Latest News

Category Archives: Research & Innovation

Scottish Rite Hospital Doctors Attend the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) Annual Meeting

Last week, several doctors from Scottish Rite Hospital attended the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) annual meeting in San Diego, California. AAOS was founded in 1933 and has grown to be the world’s largest medical association, serving more than 39,000 members worldwide. This association provides practice management and education for orthopedic surgeons and allied health professionals.

The five-day conference included exhibits, presentations and instructional courses covering a full range of topics in orthopedics. Our staff made presentations on various research areas including hip dysplasia, sports medicine, musculoskeletal infection, fractures, Perthes Disease, and scoliosis. It was a great opportunity for the doctors to showcase their work and collaborate with medical professionals from around the world.

On the final day of AAOS, the meeting concluded with Specialty Day. This includes sixteen Specialty Societies that feature the latest research in their areas of expertise. Members of each society are selected to present on a topic associated with their specialty. Director of Research, Harry Kim, M.D., and staff orthopedists, Christine Ho, M.D., and Lawson Copley, M.D. each made presentations on topics regarding pediatric orthopedics. This section of the meeting allows members to be a part of a concentrated program to expand their discussions and highlight their expertise.

Scottish Rite Hospital has consistently had a strong presence at AAOS each year. It is an honor that our doctors are members of this established group and are selected to present their research on an international stage. The Academy allows our staff to learn and grow as surgeons to ultimately bring better care to our patients.

Scottish Rite Hospital Hosts Inaugural Genomics Conference

Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children is hosting an inaugural international conference titled, “Genomic Approaches to Understanding and Treating Scoliosis.” The three-day meeting unites two distinct groups who are dedicated to scoliosis genetics research, the International Consortium for Vertebral Anomalies and Scoliosis (ICVAS) and the International Consortium for Scoliosis Genetics (ICSG). A primary goal of the conference is to promote interdisciplinary research to solve the underlying basis of scoliosis, a complex and poorly understood disorder that is common in children. The conference has attracted basic science researchers and clinicians at the faculty level, as well as fellows, graduate students, and other trainees who are focused on scoliosis and genomics. Funding for the meeting is provided by grants awarded by the National Institutes of Health, the Scoliosis Research Society, Fondation Yves Cotrel, and the Globus, Medtronic, and Nuvasive companies.

The conference includes paper presentations from various attendees and lectures from seven international keynote speakers from the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Australia. These presenters represent distinct specialties including developmental biology, orthopedic surgery, clinical genetics, and human genetics. The topics will provide the audience with a diverse and insightful program.

Carol Wise, Ph.D., Director of Molecular Genetics and Basic Research at Scottish Rite Hospital, is an organizer of the conference. She views this meeting as an exciting opportunity to encourage collaborations and to bring new ideas to the treatment of the various complex forms of scoliosis. “It is a privilege to host specialists in scoliosis and scoliosis genetics from around the world here at the hospital,” says Wise. “This conference will generate a roadmap for collaborative research that will create future scientific breakthroughs. Importantly, this meeting also provides a forum for mentoring the next generation of researchers in the field.”

Continuing education for professionals and trainees is a cornerstone of the Scottish Rite Hospital mission. It is an honor to host this and other conferences to promote groundbreaking research and better care for our patients.

L. Ray Lawson, M.D., International Spine Fellowship: Educating Medical Professionals from Around the World

At Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, we are dedicated to education. The hospital offers several fellowship programs to provide a well-rounded experience for medical professionals interested in pediatric orthopedics. As an institution, it is a privilege for our doctors to have the opportunity to train individuals from all over the world.

One of the renowned programs at Scottish Rite Hospital is the L. Ray Lawson, M.D., International Spine Fellowship. This fellowship is in honor of L. Ray Lawson, M.D., for his many years of commitment and dedication to the treatment of pediatric spine disorders. This program is available to postgraduate surgeons who have completed an orthopedic residency. It provides the recipient the opportunity to rotate and observe our orthopedic surgeons and work on a spine-related research project.

Recently, a recipient of the L. Ray Lawson, M.D., International Spine Fellowship has completed his time at Scottish Rite Hospital. Ali Parsa, M.D., traveled to Dallas, Texas from Mashhad, Iran to spend six months learning from the best in pediatric orthopedics. He worked closely with Chief of Staff, Dan Sucato, M.D. and Stephen Sparagana, M.D, and the spine research team on a neuromonitoring study for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS). “This program allows the fellow to receive comprehensive training in spinal disorders”, says Assistant Chief of Staff Karl Rathjen, M.D. “It is an honor to have medical professionals traveling from around the world to train at Scottish Rite Hospital – the exchange of ideas enriches all of us and extends the reach of the cutting edge knowledge developed here in Dallas.”

Although Scottish Rite Hospital was a short stop for Dr. Parsa in his medical career, he will be able to take what he has learned back to Iran to continue his research and develop innovative techniques to treating spine disorders. It is an honor to educate physicians like Dr. Parsa, and all of the past and future recipients of this fellowship, to bring better care to children all over the world.

Let’s Talk Concussions

Scottish Rite Hospital experts are often on the road to share their research findings and experiences in caring for children. One example is our pediatric sports medicine physician Shane M. Miller, M.D. He has a passion for concussion education and it is evident in the frequent invitation he receives to speak on the topic. Here are a few examples:

    • Pediatricians studying for board certification, Philadelphia, PA
    • UT Southwestern Medical School Family Medicine Grand Rounds, Dallas, TX
    • Plano parent and coaches @ Prestonwood Sports Organization Soccer Coaches Meeting
    • Community event at Sci-Tech Discovery Center, Frisco, TX
    • School Nurses at the Episcopal School of Dallas, Dallas, TX
    • Frisco Soccer Association Coaches Meeting, Frisco, TX
    • McKinney ISD school nurses, McKinney, TX
    • National and international sports medicine specialists at Pediatric Research in Sports Medicine Annual Meeting, Dallas, TX
    • Local pediatricians at Pediatric Society of Greater Dallas quarterly meeting, Dallas, TX
    • Pediatricians and healthcare providers at Pediatric Orthopedic Education Series, Dallas, TX
    • Dallas community through interview and publication in Dallas Child Magazine
    • Physical Therapists and Athletic Trainers at DFW Sports Symposium, Southlake, TX

UntitledThis week Dr. Miller is at the NCAA Headquarters in Indianapolis at the Youth Sports Safety Summit.

The multi-disciplinary Youth Sports Safety Alliance hosts this annual event bringing together advocates for young athletes from across the country. Made up of athletic trainers, orthopedic surgeons, physicians, and school and youth sports organization administrators share lessons learned and collaborate to identify ways to make youth sports safer. Dr. Miller will be talking about the importance of immediate removal from play after a suspected sports-related concussion. He will highlight results from a recent study of his patients showing that 4/10 go back to play or continue playing on the day of their injury. He emphasizes the phrase “when in doubt, sit them out.”

If you have a group that would like to learn more about sports-related concussions or another pediatric sports medicine topic, please email lindsay.linteman@tsrh.org.

For information about injury prevention and pediatric sports medicine, please visit our website at scottishritehospital.org/sports.

Molecular Genetics Team Awarded National Institutes of Health Grants

Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children is world-renowned for its patient care, research and education. Over the years, our physicians and researchers have made groundbreaking discoveries that have enlightened our understanding of medical conditions to improve our patient care. In particular, the Division of Molecular Genetics has made innovative contributions to the hospital’s scoliosis research.

Genetics Lab 2017 _15Carol Wise, Ph.D., Director of Molecular Genetics and Basic Science Research, has led this division of the hospital in the discovery of several genetic factors associated with idiopathic scoliosis, the most common spinal deformity in children. Since that breakthrough, Dr. Wise and her team have continued their commitment to understand this complex disease through various research efforts.

Recently, Dr. Wise and Jonathan Rios, Ph.D., also a member of Scottish Rite Hospital’s Molecular Genetics team, were awarded three NIH (National Institutes of Health) grants, totaling over $7 million to fund research in idiopathic scoliosis. Two awards were received from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

The first grant will fund a program titled “Developmental Mechanisms of Human Idiopathic Scoliosis”. It will be shared with two other investigators at two other institutions including, Liliana Solnica-Krezel, Ph.D., at Washington University, and Nadav Ahituv, Ph.D., at the University of California, San Francisco over a span of five years. The goal of this research is to identify genetic risk factors in idiopathic scoliosis and to define the mechanisms by which these factors predispose children to spinal deformity.

The second grant awarded to Dr. Wise will fund an international meeting that will be held at Scottish Rite Hospital in March. The “Genomic Approaches to Understanding and Treating Scoliosis” conference will bring together physicians and researchers from across the world to present and synthesize latest discoveries in scoliosis research.

The third grant was awarded to Dr. Rios from the Gabriella Miller Kids First Pediatric Research Program. This grant funds the project “Genomics of Orthopaedic Disease (GOOD for Kids).” The project will use next-generation genomic technologies to discover genetic causes of adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS).

These highly competitive awards provide researchers at Scottish Rite Hospital the opportunity to continue groundbreaking research that will lead to better care for the children we treat.

Carol Wise, Ph.D., and Jonathan Rios, Ph.D., are professors at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW). Dr. Wise is a Professor in the McDermott Center for Human Growth and Development, Pediatrics, and Orthopedic Surgery and Dr. Rios is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Orthopedic Surgery.

It’s Like a Science Fair for Healthcare Professionals

Every year, kids try their hand at developing and conducting scientific research for the science fair. From growing mold to creating electrical circuits, they define their hypothesis, develop testing methods, perform the experiment and then thoughtfully consider the results.

At Scottish Rite Hospital, we follow the same steps of the scientific method and continually share our results with our peers. Sometimes, we are even eligible for awards when we present our studies at conferences, just like a local science fair. Our doctors and researchers travel both locally and internationally to present their research findings with the goal of spreading knowledge regarding specific pediatric orthopedic topics.

Recently, our pediatric sports medicine team presented a poster explaining the study and results from a review of sports-related concussion patients at the Texas Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine (TACSM) Annual Conference in Waco, Texas. This conference is designed to allow young researchers to showcase their work, receive feedback, and learn from experienced sports medicine researchers during lectures and educational events. The poster was considered as a finalist for the event’s “Doctoral Research Poster Award.” Aaron Zynda, research coordinator on the team, says, “It was an honor to be recognized with other researchers in the field of sports medicine and have the opportunity to present.”

The team previously presented preliminary results of this study at the American Academy of Pediatrics Annual Conference in the fall, but this time they focused on results for soccer players. The findings suggest that the soccer players are consistent with the larger group. Thirty seven percent answered yes when asked if they continued to play or returned to play on the same day as their injury. An interesting trend was that in this small group, the girls were more likely to continue or return to play. This behavior puts the athlete at risk of having worse symptoms and a longer recovery.

Co-author Shane M. Miller, M.D. says, “The most important component of clinical research is to find out how to apply the results to the athletes that are under our care and others in the community and across the nation.” He’s on his way to Indianapolis to share the results of the larger study at the Youth Sports Safety Summit next week.

Read more about our work in research, prevention and clinical care for sports-related concussions on our website.

Pediatric Orthopedic Education Series – “Looking Back and Looking Forward”

Over the weekend, Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children hosted the Pediatric Orthopedic Education Series (POES), “Looking Back and Looking Forward.” This one-day program invites local pediatricians, family practitioners, physician assistants and other medical professionals to learn from our doctors on various pediatric orthopedic topics.

Several of Scottish Rite Hospital’s doctors presented and led hands-on breakout sessions to give a well-rounded educational program. The experience provided medical professionals the opportunity to learn from the best in pediatric orthopedics. Topics included, musculoskeletal infection, scoliosis, hip, hand, and sports medicine injuries. During the hands-on sessions, attendees were able to watch and practice performing various techniques in splinting upper and lower extremity injuries and applying a pavlik harness for hip dysplasia.

Program Director of POES and Scottish Rite Hospital staff orthopedist, Amy McIntosh, M.D., saw this series as a chance to train local medical professionals about our hospital and how we treat our patients. It is a privilege that as a leader in pediatric orthopedics, we have the opportunity to educate locally to ultimately bring better care to all of the patients treated at Scottish Rite Hospital and the Dallas area.

2016 – A Year In Review

2016 was a wonderful year for the hospital. Take a look at some numbers from the year.

*Numbers reflect total patients treated during our fiscal year, October 2015 – September 2016.

Dyslexia Stat Foot Disorder StatHand StatHip StatLL Stat

Spine StatSports Stat

Prosthetics Stat


Additional Milestones from 2016

  • We celebrated the hospital’s 95th birthday in October. We’re proud to have treated 269,019 patients since 1921.
  • Groundbreaking_blogOn October 19, we broke ground on our second facility in Frisco, with plans of opening in Fall of 2018. The five-story, 345,000-square-foot structure will be strategically located to fulfill a growing need for patient care in the rapidly expanding North Texas area. The campus will offer clinics and day surgeries for children with orthopedic issues and will be anchored by our Center for Excellence in Sports Medicine.
  • We started seeing patients in our Fracture Clinic in Plano. This clinic is unique because patients do not need a doctor referral to be seen.
  • We launched our electronic medical records system in the fall. Have you set up your MySRH account?
  • Our signature event, Treasure Street, raised more than $1.1 million for the patients at Scottish Rite Hospital.
  • For the second consecutive year, the National Research Corporation (NRC) recognized the hospital’s dedication to excellent patient care with two Path to Excellence Awards. The hospital was also one of two institutions to receive recognition for Most Improved Facilities – Children’s Hospitals, based on improvement over last year’s award-winning inpatient performance scores.
  • Our research and clinical team were busy in 2016 with: 141 active research projects, 172 medical abstracts presented, 89 medical articles published and 119 appearances as guest medical speakers.

Thanks for supporting the hospital this year, we look forward to 2017!

Spine Experts Attend International Congress for Early Onset Scoliosis

The International Congress for Early Onset Scoliosis (ICEOS) is an annual meeting in which Scottish Rite Hospital has a consistent presence. The 10th annual ICEOS meeting took place in Holland on November 17 and 18. The conference brings together orthopedic surgeons and other medical professionals from around the world to discuss the challenging and complex characteristics of Early Onset Scoliosis.

Various research abstracts from the hospital have been selected to be presented from our doctors and researchers, including work from Dr. Brandon Ramo, Chief of Staff Dr. Dan Sucato, Assistant Chief of Staff Emeritus Dr. Charles Johnston, and researchers Johnny Zhang and Dong Tran, M.S. Representing the hospital are Drs. Ramo and Johnston, as well as research coordinator Dong Tran, M.S.

image1The ICEOS meeting is unique because of its primary focus. Early Onset Scoliosis (EOS) refers to a pediatric patient who is diagnosed with scoliosis under the age of ten. Cases can vary from severe to mild; however, it is a topic that is passed over in larger conferences. Dr. Brandon Ramo, medical director of ambulatory care at Scottish Rite Hospital and a member of the 2016 ICEOS faculty, states how important this meeting is for furthering the research of EOS. “The ICEOS meeting brings together a very small community of orthopedic surgeons and other physicians from around the world who are focused on a rare group of patients with tremendously complex, challenging disease processes,” said Ramo. “Since the condition of early onset scoliosis is a rare topic, it often gets marginalized or left out in larger meetings. This venue provides the opportunity for information sharing and presentation of research findings in a more intimate setting to a like-minded group of doctors dedicated to these unique patients.”

Like many of the other conferences that our medical staff attends throughout the year, ICEOS provides another opportunity for our doctors and researchers to present their work on an international stage. At this conference, a few of the research topics submitted by Scottish Rite Hospital include: effectiveness in casting of non-idiopathic scoliosis, the growth of the spine in a patient with EOS and curve progression in girls with idiopathic scoliosis. With Early Onset Scoliosis being the core of this meeting, it brings more discussion and groundbreaking innovation back to our hospital to ultimately give our patients back their childhood.


Doctors Head To Prague For 51st Annual Scoliosis Research Society Meeting

The Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) is an international society that puts on an annual conference to bring together leading spine surgeons and researchers from around the world. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the progress made towards the treatment of spinal deformities and to learn from top professionals in the field.

The 51st Annual Meeting will be held in Prague from September 22 to September 24 and include presentations from top professionals who treat spinal deformities at all levels and in all ages. The annual meeting and course consist of more than 125 presentations, which will cover an array of topics.

Every year, Scottish Rite Hospital is well represented at this conference and it provides our physicians with the opportunity to present the hospital’s finest work and showcase it on an international stage. From the thousands of abstracts submitted this past February, over ten of our studies were accepted for either podium or poster presentation at this year’s SRS meeting. The presentation topics include pediatric spine deformities, adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, bracing in AIS, and several others.

SRS Group

Chief of Staff, Dr. Dan Sucato, sees tremendous value in the quality of work that is presented at these international conferences. “The Scoliosis Research Society is, and has been, a critically important international meeting for Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children. It is an opportunity for us to showcase our research seeking to improve the lives of children with scoliosis and allows us to collaborate and network with surgeons and spine care providers throughout the world. We continue to have significant leadership positions within this prestigious organization, a true reflection of the hospital and the talented staff”.

As part of the conference, the SRS also gives several awards, which recognize the best paper and poster, submitted each year. Dr. Karl Rathjen, Dr. Dan Sucato, and their respective teams, have been nominated for an award. Dr. Rathjen is nominated for the Louis A. Goldstein Award, which is given to the best clinical research poster at the conference. His poster, Clinical Indications Associated with Abnormal MRIs in a Pediatric Spine Deformity Practice, shows that while pain was the most common reason to order an MRI, it was not a predictive factor of an abnormal MRI. Additionally, Dr. Dan Sucato has been nominated for the Hibbs Clinical Award for his paper with researcher, Johnny Zhang, titled Improvement in SRS22R Pain Scores after Surgery for AIS. This award is given to the best basic science and clinical papers at the conference and the nominees are selected to present their papers.

Scottish Rite Hospital continues to be recognized around the world for its groundbreaking research. The SRS, and many of the other international conferences, provide an opportunity for our doctors and researchers to not only showcase the hard work that happens here at the hospital, but it also allows them to further their education in order to provide top notch patient care.