David Shapiro, MD | Cleveland Clinic Orthopaedic Surgery

I love how things work. I always say I was taking things apart when I was a little kid. Unfortunately, I didn’t learn how to put them together until I was a bit older. But in the hand everything’s very mechanical. If you learn the anatomy you can see how things work and you can almost always figure the diagnosis out based just on the anatomy. So we do nerve surgery, everything from carpal tunnel releases to nerve repairs, tendon surgery and reconstructions, fractures, broken bones, bones that have healed crooked and need to be straightened out, vascular surgery for people with vascular disorders of the upper extremity, some plastic surgery, skin grafts and flaps. So it’s actually a very broad list of things that we can do despite a very narrow anatomic field. Try to get a sense of what the problem is, why they’re here how it’s affecting their day to day life and give a list of choices that can try to make it better. One of the questions you always ask is, “What can you do today that you couldn’t do before?” And you get this list and at every visit the list is a little bit longer and this is of course very satisfying. I love building things so I have a woodshop. I have a metal shop. I build small furniture pieces. I restore old wooden metalworking tools, small ones. Admittedly most of my time is my wife and kids. I have two daughters and that’s what I do.

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