UNE alum Paul Tortland, D.O., becomes first physician in the U.S. board certified in regenerative medicine.

December 17, 2015

Paul Tortland
Paul Tortland

University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine graduate, Paul D. Tortland, D.O. '91, became the first physician in the United States to become board certified in regenerative medicine by the American Academy and Board of Regenerative Medicine (AABRM). The certification exam, the first of its kind in the country, was held on Sunday, December 7, 2015 in Golden, Colorado. Thirty candidates from the United States and abroad sat for the exam.

Tortland completed the exam first, 20 minutes ahead of the next candidate. His exam was therefore the first to be scored. In addition to being the first to pass the exam, Tortland also achieved the highest score on the exam, 10 points higher than the next candidate.

Tortland is considered a leader and pioneer in the newly emerging field of regenerative medicine, which is defined as the process of replacing, engineering or regenerating human cells, tissues or organs to restore or establish normal function. In clinical use, the hallmark of treatment includes the use of adult stem cells, platelets, and adipose tissue (fat) to stimulate a natural healing. Tortland's involvement in the field has focused on the treatment of orthopedic and musculoskeletal injuries and painful conditions.

Tortland has been in practice for more then 20 years. He began incorporating regenerative medicine treatments from the beginning, performing Prolotherapy treatments for chronic sprain & strains and arthritis. The treatment involves injecting a mixture of dextrose and novocaine, which then stimulates natural healing. In 2007 he became the first physician in Connecticut to begin performing PRP, or Platelet-Rich Plasma, injections to heal arthritis, rotator cuff injuries and other chronic muscle, tendon and ligament injuries.

Tortland began utilizing adult stem cells as part of his treatment repertoire in 2008, again the first in the state to do so for orthopedic conditions, and sooner than most other physicians in the country. He obtains the stem cells from the patient's belly fat or bone marrow using gentle, almost painless, techniques.  The harvest is processed in his office while the patient waits, and then the concentrated cells are re-injected into the damaged area under ultrasound guidance. Most of his treatments involving the use of stem cells are done for people with joint arthritis, including the knee, hip & shoulder. "These treatments are wonderful alternatives for patients who do not want surgery, for those who want to put surgery off, or for those with early or mild arthritis who want to be proactive and prevent the arthritis from worsening,” said Tortland. Other conditions, such as rotator cuff tears and certain back pain, can also be treated effectively with these approaches.

Tortland remains on the leading edge of advances in Regenerative Medicine, and often is among the first physicians in the country to be introduced to new technologies and clinical treatments. In addition to his expertise in Regenerative Medicine, Tortland also is a nationally recognized expert in, and teacher of, musculoskeletal ultrasound. He was in the first group of physicians in the country to become registered in Musculoskeletal Ultrasound by the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine (AIUM).  

Tortland is an associate clinical professor of Medicine at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and holds faculty positions at numerous medical schools, including UNE COM.  He is a Fellow of the American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine, and he is board certified in sports medicine, OMM, and family practice. He lectures and teaches frequently at regional and national medical meetings on topics related to Orthopedic Medicine, Sports Medicine, and Musculoskeletal Ultrasound.  He is also a team physician at the University of Hartford.

Tortland's office is in Glastonbury, Connecticut where he specializes in sports medicine, non-surgical orthopedics, and regenerative medicine.

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