Pediatric Orthopedics

Turn to Essentia Health's pediatric orthopedists for comprehensive bone, joint, and muscle care for your child. You can count on us to treat a wide range of injuries and conditions so your child can stay as active as possible. Pediatric orthopedic services are available in Minnesota and North Dakota.

What’s a Pediatric Orthopedist?

A pediatric orthopedist is an orthopedic doctor with specialized training in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting bones, joints, and muscles in children. These experts understand how musculoskeletal conditions can impact growing bodies. They provide comprehensive care including nonsurgical treatments, minimally invasive procedures, and surgery.


See the full list of conditions we treat, and select a condition to find providers and locations near you.

Team-Based Care

Your child’s pediatric orthopedist works with other caregivers to provide high-quality care that’s personalized to your child’s unique needs. Depending on your child’s condition, their health care team may include:

Specialty Orthopedics Clinics

Enjoy the convenience of seeing your child’s entire orthopedic care team during one visit. Ask about our pediatric orthopedic specialty clinics for neuromuscular (NMS) disorders and spina bifida.

Advanced Treatments

Your child can benefit from the use of advanced technology in the hands of compassionate experts. Essentia’s pediatric orthopedic team has the training to use new techniques and tools that can increase safety and reduce side effects compared to traditional methods.

Scoliosis Correction

If your child has severe early onset scoliosis—a curve in the spine—they may be a candidate for MAGEC (MAGnetic Expansion Control). With this technology, doctors use magnets to adjust a rod that slowly straightens your child’s spine. Adjustments are painless, noninvasive, and done on an outpatient basis. That means your child needs fewer surgeries and less time in the hospital.

Medical Insight: Magnetic Technology Video Transcript

A gradient blue featuring several Essentia Health logos appears. Text, Medical Insight.

SPEAKER: Welcome to Medical Insight, a weekly health care feature brought to you by the experts at Essentia Health.

Medical Insight host, Maureen Talarico, speaks to the camera.

MAUREEN TALARICO: Today on Medical Insight, we talk with pediatric orthopedic surgeon Dr. David Gordon about a new procedure featuring magnetic technology available for children in the Northland.

Dr. David Gordon, pediatric orthopedic surgeon, speaks to the camera. He wears a white coat, and sits near a full-scale model of a human spine.

DR. DAVID GORDON: Magnetic technology is a newer technology where we have rods that will distract or lengthen within the spine of a young child to help correct their scoliosis. When an external magnet is applied over the skin of the patient, centered over where the magnet within the rod is, the two magnets will work in conjunction with one another to drive the gears within the rod, which lengthens the rod, hence lengthening the spine with growth. MAUREEN TALARICO:

An animation depicts the technology, called Magec, being inserted into the spine, as well as the straightening that ensues after treatment.

Next, Dr. Gordon explains who could benefit from magnetic technology and how it can improve their scoliosis treatment.

Dr. Gordon views the curved spine of a patient through films on a computer display.

DR. DAVID GORDON: The ideal candidate for this magic rod would be a child, usually under the age of 10, with a progressive scoliosis that has been worsening in spite of treatment with a brace or cast. The benefit of this magic rod is that the rod is inserted into the patient in a single procedure.

A still animation depicts a child lying on their stomach, with a health provider placing the adjusting device on their back.

The lengthening events then occur in the office as an outpatient as an office visit. It only takes a few seconds to lengthen the rod. We plan these every three months or so. It does not hurt. The child has none of the risks of anesthesia, the fear of hospitalization, an increase-- or an increased risk of infections. The course of these treatments typically extend two, three, four, or even more years, until the child is developed adequately that we can safely fuse their spine. MAUREEN TALARICO: Similar magnetic rods are used in the legs, with the femur and tibia bones, if there is a difference in a child's leg length. SPEAKER: For medical insight, Maureen Talarico. SPEAKER: To learn more about this topic, call our experts at 768-3107.

Text, Medical Insight. Phone number, 218-786-3107. Website, essentia health dot org. The Essentia Health logo appears, consisting of three leaves in a circle. Text, Essentia Health. Here with you.

Family-Centered Care

Take part in your child’s treatment plan and care at your comfort level. Rest assured that Essentia’s team will provide support, answer questions, and work to find out what’s most convenient for your family. Your child’s health care team may recommend additional community resources that may benefit you and your child, such as transportation and therapy services.


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