner Ear Malformations. Kou YF, Zhu VF, Kutz JW Jr, Mitchell RB, Isaacson B. Otol Neurotol. 2016 Jan;37(1):62-65.
- High-Resolution CT Findings in Children with a Normal Pinna or Grade I Microtia and Unilateral Mild Stenosis of the External Auditory Canal. Jacob R, Gupta S, Isaacson B, Kutz JW Jr, Roland P, Xi Y, Booth TN. AJNR Am Neuroradiol. 2014 Aug 14.
- High-resolution 3-D T2-weighted imaging in the diagnosis of labyrinthitis ossificans: emphasis on subtle cochlear involvement. Booth TN, Roland P, Kutz JW Jr, Lee K, Isaacson B. Pediatr Radiol. 2013 Jul 11.
- Pediatric stapedectomy: Does cause of fixation affect outcomes? Neilan RE, Zhang RW, Roland PS, Isaacson B, Lee KH, Kutz JW. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2013 June 6:850-853.
- Cochlear implantation in children with cochlear nerve absence or deficiency. Kutz JW, Lee KH, Isaacson B, Booth TN, Sweeney MH, Roland PS. Otol Neurotol. 2011 June 8.
- Pediatric otogenic lateral sinus thrombosis recanalization. Neilan RE, Isaacson B, Kutz JW, Lee KH, Roland PS. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2011 Jun;75(6):850-3.
Professional Associations and Affiliations
- American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery
- American Neurotology Society
- Dallas Academy of Otolaryngology
- Dallas County Medical Society
- North American Skull Base Society
- Otosclerosis Study Group
- Society of University Otolaryngologists
- Texas Association of Otolaryngology
- Texas Medical Association
- The Triological Society
Awards & Honors
- American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery
- Honor Award (2012)
- Chief Resident Appreciation Award
- Outstanding Contribution and Leadership (2009)
- J. Charles Dickens Award
- Outstanding Basic Science Research
- Houston Society of Otolaryngology
- 1st place resident research competition
- Teaching Award
- Award for teaching excellence by residents
- Alpha Omega Alpha
- Medical Honor Society
- Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery
- Outstanding Achievement
- GATE Pharmaceuticals
- Outstanding Student Award
- The John P. McGovern, M.D. Award
- Excellence in Psychiatry