Focus on Faculty: Orthopedics

Louis F. Amorosa, MD

Louis F. Amorosa, MD

With the arrival of Dr. Louis F. Amorosa in 2018, NewYork-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital can now offer Westchester residents the same advanced, least-invasive spinal surgical techniques available at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center.

Dr. Amorosa, who specializes in complex spinal reconstruction, minimally invasive surgery, and cervical spine surgery, joins the Department of Orthopedic Surgery from Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he was Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery.

“I am excited about the challenge and opportunity to bring state-of-the-art spinal care to NewYork-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital,” says Dr. Amorosa, who also previously served as an orthopedic trauma and spine trauma surgeon at Jacobi Medical Center and Westchester Medical Center.

Dr. Amorosa earned his medical degree at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, where he was a member of Alpha Omega Alpha. He completed an orthopedic surgery residency at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia serving as chief resident and was presented with the Harrison McLaughlin Award for Excellence in Orthopedic Trauma Care. He then pursued a fellowship in orthopedic trauma at Hospital for Special Surgery, followed by a combined orthopedic and orthosurgical spine surgery fellowship at Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals and the Rothman Orthopaedic Institute.

“I try, whenever possible, to offer my patients the most minimally invasive, motion-sparing spine surgery,” says Dr. Amorosa, who is also skilled in complex pelvic and acetabular fractures, and generally performs the very complex spine and trauma cases at the Och Spine Hospital at NewYork-Presbyterian Allen Hospital. “Our goal at Hudson Valley is to offer local residents cutting-edge orthopedics and spine surgery in their own community so that they don’t have travel to New York to see experts in the field. However, if we feel that they require a higher level of complex care postoperatively, or even intraoperatively, we will transfer them to Columbia.”

Dr. Amorosa plans to partner with Nadine O. Chahine, PhD, Associate Professor of Bioengineering in Orthopedic Surgery and Biomedical Engineering. “Dr. Chahine is a prestigious researcher. Our translational research, which is in the planning stages, will focus on the causes of spinal stenosis,” he says.

Nicole S. Belkin, MD

Nicole S. Belkin, MD

In January 2019, Dr. Nicole S. Belkin was appointed Chief of Orthopedic Surgery at NewYork-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital. Dr. Belkin, an orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist in nonoperative and operative treatment of injuries and conditions affecting the knee, shoulder, and hip, brings to her new position a depth of experience and training.

After earning her medical degree from the University of Florida School of Medicine, Dr. Belkin completed her residency in orthopedic surgery at the University of Pennsylvania. She conducted laboratory research for an additional year there, winning the Orthopedic Research and Education Foundation’s Resident Clinician Scientist Award, achieving both national and international recognition. In 2016, Dr. Belkin completed a fellowship in Sports Medicine and Shoulder Surgery at Hospital for Special Surgery, gaining experience treating complex articular cartilage injuries, meniscal injury and deficiency, ligamentous injuries and patellofemoral conditions of the knee; shoulder conditions, including instability, separations, rotator cuff tears and arthritis; and femoroacetabular impingement.

Dr. Belkin, a former athlete herself, has served as an assistant team physician for the New York Giants, an associate team physician for Iona College Athletics, and an orthopedic consultant to the New York Public School Athletic League.

It was during her training at the University of Pennsylvania that she briefly gained exposure to community orthopedics as an elective and remembers “what a wonderful working environment it was.”

“Being at NewYork-Presbyterian Hudson Valley affords me the best of both worlds,” notes Dr. Belkin. “Everyone knows each other and there are more smiles and greetings in the hallway. And our orthopedic team is an extension of NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia, bringing advanced care to patients in the community. The perception I have from patients is that they appreciate the convenience and comfort of being able to obtain care that they need in a community where they’re comfortable. With this in mind, we have plans to expand our program in the coming years to ensure that every orthopedic and musculoskeletal need of the community can be addressed by our department.”

Dr. Belkin also plans to pursue research in the treatment of injuries of knee articular cartilage. “This tissue itself has no intrinsic capacity to heal, so coming up with more refined and biologically advanced treatments could have a tremendous impact on the future of a patient’s knee, limiting or eliminating disease progression and avoiding larger surgeries with more morbidity, such as knee replacement.”

Jakub Tatka, MD

Jakub Tatka, MD

“I’ve always had a passion for fixing and making things,” says Dr. Jakub Tatka, who specializes in complex adult hip and knee reconstruction and hip preservation. “My parents were both architects, and my father could fix anything. In medical school, I was open-minded, but I just loved my rotation in orthopedics, and, in particular, the hip and knee replacement experience.”

Born in Krakow, Poland, Dr. Tatka came to the U.S. at the age of three. He studied music and technology at Connecticut College, after which he earned his medical degree and completed residency training in orthopedic surgery at SUNY Stony Brook. Dr. Tatka then completed the Joel Matta Fellowship in Pelvis, Hip, and Knee Reconstruction and Preservation at the Steadman Clinic in Colorado, where he focused on anterior approach hip replacement, pelvic osteotomy and hip preservation, and knee replacement surgery.

“Dr. Matta was my mentor and arguably one of the most famous hip surgeons in the world,” says Dr. Tatka, who then went on to pursue the Bernese Hip Preservation Fellowship at Inselspital in Bern, Switzerland.

Dr. Tatka joined Columbia in November 2018 and practices primarily at NewYork-Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital, where he is focused on the operative and non-operative management of athletic injuries and arthritic, post-traumatic, and developmental disorders of the pelvis, hip, and knee. He also has a particular interest in hip preservation, leveraging special surgical techniques to treat a variety of congenital and acquired disorders in order to preserve healthy joint surfaces.

As one of the traveling physicians for the US Ski Team, Dr. Tatka has participated in training events and Olympic trials all over the world.

Dr. Tatka’s research interests center on improving the diagnosis and treatment of hip disorders and on the precision of accurate implantation of hip replacement components, with current work underway on enhancing the understanding of cup position.

“Today, with minimally invasive techniques and computer guidance we can do very sophisticated surgeries with minimal tissue dissection and trauma to the joints,” adds Dr. Tatka. “These surgeries do much more than just treat pain. They give the patient their life back to do the activities that make them happy.”