David W. Polly, Jr., MD's portrait
David W. Polly, Jr., MD
Professor and Chief of Spine Surgery
University of Minnesota, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
Minneapolis, MN

About David W. Polly, Jr., MD

David W. Polly, Jr., MD is Professor and Chief of Spine Surgery in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and currently holds the James W. Ogilivie Chair at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. In addition, he is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery.

Dr. Polly's areas of expertise includes pediatric and adult orthopaedics, and his clinical interests are complex spinal conditions such as scoliosis, spinal tumors, and degenerative spinal disease. He is well-known nationally and internationally for his work in biomechanics and scoliosis outcomes research. 

He received his medical degree from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Polly completed an internship and orthopaedic residency at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, also located in Bethesda. Dr. Polly advanced his education and training by completing a Spine Fellowship at the University of Minnesota.

Articles Written by David W. Polly, Jr., MD

Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction Medications

There are numerous medications you can take to help you manage the symptoms of sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction, such as pain and stiffness. Which medications should you take for SI joint pain?

Surgery for Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction

Surgery for sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction is rare, but if non-surgical treatments, such as exercise and medications, haven’t worked for you, you may need surgery to help you manage the pain.

Symptoms Related to Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction

One of the main symptoms of sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction is low back pain. But with SI joint pain, you can also have pain in your hips and buttocks. Learn about other common symptoms of SI joint dysfunction.

Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction Causes

Arthritis and pregnancy are common causes of sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction. But what else can cause SI joint pain? This article explains other possible sacroiliac joint dysfunction causes.

Exercise and Physical Therapy for Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction

Exercise and physical therapy can significantly help you manage sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction.

Case Studies Presented by David W. Polly, Jr., MD

Ankylosing Spondylitis with Thoracic Fracture

Do You Fix Both the Fracture and the Deformity?
Presented by: D. Polly, Jr. MD
The patient is a 70-year-old male with chronic back pain and worsening trouble standing up. He has known long-standing ankylosing spondylitis, and he was referred to a spine surgeon after a non-union at a thoracic fracture site was seen. Do you fix the fracture alone, or fix the deformity, too?

Degenerative Disc Disease in a 30 Year-old Female

Presented by: D. Polly, Jr. MD

Patient History This 30 year-old female presented with low back pain that started 6 months ago. Activity makes her pain worse. She reports back pain as 8/10 and thigh pain as 5/10 without pain distal to the knee. Her Oswestry Disability Index is 50%. The patient does not have a history of trauma

Adjacent Segment Degeneration after Previous Decompression and Fusion

Presented by: D. Polly, Jr. MD

Patient History The patient is a 59 year-old male, non-smoker, and of acceptable weight level. The patient presented in 2006 with severe, “unacceptable” low back pain, and early fatigue marked by diminished endurance when walking or standing. The patient’s Oswestry Disabilit

Financial Disclosures

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To help achieve this goal, SpineUniverse requires all authors, editors, and reviewers to disclose any financial relationships or affiliations they have with companies whose products or services may be mentioned in the content they author, edit, or review.

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Author's Statement

I, or an immediate family member, have a financial interest(s) or affiliation(s) with the following commercial companies whose products and / or services may be mentioned in the materials I have authored, edited or reviewed for presentation on Vertical Health, LLC’s websites.

Disclosed Relationships

Grants/Research Support
Department of Defense, Scoliosis Research Society, Chest Wall and Spine Deformity Research Foundation
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