Introducing Trevor Wahlquist, M.D. [Video]
Meet the Expert: Doctor Bio Video Series
Introducing Trevor Wahlquist, M.D., a fellowship-trained spine specialist at Summit Orthopedics in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota. He specializes in back and neck surgery.
Meet Trevor Wahlquist, M.D.
Dr. Wahlquist’s approach: “Ensuring people are living healthy and active lifestyles is important to me. I strive to work together with patients to find non-operative and operative solutions for their pain, getting them back to the activities and the people that matter most to them.”
Dr. Wahlquist’s education: Aftera earning his Science in Kinesiology bachelors degree At the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis and Masters of Science in Human Nutrition at Columbia University in New York, New York, Dr. Wahlquist completed his medical studies at the University of Minnesota’s School of Medicine. Later he trained as a resident of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and he went on to complete a Spine Surgery fellowship at New England Baptist Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts.
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My name is Trevor Wahlquist, and I’m an orthopedic spine surgeon. So I grew up on a small farm in western Wisconsin; it was a dairy farm. And that was always an important part of my upbringing. It taught me a lot of significant values, values of hard work and values of continuing to push through adversity. And so that was definitely an important part of my premedical training. And one of the things that I learned during that time is that there are patients that are out there that need to get back to that sort of career. And those are the types of patients that I want to help. I tore my ACL as a freshman in high school. And that’s the first time I was introduced to orthopedic surgery. I was fascinated at the idea that you could get someone back to that level of function that they were at prior to their injury, and was immediately hooked at that point. However, I was actually drawn more to the physical therapy aspect initially. I thought that the recovery process and the amount of time you get to spend with patients was really unique in that. So, I went into a physical therapy track. And then once an undergraduate and I was doing some of the coursework, that’s when I got captured into some of the sciences and some of the more complicated courses required for medical school. And that’s when I was, like, this is what I want to do. So, I take a very conservative approach to all of my patients. And the first thing that I think of is, what is the least invasive way that I can get this patient back to their key function, what they want to get back to. And that includes all nonoperative approaches, including physical therapy, over-the-counter medications, having them undergo injections, and then, of course, always you have to keep in mind that there’re sometimes patients that just need surgery. They need it fixed. I like to look at that sort of a comprehensive approach in managing all patients from the very beginning. Well, with what free time I have, I really like to spend time with my three kids and my wife. And that’s the biggest thing that I use for my time outside of this. I also live on a small farm in Wisconsin, and spending time out there with them, farming, raising kids. That combination is really the key thing. But I also really enjoy exercise, working out, playing football, wrestling, and all of those sorts of things that I get to do with my family. The thing that gets me up in the morning is the opportunity to meet new people, see them at their very worst: the reason that they’re coming to me is because they’re in pain, or because they’ve lost some sort of function. And seeing them at their very worst, being able to meet them in that sort of condition, and then help to walk them through their options in how they can bounce back from that sort of condition – whether that’s through the help of my sort of surgical procedure, whether that’s a less aggressive approach and nonoperative way. So, that’s what gets me going is the idea of getting people back to work, getting people back to their activities that really gets them up in the morning.
“Ensuring people are living healthy and active lifestyles is important to me. I strive to work together with patients to find non-operative and operative solutions for their pain, getting them back to the activities and the people that matter most to them.”
Knowing what to expect can make a first visit for back pain just a little more comfortable.
Dr. Wahlquist explains how herniated disc symptoms are treated.
Dr. Wahlquist explains the distinction between “minimal access surgery” and “minimally invasive surgery.”