Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 3-1-2008


It is the authors' final version prior to publication in Clinical Orthopaedics and related Research Volume 466, Issue 3, March 2008, Pages 561. The published version is available at . DOI: 10.1007/s11999-007-0100-8. Copyright © Springer Inc..


My first meeting with Dr. DePalma was in 1957 as an intern in his office on the 6th floor of the Curtis Clinic. He and I spoke for a while about the residency and he looked at me and said “you know you are going to be 33 years old before you make a plug nickel.” I replied, “well I don’t make any money now, so what is the difference?” He laughed and I got the residency. In the next two years, I spent many hours in the operating room with Dr. DePalma and learned quickly how skilled a surgeon he was. He was a master technician: he knew where to put his incision; he was kind to soft tissue; he worked quickly, resulting in minimal blood loss. He did surgery of the spine, hip, knee, shoulder, foot, ankle, and hand. Well before the advent of sports medicine, he performed surgery on the Philadelphia Phillies Baseball team. He was the true general orthopedist.

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