In a recent overview paper, Dr. Ishaan Swarup, MD, and Dr. Joseph F. O’Donnell, MD summarized the long and rich history of Orthopaedics. This is the branch of medicine associated with correcting bone and muscle deformities. Orthopedics gained momentum as a medical specialty after Nicolas Andry wrote a book about it in 1741. He was a medical professor at the University of Paris. In this medical specialty, doctors and surgeons focus on restoring the proper form of joints, bones, and tissues. Knee and hip surgeries are the most common types of orthopedic surgeries today, and modern specialists such as Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum can replace faulty joint components with implants. Modern orthopedic practices reflect some ideas of the past. Dr. Ignacio Ponseti’s in-depth research paper on the subject included some key points in history.
Scientists have found fossils and bones from primitive times that show evidence of fractures and breaks. Also, they show evidence of joint problems. As far back as the Stone Age, historians found evidence that there were crude amputation practices. Indigenous people in Australia used rawhide splints and clay splints before 500 B.C. Hierogl
yphs from ancient Egypt that date back as far as 300 B.C. depict splint usage. One of the most distinguished documents about orthopedics was written in Egypt, and it was likely penned by Imhotep. He was a renowned architect, astrologer, politician and physician in Egypt. The document is commonly called the Edwin Smith Papyrus. It was discovered in the 1860s and is still recognized as the oldest surgical textbook. The book is very detailed and describes topics such as mandibular dislocations, spinal injuries and fracture treatments. There are also specific descriptions for uncommon conditions such as torticollis and rarer occurrences such as ryt, which is the discharge that is associated with osteomyelitis.
Greeks and Romans
The Greeks and Romans also contributed to orthopedic history. Hippocrates was known as the father of medicine, and his knowledge-filled book called “Corpus Hippocrates” was written sometime between 430 B.C. and 330 B.C. It is still used today. In the book, there are specific topics about orthopedics. It describes several reductive movements and shoulder dislocations. Hippocrates had great insight on movements, and one of his methods is still used today to reduce dislocation in the anterior shoulder. His book describes clubfoot, infected open fracture treatments, traction principles, malunion implications and much more. Galen was a prominent surgeon during the Roman era and was a renowned gladiatorial physician. He provided profound descriptions of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. Today, he is still known as the father of sports medicine for his insights and knowledge contributions regarding sports-related orthopedic injuries and conditions.
After the Roman Empire fell, there were not many advancements in medicine for about 1,000 years. Religious rules prohibited human dissection and in-depth anatomical studies. Europe’s first medical school started in Italy during the ninth century. After a while, the University of Bologna became the first school to offer surgical studies and training. Guy de Chauliac was one of the most well-known surgeons of that era. He was a leader in establishing ethical principles and innovative fracture treatments. One of his specific suggestions is still used today for femur fractures that do not require surgery. His theory also echoed the importance of traction, which was originally suggested by Hippocrates and is still used today. Medicine started to separate from religion toward the end of the Middle Ages.
The artist Leonardo da Vinci was one of the contributors in this period. His artwork inspired more anatomical studies and research. Surgeons and scholars who lived during this era became famous for their contributions, and many modern theories and practices are based on their original teachings. Ignaz Semmelweis, Robert Koch, and Louis Pasteur were just a few examples of people who were antisepsis and surgical management revolutionaries. When the field of orthopedics expanded quickly after the Renaissance, more hospitals were built, and many hospitals had special wards or areas for people with orthopedic injuries and conditions. In the late 1800s and throughout the early 1900s, medical facilities that were specifically for orthopedic patients started appearing.
During the past century, infections were easier to control with new developments. As technology improved rapidly, more advancements were made. The development of X-rays was just one example of how technology transformed orthopedics. From osteoarthritis to fractures, X-rays are useful for diagnosing a wide array of conditions and injuries. Russell Hibbs developed a fusion technique for spinal surgery that revolutionized orthopedics as well. There were also great advancements in amputation and wound care. The first metal hip arthroplasty was performed in the early 1940s. Joint replacement followed that event under the leadership of Sir John Charnley about two decades later. Today, joint replacement surgeries are more common and are recommended for people with impaired mobility due to injuries or chronic conditions.
Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum And His Contributions To Orthopedics
Another notable orthopedic figure of today is Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum. He works for the Bronxcare Health System and serves as the Chairman of orthopedic surgery there. Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum completed his undergraduate studies at Brown University and studied medicine at Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He completed a fellowship in Orthopedic Surgery at the Rothman Institute after he finished his residency. Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum went to Harvard Business School after he finished his medical training and earned a certificate in healthcare delivery management. After that, Dr. he co-founded Medscape and a few other notable medical organizations. Medscape went on to be acquired by GQ and WebMD. Along with his accomplishments in this area, he served as a Community Health Editor for WebMD.
Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum is known in the orthopedic field as an innovator and as a design expert. He specializes in process engineering, information technology, and operational leadership. Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum helped design multiple joint replacement systems that are used in surgeries today. He has delivered lectures and has published educational materials about orthopedic surgery, joint replacements and technological developments in orthopedics. With extensive ex
perience, Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum has completed thousands of joint replacement surgeries. He specializes in knee, hip and shoulder replacement surgeries as well as adult reconstructive surgeries. Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum has won several awards over the years for innovation, ethics and quality care.Before dedicating himself to the Bronxcare team, Dr. Kirshcenbaum ran his own practice from 2000-2008. He also served as the Chief of Adult Reconstructive Surgery at Kaiser Peramanente System. He is also the Advisory Chief Technology Officer for the Swiftpath program and the Chief Medical Officer for DTC Healthcom. In addition to providing quality care to his patients, Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum has been a long time member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and has served on the EHR Project Team since 2010.
Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum is a reputable medical professional who invests in his patients. In a recent interview, he stated the importance of connecting with his staff members. When asked about an important habit to improve productivity he replied, “Focusing on connecting with each of the surgeons and doctors in my department on a weekly basis as well as frequent and focused meetings with key management.”
His dedication, hard work, and love for the field are part of what helps Dr. Ira Kirshenbaum stand out. Ultimately Orthopaedics is continually evolving with new technology, surgical techniques, and knowledge about the human body.