The Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation appointed Samantha Smith, MD, as assistant professor effective Sept. 9.
Dr. Smith joins the department as a non-operative specialist, in both the pediatrics and sports medicine sections. A former All-American college athlete and competitive rower, Dr. Smith says she suffered her own share of sports injuries and wanted to help other athletes find ways to return to competition. The frustration with being sidelined from the sports she loved became a motivation to pursue orthopaedics, she says.
“I felt a personal connection to this type of medicine,” Smith says. “That and I really love teaching. I didn’t have a lot of exposure to this field when starting out in medicine. I chose to pursue fellowship training in sports medicine because I wanted to advance my knowledge in these areas while being able to teach about musculoskeletal conditions to other primary care doctors.”
Smith is familiar to Yale: she completed her residency here in internal medicine and pediatrics after completing medical school at the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine. She spent an additional year at Yale as a pediatric chief resident, before completing her primary care sports medicine fellowship at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York.
Part of the advantage of working at an academic medical center is that physicians are encouraged to work as a team to provide patients with the best care. Our mission also includes educating patients about the conditions they are facing, Dr. Smith says. That communication is a critical component in the healing process, she says. “When someone is suffering knee or hip pain, helping them understand what’s causing that pain and then working with them to develop a treatment plan makes them feel like they are a part of their healing process.”
Outside of her formal training, Dr. Smith has provided medical coverage for the Lake Placid Ironman and the New York City Marathon, in addition to serving as an assistant team physician for the New York Mets and New York Giants.
When she’s not treating patients, she can be found exploring hiking trails in the Greater New Haven area with her husband and her dog.
Dr. Smith will be seeing patients in New Haven and can be reached by calling 1-877-YALEMDs or at Samantha.firstname.lastname@example.org