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Penn State team physician to be honored by Philadelphia Sports Medicine Congress

Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli will be the honored guest at next week's event in Center City.

Penn State team physician to be honored by Philadelphia Sports Medicine Congress

Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli, Penn State Director of Athletic Medicine, talks about football coach Joe Paterno´s recovery from Sunday´s leg surgery during a news conference on Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2006 in State College, Pa. Paterno was injured during the Wisconsin game on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2006. Penn State plays Temple, at home, this Saturday. (AP Photo/ Pat Little)
Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli, Penn State Director of Athletic Medicine, talks about football coach Joe Paterno's recovery from Sunday's leg surgery during a news conference on Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2006 in State College, Pa. Paterno was injured during the Wisconsin game on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2006. Penn State plays Temple, at home, this Saturday. (AP Photo/ Pat Little)

Before Adam Taliaferro became an inspirational story for patients with spinal cord injuries, his story appeared headed for a tragic ending. Thanks to his determination and the support of people like Penn State director of athletic medicine Wayne Sebastianelli, M.D., Taliaferro turned tragedy to triumph.

Next Friday, June 6, the duo will be reunited at the 15th Philadelphia Sports Medicine Congress, to be held at the National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 S. Independence Mall East, Philadelphia. Dr. Sebastianelli will be presented with the Joe Torg Award, while Taliaferro will serve as the event’s keynote speaker.

Taliaferro was a Penn State freshman when he was injured in a game against Ohio State in September 2000. Initially given only a miniscule chance of walking again, Taliaferro’s inspirational recovery took place right here in Philadelphia at Magee Rehab.

During Adam’s darkest days, Dr. Sebastianelli was there for him every step of the way—travelling from State College to visit Adam in Philadelphia at least once a week.  

It’s that commitment to his patients and profession that made Dr. Sebastianelli a natural choice for the 2014 Joe Torg Award, created to honor individual orthopaedic surgeons primarily in the greater Philadelphia area who devote their careers to the care of athletes, who participate in the educational process and who have made significant contributions to the body of knowledge of orthopaedics.

“Adam’s case is just one example of Dr. Sebastianelli going above and beyond for his patients,” says Justin Shaginaw, M.P.T., A.T.C., Sports Doc panelist and Course Director for the Sports Medicine Congress.

Shaginaw says there was no formal plan to have Dr. Sebastianelli and Taliaferro both on hand, but admits that the reunion seems poetic.

“Dr. Joe Torg was sort of the grandfather of sports medicine,” explains Shaginaw, “developing the physician/athletic trainer relationship between himself and Ted Quedenfeld.”

That relationship, Shaginaw continued, is paramount to the successful practice of sports medicine. Not coincidentally, a top athletic trainer in the area is recognized each year with receipt of the Ted Quedenfeld Award. This year’s recipient is Tanya Dargusch, the head athletic trainer at Washington Township High School since 1988. Over the years, Tanya has worked with the United States Olympic teams through the USOC, traveling internationally with women's team handball and women's volleyball.

Other speakers will include James Bradley, M.D., head orthopaedic surgeon for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Dr. Bradley recently published an article on quantifying the duration of hamstring injuries in NFL players through the use of MRI. Other presentations will focus on swimming, hockey, running and general conditioning. A full list of presenters and topics is available at phillysmc.org.


Read more Sports Doc for Sports Medicine and Fitness.
Robert Senior Event coverage, Sports Doc contributor
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Kelly O'Shea Sports Medicine & Fitness Editor, Philly.com
Brian Cammarota, MEd, ATC, CSCS, CES Partner at Symetrix Sports Performance
Desirea D. Caucci, PT, DPT, OCS Co-owner of Conshohocken Physical Therapy, Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist
Michael G. Ciccotti, M.D. Head Team Physician for Phillies & St. Joe's; Rothman Institute
Julie Coté, PT, MPT, OCS, COMT Magee Rehabilitation Hospital
Peter F. DeLuca, M.D. Head Team Physician for Eagles, Head Orthopedic Surgeon for Flyers; Rothman Institute
Joel H. Fish, Ph.D. Director of The Center For Sport Psychology; Sports Psychology Consultant for 76ers & Flyers
R. Robert Franks, D.O. Team Physician for USA Wrestling, Consultant for Phillies; Rothman Institute
Ashley B. Greenblatt, ACE-CPT Certified Personal Trainer, The Sporting Club at The Bellevue
Eugene Hong, MD, CAQSM, FAAFP Team Physician for Drexel, Philadelphia Univ., Saint Joe’s, & U.S. National Women’s Lacrosse
Martin J. Kelley, PT, DPT, OCS Advanced Clinician at Penn Therapy and Fitness, Good Shepherd Penn Partners
Julia Mayberry, M.D. Attending Hand & Upper Extremity Surgeon, Main Line Hand Surgery P.C.
Jim McCrossin, ATC Strength and Conditioning Coach, Flyers and Phantoms
Kevin Miller Fitness Coach, Philadelphia Union
Heather Moore, PT, DPT, CKTP Owner of Total Performance Physical Therapy, North Wales, Pa.
David Rubenstein, M.D. Team Orthopedist for 76ers; Main Line Health Lankenau Medical Center
Robert Senior Event coverage, Sports Doc contributor
Justin Shaginaw, MPT, ATC Athletic Trainer for US Soccer Federation; Aria 3B Orthopaedic Institute
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