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University of Maryland School of Medicine Appoints Dr. Steven Ludwig to Lead Newly Established Division of Spine Surgery

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Steven C. Ludwig, M.D.
 Steven C. Ludwig, M.D.

New Multi-Disciplinary Division to Bring Spinal Care Research to a Higher Level

Andrew N. Pollak, M.D., Chair of the Department of Orthopaedics at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (SOM) and Dean E. Albert Reece, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., have appointed Steven C. Ludwig, M.D., as Head of the newly established Division of Spine Surgery in the Department of Orthopaedics. Dr. Ludwig is currently Professor of Orthopedics at the SOM. He oversees spinal surgery at the University of Maryland Medical Center, the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, the Baltimore VA Medical Center, and the University of Maryland Rehabilitation & Orthopaedic Institute (formerly Kernan Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation).

“Dr. Ludwig is a leading orthopaedic spine surgeon, clinical educator, and clinical investigator,” said Dean Reece, who is also Vice President for Medical Affairs at the University of Maryland and the John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor. “His work in the School of Medicine’s Department of Orthopaedics has resulted in the delivery of high-quality patient care, improvement in our capacity to conduct cutting-edge orthopaedic spine research, and world-class educational experiences for our students, residents, and fellows. We are pleased to appoint him as Head of our new Division of Spine Surgery in the Department of Orthopaedics and are confident his leadership will advance the School of Medicine as a world-class center for spine surgery, research and innovation.”

In his new role as Head of the Division of Spine Surgery, Dr. Ludwig will bring together a collaborative, multidisciplinary team approach in both conducting research and providing medical care for patients with spinal disorders. He is responsible for overseeing research in spine surgery, including the timing of the surgical management of patients sustaining spinal injury, variations of surgical treatment for patients with spinal disorders, and biomechanics of the spine and advanced techniques of spinal fixation.

Dr. Ludwig is a nationally and internationally distinguished academic orthopaedic surgeon whose specific areas of interest and clinical expertise include disorders of the cervical spine, minimally invasive spinal techniques, motion-preservation surgery, reconstruction of the traumatically injured spine, and tumor reconstruction. He has been the recipient of the American Orthopaedic Association Research Award, the Cervical Spine Research Society Award, the North American Spine Society Research Award, as well as the Pennsylvania Orthopaedic Society Award. He is an active member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the North American Spine Society, the Cervical Spine Research Society, AO North American Spine, the Society for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery, the American Orthopaedic Association, and the Orthopaedic Trauma Association.

Dr. Ludwig serves as section editor of cervical spine for Current Opinion in Orthopaedics, and works on the editorial staff for The Journal of Spinal Disorders and Techniques, The Spine Journal, and The Journal of Contemporary Spine Surgery. He is an author of over 90 original articles and 50 book chapters and has edited definitive textbooks on radiographic measurement parameters for spinal deformity and comprehensive adult and pediatric books on spinal trauma and minimally invasive spinal surgery.

“As Head of the Division of Spine Surgery, Dr. Ludwig will be assuming an important leadership role in the Department of Orthopaedics,” said Dr. Pollak, the James Lawrence Kernan Professor and Chair of the Department of Orthopaedics. “In addition to his current research efforts in the development and refinement of minimally invasive techniques for management of spinal injury, Dr. Ludwig will be working with a multidisciplinary team to develop processes to improve quality and safety in our spine surgery programs, to ensure that spine patients at University of Maryland Medical System facilities receive the best, most-effective spine care available anywhere in the world.”

Before coming to the School of Medicine, Dr. Ludwig was an Assistant Professor of Orthopaedics at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine at The Milton S. Hershey Medical Center from 1999-2001. He completed his undergraduate work at Rutgers College in New Jersey, graduating Magna Cum Laude; earned his medical degree at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, graduating first in his class and serving as President of the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society; and completed a residency in Orthopaedics at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After residency, Dr. Ludwig pursued a fellowship in spine surgery at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. He is also a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery.

“Globally, this new division will bring spinal-care research to a higher level by collaborating across the School of Medicine and the University in both clinical and academic activities,” said Dr. Ludwig of his new role. “This will be a multi-disciplinary division that will be working on the prevention of implant-related infections, as well as conducting basic science and stem-cell research.”

Dr. Ludwig added that “we have the unique opportunity to bring together leading research from our academic departments and research centers, such as the Shock Trauma and Anesthesiology Research Organized Research Center (STAR-ORC), and leading clinical care from The University of Maryland Medical System hospitals to deliver the highest level of understanding and patient care in spine and spinal cord injuries.”

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