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Dr. Brent Warner’s Approach to Care

“As an athlete, I understand the profound impact that an injury can have on a patient’s life and well-being. My goal is to return people to activity as quickly and safely as possible, whether that’s training for an ultramarathon or walking the dog around the block.”

Sports medicine care for athletes, from an athlete

Sports and medicine were an instinctive career pairing for Dr. Brent Warner. He grew up as an athlete, playing soccer and basketball as a boy and joining his junior high track and field team to compete as a runner and pole-vaulter. A competitive pole-vaulter throughout college, Warner was an academic and athletic all-American when he earned his undergraduate degree from Duke University.

“Being an athlete has been a huge part of my life and my identity,” he explains. “I had my fair share of injuries, and I understand the physical and emotional impact of having an injury that prevents you from doing something you love. Orthopedics and sports medicine give me the opportunity to work with people who want to get back to their sport, and to really help them stay active.”

Prestigious fellowship training

After medical school at the Ohio State University College of Medicine and residency at the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, Dr. Warner completed a fellowship at the prestigious Steadman Philippon Research Institute in Vail, Colorado. During his yearlong fellowship, Dr. Warner performed approximately 500 surgical procedures under the mentorship of internationally recognized surgeons in shoulder, elbow, knee, and hip surgery.

Skiing insights from Dr. Warner:

“Learning from these giants within the orthopedic world was such an amazing experience,” he says. “I was able to learn the specialized techniques these surgeons have developed, and now I can use this knowledge to treat my patients with specialized skill and a lot of attention to detail.”

Specialized sports medicine care

Dr. Warner’s surgical practice is focused on sports medicine injuries. “I treat disorders of the shoulder, elbow, hip, and knee, but I have a special interest in shoulder problems and injuries,” he explains. “The shoulder is a complicated joint. A lot of things have to work well together for the shoulder to function optimally. When a patient comes in with a painful shoulder, there’s often a diagnostic challenge in figuring out what’s really driving the problem.

“There is a common misconception that X-rays and MRIs tell the whole story. Of course, imaging is vitally important, and gives us all kinds of necessary information, but when a patient comes to see me for the first time, his or her history and physical exam is even more important. I want to know how an injury happened and what it feels like. There is a lot of subtlety that X-rays or MRIs aren’t going to show you. Physically examining the shoulder to move it and feel how the joint responds enables me to pick up those more subtle nuances.

Most rewarding part of being a physician

“My ultimate objective is achieving the best possible final outcome for my patients. Seeing people go back to the things they love to do is so gratifying for me. I’ll see patients who are just miserable because they hurt and they can’t do what they want. Then I see them after successful conservative treatment or surgery and they are strong again. They are so happy to be back to the activities they love without pain. It’s an amazingly rewarding feeling.”

Everyday spine insights from Dr. Warner:

Education

Undergraduate Studies

Duke University — Durham, NC

Medical School

The Ohio State University| College of Medicine — Columbus, OH

Residency

University of North Carolina — Chapel Hill, NC

Fellowship

The Steadman Philippon Research Institute | The Steadman Clinic — Vail, Colorado

Professional Memberships

  • The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM)
  • Arthroscopy Association of North America (AANA)
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS)
  • American Orthopaedic Association, Emerging Leaders Program
  • Alpha Omega Alpha, Honor Medical Society

Activities & Awards

  • Mpls.St.Paul Magazine Rising Star recognition: 2022
  • UNC Orthopaedics Resident Research Award: 2014
  • American Orthopaedic Association Resident Leadership Forum–attendee, 2013
  • Phi Beta Kappa National Honor Society, Duke University, 2004
  • Seven-time Varsity letterman, Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field, Duke University, 2000–2004
  • NCAA Academic All-American, Track & Field, 2004
  • NCAA Outdoor Track & Field All-American, pole vault, 200

Team Medical Coverage

  • Team Physician Coverage, USSA/United States Men’s and Women’s Alpine Ski Teams, 2014–2015
  • Team Physician Coverage, Eagle Valley High School Football, Gypsum CO, 2014
  • Team Physician Coverage, University of North Carolina Varsity Football, 2012–2013
  • Team Physician Coverage, University of North Carolina Varsity Women’s Soccer, 2013
  • Team Physician Coverage, North Carolina High School Football, 2009–2013
  • Team Physician for U.S. Ski and Snowboard Teams
  • Team Physician for East Ridge High School — Woodbury, MN

Presentations

  • Warner BT (2015). Proximal Tibiofibular Joint Instability and Treatment. Steadman Philippon Research Institute Grand Rounds, April 2015.
  • Warner BT (2013).Posterolateral Corner Injuries of the Knee. University of North Carolina Department of Orthopaedics Grand Rounds, November 2013.
  • Warner BT (2013).Surgical Treatment of Pseudoparalysis. University of North Carolina Department of Orthopaedics Grand Rounds, February 2013.
  • Warner BT (2012).Concussion in Sport. University of North Carolina Department of Orthopaedics Grand Rounds, May 2012.
  • Warner BT (2011).Musculoskeletal Ultrasound: A viable imaging alternative? University of North Carolina Department of Orthopaedics Grand Rounds, March 2011

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