The Next Generation: Legacy of Expertise
Physicians who gain valuable experience during their specialized training represent the newest generation who are part of the team of affiliated specialists at Memorial Hermann Joint Centers.
These young, skilled orthopedic surgeons are capably providing individualized treatment for each patient, offering solutions for pain relief, while advising patients about options to improve their quality of life. They specialize in the diagnosis and medical and surgical management of disorders of bones, tendons, joints, muscles, ligaments and nerves.
Physicians affiliated with Memorial Hermann Joint Centers include some of the most experienced and highly trained orthopedic surgeons in the Houston area. Each team member is specially trained to provide the highest quality and innovative, personalized care for each patient and their family.
“Our orthopedic surgeons are board-certified or board-eligible specialists who completed their residency training, and often a fellowship, in orthopedic surgery after graduating from medical school,” explains W.L. (Lin) Jones, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon with UT Physicians and an assistant professor in the department of orthopedic surgery at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth. Dr. Jones is the Medical Director of the Total Joint Replacement Center at Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital.
Valuable Learning Opportunities
W.L. (Lin) Jones, M.D.
After completing medical school, physicians complete a residency which provides in-depth training in a specific branch of medicine. Additionally, they may choose to complete a fellowship or subspecialty training. For example, a fellowship in orthopedic surgery averages two years and, although optional, it enables a physician to gain additional expertise in a specific area of orthopedics, such as pediatrics or joint replacement.
A fellowship usually lasts one year, but some physicians choose to do an extensive research project that can take another year.
“All of our surgeons are very proficient in their specialty,” adds Dr. Jones. “During residency and fellowship, our surgeons observe complex and challenging cases performed by very experienced surgeons. These are immensely valuable learning opportunities that lead to surgical expertise.”
Dr. Jones is one of those experienced surgeons who has been sharing his knowledge with young surgeons for the past 20 years. “I enjoy serving as a mentor and being available to discuss difficult cases or innovative techniques,” says Dr. Jones. “Our young physicians are well trained, are very capable and very receptive about this learning process.”
The mentorship period is a beneficial transition into private practice for a physician and it is very helpful to have a senior-level physician available for additional guidance or information.
“Our entire team of affiliated specialists is very skilled,” adds Dr. Jones. “Our orthopedic surgeons have world-class training and expertise, and are committed to the highest quality of patient care, using the most advanced technology.”
Steven Schroder, M.D.
Steven Schroder, M.D., completed a fellowship in adult reconstructive surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital in the Boston-Harvard University Combined Orthopedic Surgery Program and is an assistant professor in the department of orthopedic surgery at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth.
Dr. Schroder appreciates the value of a fellowship, as well as the mentorship from a senior surgeon such as Dr. Jones. “It is very rewarding to work with Dr. Jones and I appreciate his generosity in sharing the expertise he has gained during his career,” he says. “I enjoy getting to know his patients and helping to find the best solutions for their joint pain.”
Practicing medicine today, Dr. Schroder finds his patients are more savvy and interested in making hands-on, informed decisions about their healthcare.
“It is vital, therefore, that my patients fully understand their condition, from the cause to the potential solutions,” he adds. “Taking time to thoroughly inform my patients and answer their questions affords them the comfort and confidence they deserve in making these important decisions.”
David Rodriguez, M.D.
David Rodriguez, M.D., specializes in hip and knee reconstructive surgery and is assistant professor in the department of orthopedic surgery at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth. Dr. Rodriguez completed his fellowship in hip and knee reconstructive surgery at Baylor College of Medicine.
“Being fellowship trained in joint replacement provided me with numerous case experiences and mentorships from world-class surgeons,” he explains. “Those are very beneficial to optimize decision-making skills when facing a complex clinical decision. A fellowship enables young surgeons to sharpen their skills when performing the most complicated reconstruction surgeries from an early point in their career.”
Dr. Rodriguez believes in open lines of communication with patients and their families to ensure individualized patient care. “I like to spend time with my patients and make every effort to understand their problems and their goals,” he says.
“Joint replacement,” he adds, “is a fantastic procedure for pain relief and improving a patient’s quality of life. This option should be pursued only after all conservative measures have been attempted and any medical conditions, such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes, are controlled.”
Eddie Huang, M.D.
Eddie Huang, M.D., completed his fellowship at the Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation. “During a fellowship, an orthopedic surgeon may perform 500 to 600 total hip/knee replacements, gaining valued experience,” says Dr. Huang. “However, I never rush a patient into surgery,” he explains. “With the majority of my patients, I recommend starting with nonsurgical treatments, such as anti-inflammatory medicine, a steroid injection and physical therapy,” he says. “I want to evaluate how the patient does with these treatments and that gives the patient time to become medically optimized to proceed with surgery.”
Dr. Huang also addresses medical issues, such as obesity, diabetes or heart disease. “Joint replacement requires a major commitment on the part of the patient,” he notes. “For example, they must work hard at physical therapy. It is important the patient is ready for surgery, both medically and psychologically.”
Memorial Hermann Joint Centers are conveniently located throughout the Greater Houston area: Bellaire, Greater Heights, Katy, Memorial City, Southeast, Southwest, Sugar Land and The Woodlands.
To learn more, call (713) 272-1888.