URMC Orthopaedic Surgeon Wins Prestigious Fellowship

October 04, 2011

John Elfar, M.D., in the operating room

John C. Elfar, M.D., was awarded the North American Traveling Fellowship by the American Orthopaedic Association, an honor considered to be one of the most exclusive in the field of orthopaedic surgery.

Elfar, an assistant professor of Orthopaedics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, specializes in treating hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder problems for patients of all ages. The Traveling Fellowship is awarded to young surgeons with great academic potential for national and international leadership. Elfar was one of five people selected this year.

His fellowship service begins today and continues through the month of October.  He is touring a western section of North America – including three stops in Canada and five in California – to serve as an emissary for improvement of academic orthopaedics, and to exchange clinical and scientific information.

Elfar earned bachelor degrees in electrical engineering and biomedical engineering from Johns Hopkins University, and a medical degree from Harvard Medical School. He came to Rochester for an internship and residency, and returned to URMC to practice after his training was completed. Elfar has a special interest in sports-related hand injuries and is the team hand surgeon for the University of Rochester athletic program.

One of Elfar’s mentors is Richard I. Burton, M.D., who designed an innovative reconstructive procedure for basal joint arthritis of the thumb. Known internationally as the "Burton procedure," the technique is the gold standard therapy for this condition and is taught to orthopaedic surgeons throughout the world. Burton is Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the UR School of Medicine and Dentistry.

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Leslie Orr
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