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Paul David Sponseller, M.D.

Photo of Dr. Paul David Sponseller, M.D.

Chief, Division of Pediatric Orthopaedics

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery


Expertise: Achondroplasia, Blount's Disease, Cerebral Palsy, Clubfeet, Fractures, Hip Dislocations, Hip Dysplasia, Kyphosis, Leg Length Inequality, Marfan Syndrome, Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedics, Osteogenesis Imperfecta, Osteomyelitis, Pediatric Spinal Deformity, Scoliosis, Skeletal Dysplasias, Spina Bifida, Spondylolisthesis, Spondylosis more

Research Interests: Marfan Syndrome; Pediatric Spinal Deformity; Bladder exstrophy; Pediatric skeletal trauma

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Johns Hopkins Outpatient Center
Appointment Phone: 443-997-2663

601 N. Caroline St.
5th Floor
Baltimore, MD 21287 map
Fax: 410-502-3944


Dr. Paul Sponseller is a professor of urology and orthopaedic surgery at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. His areas of clinical expertise include pediatric spine disorders, cerebral palsy, clubfeet, hip dislocations and hip dysplasia.

Dr. Sponseller serves as chief of the Division of Pediatric Orthopaedics at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center.

Dr. Sponseller received his B.S. from the University of Michigan. He earned his M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School. He completed his residency at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics and performed a fellowship in pediatric orthopaedic surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital of Harvard Medical School. More recently, he earned both an M.S. degree in business of medicine and an M.B.A. at the Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Sponseller joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 1986.

Dr. Sponseller's research interests include Marfan syndrome, pediatric spinal deformities, pediatric skeletal trauma and bladder exstrophy.

Dr. Sponseller is the research committee chair for the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America, the deputy editor for pediatrics for The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery and a member of the board of directors for the Scoliosis Research Society. He is a staff physician at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and a consulting physician at Mount Washington Pediatric Hospital.

Honored on several occasions for his excellence in teaching and research, Dr. Sponseller was named Outstanding Teacher by the Union Memorial Orthopaedic Program and was twice awarded Teacher of the Year in Orthopaedic Surgery by the Johns Hopkins Hospital. He also received the Yamaguchi Award for Best Paper in Pediatrics by the American Urological Association, as well as the Arthur H. Huene Memorial Award for career research by the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America.

Dr. Sponseller has traveled to Guyana, South America, on three occasions to volunteer as a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon for Project Dawn while simultaneously teaching medical students, fellows and residents. He has published more than 100 scientific papers and has written or contributed to numerous books, book chapters and articles. more


  • Chief, Division of Pediatric Orthopaedics
  • Sponseller Professor of Pediatric Orthopaedics
  • Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Professor of Urology



  • MD, University of Michigan Medical School (1980)


  • University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics / Orthopaedic Surgery (1985)


  • Children's Hospital / Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery (1986)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery / Orthopaedic Surgery (1989)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Sponseller’s research is primarily clinical and focuses on genetic disorders, spinal deformity and trauma. His goal is to put clinical decision making on a scientific footing. His current projects include: outcomes of spinal deformity care in cerebral palsy, Loeys-Dietz syndrome and Marfan syndrome; understanding skeletal development and degeneration in a mouse model of Marfan syndrome; prevention of infection in spinal deformity; and improving pelvic fixation.

His research goals are to: (1) define the natural history of skeletal features of Marfan syndrome; (2) understand the basic science of the Marfan skeletal phenotype; (3) improve skeletal treatment in osteogenesis imperfecta; (4) advance the treatment of pediatric spinal deformity; and (5) improve the care of pediatric skeletal trauma.

Clinical Trial Keywords

Growing Spinal Deformity

Selected Publications

View all on Pubmed

Stroh DA, Sullivan BT, Shannon BA, Sponseller PD. Treatment of a Pediatric T-type Intercondylar Humerus Fracture With Hybrid Percutaneous Pinning and External Fixation. Orthopedics. 2017 Jun 6:1-3. doi: 10.3928/01477447-20170602-05.

Jain A, Modhia UM, Njoku DB, Shah SA, Newton PO, Marks MC, Bastrom TP, Miyanji F, Sponseller PD. Recurrence of Deep Surgical Site Infection in Cerebral Palsy After Spinal Fusion Is Rare. Spine Deform. 2017 May;5(3):208-212. doi: 10.1016/j.jspd.2016.12.004.

Bian Q, Ma L, Jain A, Crane JL, Kebaish K, Wan M, Zhang Z, Edward Guo X, Sponseller PD, Séguin CA, Riley LH, Wang Y, Cao X. Mechanosignaling activation of TGFβ maintains intervertebral disc homeostasis. Bone Res. 2017 Mar 21;5:17008. doi: 10.1038/boneres.2017.8. eCollection 2017.

Minsk MK, Venuti KD, Daumit GL, Sponseller PD. Effectiveness of the Rigo Chêneau versus Boston-style orthoses for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis: a retrospective study. Scoliosis Spinal Disord. 2017 Mar 20;12:7. doi: 10.1186/s13013-017-0117-z. eCollection 2017.

Dua K, Stein MK, O'Hara NN, Brighton BK, Hennrikus WL, Herman MJ, Lawrence JT, Mehlman CT, Otsuka NY, Shrader MW, Smith BG, Sponseller PD, Abzug JM. Variation Among Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgeons When Diagnosing and Treating Pediatric and Adolescent Distal Radius Fractures. J Pediatr Orthop. 2017 Feb 27. doi: 10.1097/BPO.0000000000000954.

Activities & Honors


  • Clinical Teacher of the Year, James Buchanan Brady Urological Institute, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2013
  • Top Docs,, Baltimore Magazine, 2013
  • Best Paper, Fourth International Congress on Early-Onset Scoliosis, 2010
  • Hero with a Heart Award, National Marfan Foundation, 2006
  • Yamaguchi Award for Best Paper in Pediatrics, American Urological Association, 2005
  • Arthur H. Huene Memorial Award, Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America, 2005
  • Teacher of the Year, Orthopaedic Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, 2001
  • Antoine Marfan Award, National Marfan Foundation, 1998
  • Teacher of the Year (first year award given), Orthopaedic Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, 1993
  • Outstanding Teacher, Union Memorial Orthopaedic Program, 1992
  • Russell S. Hibbs Award for best clinical paper, Scoliosis Research Society, 1986
  • Alpha Omega Alpha, University of Michigan, 1980
  • Phi Beta Kappa, University of Michigan, 1976
  • 2017 Baltimore Magazine Top Doctor


  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • American Orthopaedic Association
  • International Rett Syndrome Association
  • Maryland Orthopaedic Association
  • National Marfan Foundation
  • Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation
  • Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America
  • Scoliosis Research Society

Professional Activities

  • Board of Directors, Scoliosis Research Society
  • Clinical Advisory Board, Cornelia deLange Syndrome Association
  • Deputy Editor for Pediatrics, The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery
  • Professional Advisory Board, National Marfan Foundation
  • Research Committee Chair, Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America
  • Presidential Line, Scoliosis Research Society

Videos & Media

Skeletal Reconstruction | Owen's Story

Recent News Articles and Media Coverage

Transformative Technology At Hopkins Allows Boy With Scoliosis To Live Normal Life | CBS Baltimore (November 2017)

Cannulated Lag Screws Superior to Pins | Orthopedics This Week (January 2017)

5 Facts about Scoliosis Every Parent Should Know | Johns Hopkins Medicine (October 2015)

Getting Ahead of the Curve: A Fresh Take on Scoliosis | Physician Update (April 2014)

When the Scoliosis Patient has FOP | Johns Hopkins Medicine (December 2015)

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