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  • Why Dr. Dominic Thomas Kleinhenz joined University Orthopedics and the biggest obstacle in spine

    Why Dr. Dominic Thomas Kleinhenz joined University Orthopedics and the biggest obstacle in spine

    Alan Condon -  

    The Center for Spine Health at Providence, R.I.-based University Orthopedics added Dominic Thomas Kleinhenz, MD, to its medical staff.

    He specializes in the treatment of spine conditions such as disc herniations, degenerative cervical, thoracic, lumbar disease, spine trauma and spine deformity.

    Here, Dr. Kleinhenz shares what he is looking forward to about practicing with University Orthopedics, what he sees as the biggest barrier to spine care and the next big trend in spine.

    Question: What are you most excited about practicing with University Orthopedics? Can you share some insight into how your decision came about?

    Dr. Dominic Thomas Kleinhenz: I am most excited to continue University Orthopedics' tradition of providing excellent care to the people of Rhode Island. The collaboration between the nonoperative providers and surgeons within our spine center is unmatched. I am especially looking forward to helping develop a spine program at Westerly (R.I.) Hospital.

    Rhode Island has become home to my wife and our family over the past six years. I completed my residency in orthopedics and spine fellowship at Brown University in Providence, R.I., with University Orthopedics physicians. The invaluable mentorship that I received in my training reinforced my decision to stay with University Orthopedics as a partner.

    Q: What do you see as the biggest barrier preventing spine surgeons from providing optimum care?

    DK: The biggest barrier I see is insurance companies dictating care. As patients and surgeries become more complex, it will be interesting to see if insurance companies are going to continue to pay for these costly surgeries.

    Q: What do you see as the next big trend in spine?    

    DK: For more straightforward spine pathology, I think the next big trend will be continuing to evolve enhanced recovery after surgery programs to get patients back to their life, work, and activity sooner. For more complex spinal deformity surgery, I think the next big trend is going to be more broad and widespread use patient specific instrumentation, such as custom rods. Dr. Alan Daniels and myself have already completed a handful of adult spinal deformity cases using custom rods.

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