New Orleans Living Magazine
By: Maria Muro
Whether you are a professional athlete or you only play sports only on the weekends, Dr. Michael Hartman can help heal your injury and help you get back in the game. Board-certified in orthopaedic surgery and fellowship-trained in Sports Medicine, he has dedicated his life to helping both athletes and novices who suffer from injuries related to sports and other types of physical exercise.
For more than 15 years, Dr. Hartman has treated all types of sports injuries. “There are so many different types of musculoskeletal injuries related to physical activity and sports,” he explains. “There are muscle sprains and strains, ligament and tendon tears, dislocated joints and fractured bones. As orthopaedic doctors, we help maintain the health of the musculoskeletal structure, ensuring that broken bones and other injuries heal correctly and in a timely fashion. When necessary, we will intervene in the healing process through surgical and medical procedures to ensure that the body’s skeleton and muscles can function as they were originally intended.”
Dr. Hartman is the assistant team orthopaedic surgeon for the New Orleans Saints. In addition, he leads the sports medicine division of the LSU Healthcare Network and serves as associate professor and residency program director of orthopaedic surgery at the LSU School of Medicine.
“As one of the team doctors, you need to be familiar with players and their medical histories,” Dr. Hartman says. “We need to be knowledgeable about how the body responds to the demands and the required skills of playing each type of sport, and to prevent, diagnose and manage all sport injuries as well as disorders, dysfunctions and disease processes.”
Dr. Hartman earned his medical doctorate at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in Shreveport. After completing his residency training at the world-renowned Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., he continued with a fellowship in orthopaedic sports medicine at the prestigious American Sports Medicine Institute in Birmingham, Ala.
In addition to sports medicine, Dr. Hartman performs general orthopaedic surgery, arthroscopic surgery, trauma/fracture surgery, rotator cuff repair, shoulder instability, knee ligament (ACL) reconstruction and cartilage injuries. “My goal is to provide the best orthopaedic surgical care possible through the utilization of leading edge techniques and proven traditional methods,” he says.
“Arthroscopic surgery has been around for years, but, with newer technology and increasing minimally invasive techniques, patients are bouncing back from surgery quicker. I love orthopeadics and cannot imagine myself doing anything else, whether it’s surgery, clinicals or training new doctors in the residency program.”
On what made him want to become a doctor: A former three-sport athlete, Dr. Hartman was first interested in becoming a doctor when he entered college. Witnessing fellow athletes sustain injuries, he was intrigued with the medical aspect involved in getting athletes back to playing sports. Orthopaedic surgery was an eventual natural fit, allowing him to combine his love of medicine and sports into everyday practice.
His best advice for patients: “Orthopaedic and sports injuries are very common,” he says. “Patients often initially seek care in emergency rooms and urgent care centers. After appropriate stabilization, many patients do not seek the advice of a sports medicine expert. As the initial pain subsides, some athletes may get back to playing sports without proper care and management, risking further injury to their body. Proper treatment is critical for these types of injuries.”
On patient education: Dr. Hartman believes in educating each patient and involving them in their treatment plans to ensure that their orthopaedic and sports injuries are successfully resolved. “Athlete or not, everybody wants to get back to their daily routine in a hurry. So if we can teach them how not to re-injure themselves, we are on the right track to full healing.”
Michael W. Hartman, MD
LSU Healthcare Network
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
200 West Esplanade, Suite 500
Kenner, LA 70065
Medical School: LSU School of Medicine
Residency: Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Fellowship: American Sports Medicine Institute, Birmingham, AL