Physician Profile: Dr. Thomas Amalfitano, The Center for Joint Surgery & Sports Medicine

Published July 25, 2017

At The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics, we are passionate about the community. As we continue to expand into new communities in the Mid-Atlantic and increase our offerings in the neighborhoods that we’ve always served, we look for physicians who have the same values as we do – to provide the best possible orthopaedic care, conveniently located in our patients’ communities. We recently brought on three new physicians at the Center for Joint Surgery and Sports Medicine care center – Drs. Thomas Amalfitano, Richard Milford and Michael Stowell – who, collectively, have more than 80 years of experience providing orthopaedic care, right in Hagerstown.

Over the next few months, we’ll be introducing you to each of these physicians so you can better get to know about the expertise they bring to CAO. In the first of this series, we spoke with Dr. Amalfitano, a sports medicine physician.

You joined The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics a few months ago. Can you tell us a little bit about your experience with CAO so far?

The experience has been great so far. Culturally, this couldn’t be a better fit. We’re all working hard to take care of our patients in the region. CAO is an outstanding organization and in a very short period of time, we’ve come to feel like we really belong here. CAO is a cutting edge company and we are happy to be a part of it. I have personally been in practice in Hagerstown for 25 years, and it’s great to continue working with patients in this community.

You specialize in a variety of areas including sports medicine, joint replacement and foot and ankle surgery. Why did you choose to specialize in these areas?

I mostly focus on lower extremity issues, but I do treat other areas as well. I have an affinity for sports medicine. I was a college football player and wrestler, which is how I became interested in orthopaedics in the first place. I had an injury in college, and my orthopaedic surgeon who took care of me gave me the idea to pursue orthopaedics. I am one of the team physicians for the Washington Nationals and I work with their minor league affiliate. I care for the players here in Hagerstown and I travel to Florida for Spring Training. It is my responsibility to help keep the players healthy throughout the season.

I do also perform a lot of joint replacement surgeries. I try to maintain a blend of young and older patients with varying needs. I serve athletes ranging all ages, including high school students and pediatric patients. We do our very best to take care of everyone in the community who comes to us regardless of their age and injury. Between my partners and I, we treat almost everything, and for those areas we don’t specialize in, we arrange for their treatment where it can be done best.  

Tell us more about your experience working with the Washington Nationals and other sports teams. What types of injuries do you treat in these cases?

The great thing about these top-level athletes is that they are actually not getting injured all that frequently. Of course you hear about injuries but generally they’re very healthy individuals. They do develop common athletic injuries, such as muscle pulls and tendonitis, for example, but they are typically well-maintained. There are only a handful of doctors in the country who care for professional athletes on a surgical level. The medical team I am a part of is on the front lines, seeing the players each day and looking at minor issues to make sure they don’t develop into something more serious. They ultimately end up with highly specialized physicians for surgery, and I am happy to be a part of the group caring for these fine athletes.

What are the most common injuries and conditions you treat?

I see a lot of ACL tears, knee and hip replacements for the treatment of arthritis, and hip, tibia and ankle fractures – a lot of bread and butter orthopaedics. We cover the Meritus Medical Center emergency room, a level three trauma center. Our practice is a bit more varied than those in a tertiary care center. I would say that the cases we treat are diversified enough to keep the practice interesting each day, but we’re specialized enough to do what we do very well.

What made you choose to go into medicine in the first place?

I always had an affinity for math and science, and enjoyed talking with my pediatrician as a child. During my residency, I had the privilege of treating my middle school gym teacher, and he reminded me that in seventh grade, I had said that I was going to be a doctor. As an athlete – and having experienced an athletic injury during play myself – orthopaedics was my calling from an early age.

What are your interests outside of work?

I have six children, so I’ve been involved with coaching dozens of teams from soccer to softball and baseball. I’m an avid golfer, so now that my children are older, I’m concentrating on my golf game more. I enjoy gardening and family time.  

Dr. Thomas Amalfitano is a sports medicine surgeon serving the Hagerstown community. His practice includes fracture treatment, hip, knee, foot, ankle and shoulder problems. He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins University and State University of New York at Stony Brook Medical School, where he remained to complete his orthopaedic residency his last year as Chief Orthopaedic Resident. He joined The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics at its Center for Joint Surgery & Sports Medicine care center in spring 2017.