Pediatric Orthopedic Center for Surgery

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Orthopedic Care at Boston Children's HospitalWhether your child has a broken arm, sports-related injury or the most complex spine condition, Boston Children's Hospital's Orthopedic Center is committed to providing comprehensive and compassionate care.

Established in 1903, we are one of the world’s most experienced pediatric orthopedic centers, and with thirteen specialty clinics, we are the largest in the U.S. We are also one of the busiest. Each year, our orthopedic team attends to more than 100,000 patient visits and performs over 6,000 surgeries.

Our center offers the full spectrum of care for orthopedic conditions, developmental disorders, as well as congenital, neuromuscular and post-traumatic problems of the musculoskeletal system. We also offer physical and occupational medicine, as well as orthotic and prosthetic devices.

Yet, while our treatments and innovations have greatly evolved over the past century, our philosophy remains the same—to relentlessly provide the best orthopedic care and patient service possible in order to improve the quality of life for our patients.

Orthopedic Center In the News

The future of treating ACL tears

Boston Children’s Martha Murray, MD, has studied ACL tears and sought ways to help the ligament heal without grafts or holes drilled into bones. The result has been a sponge scaffold now ready for testing in human knees. If all goes as hoped with human trials, the sponge scaffold could give athletes new, less invasive options for ACL repairs. In a Boston Globe article, Murray discusses what it took to go from engineering student to designing structures that help ACLs heal themselves and what she hopes the future holds.

Concerns bubble up as more young athletes specialize earlier

The Boston Globe reports that the rise of injuries among developing athletes — especially those who specialize — has been widely noted. Sports medicine professionals estimate that overuse problems account for about half of all pediatric sport injuries. Boston Children’s Mininder Kocher, MD, MPH, notes that kids 12 and under, both boys and girls, are still in their growth stages. Their growth plates are still open. Their bone and soft tissue biomechanics are different than a 14- or 16-year-old. They’re also still developing neuromuscularly.

Tommy John surgery and teen pitchers: what you need to know
Donald Bae, MD, a Boston Children’s Hospital orthopedic surgeon whose specialties include sports injuries of the upper limb and elbow injuries, answers parents’ questions about Tommy John surgery and ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) tears.

To learn more about preventing common baseball injuries, download Boston Children’s Injury Prevention guide. To read a Sports Illustrated feature about Boston Children's approach to Tommy John surgery click here.

Suffering on the sidelines, more athletes hit by ACL tears
The Boston Globe – South reports on ACL injuries in high school athletes and Boston Children’s Martha Murray, MD, explains that seventy percent of ACL tears are the result of noncontact injuries and the injury is more common among females than males, with the ratio ranging from 2 to 1 to 8 to 1. The Boston Globe – West and The Boston Globe – North also ran stories on the topic. The Boston Globe – West also included tips from Dr. Murray on ACL injury prevention.

Suffering on the sidelines, more athletes hit by ACL tears.

Needham High soccer star, other girls coping with rise in ACL tears

Girls’ soccer players dealing with rise in ACL tears

Tips to prevent ACL tears.

A pair of studies finds mistakes are common in treating pediatric fractures.


Clinical Innovation: a better way to repair ACL tears

ACL Illustration

Orthopedic surgeon and researcher, Martha Murray, MD, is developing ways to stimulate the healing of a patient's own ACL, rather than replacing it.

After most ligament tears, a blood clot forms, providing a temporary bridge that cells can crawl onto to begin the healing process. But in ACL injuries, fluid inside the knee joint dissolves the clot, so this bridge never forms. Learn how Dr. Murray and her team developed a mixture of collagen hydrogel and platelet-rich blood plasma that could facilitate ACL healing and developed surgical devices for this procedure.

Facts and figures

Peter Waters, MD

Did you know that every year, Boston Children’s Orthopedic staff attends to about 100,000 patient visits, conducts 6,000 surgeries, and performs more than 300 spine operations. For more interesting statistics, visit our Facts and Figures section. 

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The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO