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Rick Wright, MD
Jerome J. Gilden Distinguished Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Executive Vice Chairman, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

VideoPhysician Profile Video

Clinical Specialty

Sports Medicine

Clinical Interests
Dr. Wright’s practice centers on the evaluation and treatment of sports and related injuries, with emphasis on the use of arthroscopy in treating problems involving the knee, shoulder, foot, and ankle. He has special interests in knee ACL and revision ACL injuries, meniscus injuries, articular cartilage injuries of the knee, shoulder instability and rotator cuff disease. Dr. Wright also performs primary total knee replacements.

Research Interests
Research interests include knee ligament healing and clinical problems involving the shoulder. He is a founding member of MOON (Multi-center Orthopaedic Outcomes Network) a multi-center sports medicine group studying knee ACL injuries and shoulder injuries with a prospective database. He is a member of ROCK (Osteochondritis Dissecans Study Group). He is principal investigator and Washington University is the coordinating center for MARS (Multi-center ACL Revision Study).

Dr. Wright earned his medical degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and followed with a residency in Orthopedic Surgery from Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is fellowship trained in sports medicine from the Minneapolis Sports Medicine Center, where he participated in the care of professional and collegiate teams. Dr. Wright has a strong interest in athletic team coverage and serves as the head team physician for the St. Louis Blues.


  Listed in Best Doctors in America, 2007 – Present (Best Doctors, Inc.)
1993 Regen Award for Outstanding Chief Resident Paper, Vanderbilt Orthopaedic Society
2002 The Cabaud Memorial Award, The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
2002 Jerome J. Gilden Distinguished Physician Award for Compassionate Care, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Excellence in Teaching (previously the 4.8 Resident Teach Award), Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
2004, 2009 Palma Chironis Award for Teacher of the Year, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
2006 Lee T. Ford MD Award for Academic Achievement; Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
2011 Charles S. Neer Award - Effectiveness of Physical Therapy in Treating Atraumatic Full Thickness

Rotator Cuff Tears: A Multi-Center Prospective Cohort Study. The American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons
2011 NCAA Award - Previous Knee Surgery is a Risk Factor for Knee Articular Cartilage Lesions Among College Football Athletes at the NFL Combine. The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
2012 Ann Doner Vaughan Kappa Delta Award, Orthopaedic Research Society – Prognosis and Predictors of ACL Reconstructions using the MOON Cohort: A Model for Comparative Effectiveness Studies
2013 WUSM 2013 Distinguished Educator Award
2013 Neer Award – Predictors of Success of Nonoperative Treatment for Full-Thickness Rotator Cuff Tears: A Multicenter Cohort Study.  The American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons
2013  Best Paper Award Shoulder Program Oral Presentation – Defining Indications for Rotator Cuff Repair: Predictors of Failure of Nonoperative Treatment of Chronic, Symptomatic, Full-Thickness Rotator Cuff Tear. 12th International Congress for Shoulder and Elbow Surgery
 2013 American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery Director-Elect

Board Certifications
American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, 1996; American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery Subspecialty Certificate in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine, 2007.

Medical Degree
University of Missouri – Columbia

Orthopaedic Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Sports Medicine, Minneapolis Sports Medicine Center

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Dr. Wright's Sports and ACL Injuries Blog

Washington University and St. Louis Children's Young Athlete Center

St Louis Blues

Washington University Athletics

American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine

Dr. Wright's Videos

St. Louis Blues Team Physician

ACL Injuries

Dislocated Shoulder Treatment


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