Physician Focus: Dr. Mitchell Kuhl, D.O.

 

When Dr. Kuhl, one of our orthopedic surgeons on our general orthopedics staff, was asked what sets St. Cloud Orthopedics apart from other orthopedic practices, his answer was simple: specialty care. Because we have fellowship-trained surgeons in most of the major subspecialties of orthopedics, we have become the referral source for general orthopedic surgeons in Central Minnesota. He also noted how we have embraced technology as part of our daily practice to advance our surgical treatment and improve outcomes.

“Computer assisted surgery for hip fractures is one of our latest advancements in healthcare technology,” said Dr. Kuhl. “This has helped to improve hardware placement and prevent complications. St Cloud Orthopedics has done more of these procedures than any other group in the world (yes, it’s true!).”

A study just completed by Dr. Kuhl shows that the computer-assisted surgery accurately guides surgical placement of the screws in the treatment of hip fractures, and creates better results for patients who undergo this kind of procedure. He plans to present his findings at orthopedic conferences over the next year.

ph_cycle-kuhlPrevention is an element of healthcare that Dr. Kuhl is openly passionate about. His best advice? “Stay active. Keep your weight under control. Perform weight bearing exercise (walking or light aerobics are perfect examples) on a regular basis.” He shares these tips on keeping muscles conditioned because those who do are able to recover faster in the event of an orthopedic injury. By contrast, inactive people take a significantly longer time to return to their original level of function after an injury or accident. That means more time in rehabilitation programs, and more time out of work.

In cases when injuries do occur, Dr. Kuhl urges orthopedic patients to remember to control swelling, because that’s what most injury symptoms are related to. He says it’s best to lay on your back with your injured extremity above the level of your heart, then apply ice regularly. Patients can also consult with their provider about the use of compression wraps and stockings to help ease symptoms and heal faster.

Because St. Cloud Orthopedics partners with St. Cloud Hospital, a level 2 trauma center, Dr. Kuhl pointed out how the most advanced care is readily available close to home. “Central Minnesotans can rest assured that they have access to equally-advanced orthopedic trauma care as those who live in major metropolitan areas,” he said.

Dr. Kuhl completed his undergraduate degree at Washington University, St. Louis, MO and his medical degree from Des Moines University – Osteopathic Medical Center. He also continued on with his residency training at Ohio University – St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center, Toledo, OH and completed a Trauma Fellowship at Orthopaedics Indianapolis – Methodist Hospital, Indianapolis, IN. He joined our group in 2007.

Outside of the clinic, Dr. Kuhl plays golf and tennis, but most enjoys spending time with his family. He and his wife have three daughters between the ages of 5 and 9. After moving to the area in 2007 with no other family or friends in the area, he was pleased at how quickly he felt at home in St. Cloud and loves being involved in the community.