“Fortunately, there’s been a huge leap forward in the overall durability of knee and hip implants.”
A native of Massachusetts, Dr. Brian Burroughs earned a PhD and had a career in engineering before becoming interested in medicine. After earning his doctorate, he became involved in orthopedic research at Mass General, studying hip and knee implants and prostheses, where he also became exposed to the clinical side of orthopedics. “After a while, I came to the realization that orthopedic medicine was a far more interesting career for me, so I made the decision to go to medical school and become an orthopedist.”
As an orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Burroughs specializes in doing knee and hip replacements as well as revision surgery to existing implants. “I think I gravitated to orthopedics and joint replacement because in many ways I still consider myself an engineer,” he explains. “A lot of the patients I see have arthritic hips or knees that have degraded over time. For many patients joint replacement surgery is the best option, but I spend a lot of time educating patients that surgery should be the final choice after they have exhausted other non-surgical treatment.”
Dr. Burroughs believes that knee and hip replacements are expected to go up dramatically in the next decade. “Clearly, people are living longer and don’t want to slow down. Fortunately, there’s been a huge leap forward in the overall durability of knee and hip implants. As a result, they function better and last much longer – and that really benefits patients over time.”
According to Dr. Burroughs, joint replacement has been shown time and time again to improve people’s quality of life. “For many patients, it’s a life-altering event. They have gone down this path of worsening pain and function, and after a joint replacement, it really changes their life for the better. As a doctor, it’s very gratifying to be a part of a transformation like that.”
When he is not busy helping patients, Dr. Burroughs enjoys spending as much time as possible with his wife and three children. He also enjoys doing woodworking projects in his basement workshop.
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