John Frino, MD – Pediatric Orthopaedics – Wake Forest Baptist Health
By Bryan Wright
My name is John Frino – I am an assistant
professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Wake Forest Baptist Health and my specialty is Pediatric
Orthopedics. My clinical expertise is in children’s orthopedic
surgery. The nice part about being a children’s orthopedist
is I’m really a generalist – so I get to treat children comprehensively including fractures,
injuries, congenital deformities, hip, spine, infection and so really again, I treat children
comprehensively. Orthopedics was really the specialty that
I was most drawn to so it was pretty easy for me once I decided to be an orthopedic
surgeon to decide to become a children’s orthopedic surgeon.
So at Brenner Children’s Hospital, it’s a little bit different from the children’s hospitals
that I’ve worked in during my residency as well as during my fellowship.
Those were both freestanding children’s hospitals. Brenner Children’s Hospital is really a hospital
within a hospital and so it’s really connected to our adult hospital.
The benefit of that is I still get to take care of adults and there’s no age limit and
so some of my patients who are becoming young adults and turning 18- or 21-years-old, I
don’t have to say goodbye to them – I can continue to treat them and see them in clinic.
When I was a young attending, maybe about three years out of fellowship, Dr. Powers,
who was chief resident in Neurosurgery here found out that I was doing a lot of scoliosis
surgery – he had a big interest in scoliosis surgery as well – and he was getting ready
to start his fellowship in St. Louis and so he contacted me and wanted to come in and
scrub cases with me. It was someone from another service – Neurosurgery
– came in to scrub in with me and as an attending in Orthopaedic Surgery that was sort of not
really done very often. But I invited him in. He was a wonderful doctor and he went off
to St. Louis and when he was deciding where he should go to be an attending, I said you
should come back here and we’ll build a program together and I’ll invite you in and you can
do scoliosis surgery – which was a little bit different because most places you go to
the scoliosis in children is taken care of by orthopedic surgeons traditionally and so
it’s a little bit harder for neurosurgeons to break into that field even though they
do lots of adult scoliosis and spine surgery it’s a little bit different in children.
And so when he came back on faculty we started seeing patients together, again one time a
week, we developed this service that I think is very very unique to Wake Forest Baptist
Health and Brenner Children’s Hospital where we have both a pediatric orthopedic surgeon
and a pediatric neurosurgeon operating on the spine at the same time and it’s one of
our most proud of as far as the service that we’ve developed here.