Washington University Orthopedics participating in NFL spine treatment program

The National Football League has announced a new spine treatment program for retired players, and orthopedics specialists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have been chosen to participate.

K. Daniel Riew
K. Daniel Riew

“We’re honored to be one of the sites that will provide services to former NFL players with problems from old injuries or who simply have degenerative spine disease, which often can strike people as they get older,” says K. Daniel Riew, M.D., a cervical spine surgeon at Washington University Orthopedics and Barnes-Jewish Hospital. “Former players tend to have higher rates of degenerative spine disease than those in the general population.”

Riew, the Mildred B. Simon Distinguished Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and chief of the cervical spine service for Washington University Orthopedics, is one of five U.S. spine specialists selected to participate in the new NFL program. Others are at Mount Sinai in New York City, Emory University Orthopaedics and Spine Hospital in Atlanta, UCLA Health System in Los Angeles and the University of California, San Francisco. In addition to orthopedic spine surgeons, other specialists on treatment teams at the participating centers include neurosurgeons and physiatrists.

Washington University School of Medicine’s 2,100 employed and volunteer faculty physicians also are the medical staff of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s Hospitals. The School of Medicine is one of the leading medical research, teaching, and patient care institutions in the nation, currently ranked third in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s Hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.