Duke DPT Alumni travel to Rwanda with the Kefa Project


By Steven Higbie, DPT

Red dirt, deep squats, and Rwandan smiles. These are just some of the memories for 5 Duke DPT alumni (Dylan Elliot, ’15; Chelsea Wolfe, ’15; Kaitlyn Schlueter, ’16; Kim Kurtz, ’16; Steven Higbie, ’16) who recently traveled to Kigali, Rwanda, for 2 weeks with the Kefa Project. 

The Kefa Project serves to transform the lives of the most vulnerable Rwandan children through participation in sports, education, vocational training, and discipleship. While in Kigali, the DPT team partnered with director, Brian Beckman, and his staff of coaches to implement injury prevention and management within the project. Hundreds of athletes were screened via the Functional Movement Screen to identify ububabare (pain) and faulty movement patterns. Each team was given a set of tailored corrective exercises to prevent future injury while individuals with pain were treated on-site.
During their time in Kigali, the DPT team was also involved in teaching coaches and injury prevention specialists concepts including return to play criteria and acute pain management. The team also spent 2 days training physiotherapists at the Rwandan Football Federation (FERWAFA), covering rehabilitation standards such as fracture identification, concussion management, and joint mobilizations.
The trainings provided by the team will serve to enhance injury management in Rwanda, where access to medical care is limited and missing games equates to vulnerable children losing the opportunity to experience life transformation. Duke DPT is hopeful to continue their relationship with the Kefa Project as they join together in seeing injuries prevented and lives redeemed in Rwanda.

Duke Hand Surgery Performs First Hand Transplant in North Carolina

Duke's first hand transplant is performed on May 27, 2016. Led by surgeon Dr. Linda Cendales, two teams worked to attach a donor hand and forearm onto the left arm of Rene Chavez, 54. Chavez, who lives in Laredo, Texas, lost his hand in an accident when he was four-years-old. Here Dr. Cendales changes dressings on Thursday, June 2, 2016. Shawn Rocco/Duke Health

Photo by Shawn Rocco/Duke Health

The Duke Hand Surgery team, comprised of orthopaedics, plastics, and surgery team members Drs. David RuchMarc RichardSuhail MithaniDetlev Erdmann, and Linda Cendales performed the first hand transplant in North Carolina, attaching the limb to a 54-year-old patient from Laredo, Texas, whose hand was severed in a childhood accident.

After meticulous planning, the highly complex, 12-hour procedure was performed May 27, 2016, by the team of surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, operating room staff and technicians.

Duke is one of only about 10 hospitals in the U.S. that has performed a hand transplant. The surgery is difficult, involving an intricate process of connecting bone, blood vessels, muscle, nerve, tendons, and skin. Matching the limb from a deceased donor is also complex, as is the control of rejection, adding to the rarity of the procedure.

Watch video animation of hand transplant procedure.

Read more at:

Doctors at Duke perform NC’s first hand transplant, WRAL

Duke Doctors Perform State’s First Hand Transplant, WTVD (also ran on Yahoo and ABC stations throughout US)

Duke Health performs first hand transplant in the state, WNCN

Duke Doctors Perform First Hand Transplant in NC, TWC News

Texas Man Gets First Hand Transplant Done in North Carolina, AP/ABC News (carried widely in Texas and NC)

Laredoan Receives Hand Transplant, KGNS (Laredo, TX)

Drs. Leversedge, Nickel, Crosmer, and Richard published in Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

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Ultrasonography-guided de Quervain Injection: Accuracy and Anatomic Considerations in a Cadaver Model

Leversedge, Fraser J. MD; Cotterell, Ilvy H. MD; Nickel, Brian MD; Crosmer, Megan MD; Richard, Marc MD; Angermeier, Eric MD

Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons June 2016 Vol. 24 – Issue 6: p 399–404

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Fraser Leversedge, PGY-4 resident Dr. Brian Nickel, PGY-5 resident Dr. Megan Crosmer, and Dr. Marc Richard had their article, “Ultrasonography-guided de Quervain Injection: Accuracy and Anatomic Considerations in a Cadaver Model,” published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Their study discusses how ultrasonography-guided de Quervain injection improves injection accuracy through the visualization of compartmental anatomy and needle placement and may improve clinical outcomes by minimizing complications associated with extra-compartmental injection. Continue reading

Carol-Ann Nelson, PT, DPT, founder of nonprofit organization, Destination Rehab, has been awarded a seed grant from The Pollination Project

Carol-Ann-Nelson-Adventure-Based-RehabCarol-Ann Nelson, PT, DPT (Duke DPT Class of 2013), Founder and Executive Director of Destination Rehab, has been awarded a seed grant from The Pollination Project. Destination Rehab is an adventure based rehabilitation for people with neurologic disabilities, based in Bend, Oregon. They take their participants into the community to practice real-life skills while enjoying challenging outdoor activities. Greater confidence, community integration, and quality of life are achieved through functional training in shared public spaces.  Participants are challenged to learn physical and communication skills that break down barriers between them and new experiences, adventures and a fuller richer life. Continue reading

Please welcome Steven Z. George, PT, PhD, to the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

Steve Evelyn IMG_5616We are honored and delighted to announce that Steven Z. George, PT, PhD, has joined Duke Orthopaedics as Professor and Vice Chair of Clinical Research and Director of Musculoskeletal Research for the Duke Clinical Research Institute.  Steve trained at West Virginia University (BS in Physical Therapy), the University of Pittsburgh (MS in Orthopedic Physical Therapy and PhD in Rehabilitation Science) and the University of Florida (Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Pain Research and Rehabilitation Outcomes).  Steve worked clinically in the beginning of his career, but has focused on research over the past 15 years. Steve is an active member of the American Physical Therapy Association, American Pain Society, and International Association for the Study of Pain; often attending annual conferences and serving on committees.  Continue reading

Corrie Odom, PT, DPT, elected to the office of Vice President of the APTA Education Section

Corrie J Odom, Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Therapy

Corrie Odom, PT, DPT, Associate Professor and Director of Clinical Education in the Duke DPT Division, has been elected to the office of Vice President of the APTA Education Section.  Dr. Odom has been actively engaged in leadership activities of the American Physical Therapy Association and Education Section since 2004.  As a Section Member, she served on the CSM Conference Program Planning Committee from 2004-2009, Nominating Committee  from 2006-2008, and Co-Chair of the Clinical Education Special Interest Group (CESIG) from 2010-2014.  As the American Council of Academic Physical Therapy (ACAPT) was forming, Corrie was actively engaged with the Education Section and ACAPT leaders to ensure that physical therapy clinical educators would have a significant voice in physical therapy education. The newly forming ACAPT National Consortium of Clinical Educators is a tangible result of Corrie’s passion and commitment to strengthening partnerships between stakeholders in academic and clinical physical therapy.

Dr. Odom is recognized as a strong advocate and leader in physical therapy education and among clinical educators. As Vice President of the Education Section, Corrie will serve on the Executive Board and Board of Directors for the Education Section for two years, 2016-2018.

Matthew J. Hilton, PhD, published in the Journal of Cell Science

We are excited to announce that work from the lab of Matthew J. Hilton, PhD, was recently published in the Journal of Cell Science and was a highlighted article in the June issue by the editors:

HES1 and HES5 – cartilage development double act

The Notch signalling pathway is a known regulator of various aspects of skeletal development. Some members of the HES and HEY families of transcription factors can mediate specific aspects of Notch function in certain systems, but it is unknown whether any of these Notch effectors can regulate processes that are involved in cartilage development. In their article on page 2145, Matthew Hilton and colleagues use specific HES and HEY gain- or loss-of-function approaches to investigate the relevance of these factors in cartilage biology. Continue reading

Chad E. Cook PT, PhD, MBA, FAAOMPT, Keynotes Conference in Dubai

Picture3We are excited to announce that Chad E. Cook, PT, PhD, MBA, FAAOMPT, was chosen as the keynote speaker at the 5th Biennial Emirates Physiotherapy Conference, which took place May 19-20, 2016, in Dubai. His talks were entitled, “Pros and Cons of Clinical Prediction Rules,” and “Differential Diagnosis of Musculoskeletal Disorders.” Please enjoy photos taken at the conference below Continue reading

Twenty-sixth Annual Duke Hand Club James R. Urbaniak Visiting Professor, Scott H. Kozin, MD


From May 23-25, 2016, we were delighted and honored to have Scott H. Kozin, MD, Chief of Staff at Shriners Hospitals for Children – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, join us as the Twenty-sixth Annual Duke Hand Club James R. Urbaniak Visiting Professor. He gave two talks: “Pediatric Tendon Transfers” and “Pediatric Nerve Injuries.” Continue reading