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Adler Orthopedic Society

The Adler Orthopedic Society was established in 2011 to honor the work and legacy of Dr. Federico Adler. The mission of the society is to provide mentorship to those medical students at the University of Kansas School of Medicine interested in orthopedic surgery, as well as current KU orthopedic residents.

The Adler Society works in coordination with the current School of Medicine academic societies with an emphasis on career development in orthopedics and sports medicine education. It is open to all medical students, but particularly those in the 3rd and 4th years. The society also invites membership to graduates from the KU Orthopedic Surgery Residency Program, current residents, as well as orthopedic faculty. Residents and faculty are encouraged to present and serve as mentors.

Dates and topics for upcoming meetings:

  • October 2017 - Applying/interviewing for orthopedic residencies (Lied Auditorium)
  • November 2017 - Cast lab (Cast Room, 2nd Floor, Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Bldg.)
  • Thursday, January 25, 2018 - Injections (Cast Room, 2nd Floor, Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Bldg.)
  • Thursday, March 29, 2018 - Physical Exams (TBA)

Dr. Federico Adler

F AdlerDr. Adler lived a remarkable life. Born in Austria in 1929, he and his family escaped in 1938 just after the Nazi invasion and Kristallnacht. His extended family was destroyed. His parents settled in Quito, Ecuador. In the following 17 years Dr. Adler completed his medical studies and became medical director of a small rural public health clinic, performing surgeries, delivering babies and practicing general medicine.

In 1955 Dr. Adler, with his wife Betty and two young daughters, moved to Kansas City where he joined the Orthopedic Surgery Residency Program at the University of Kansas Medical Center. Following a brief stint on the faculty he was in private practice for 30 years, becoming Chief of Staff at Menorah Medical Center and caring for thousands of grateful patients. For the next 13 years of his "retirement" he practiced at the Veterans Administration Hospital, mentoring orthopedic residents and working with medical students. 

In 2006 Dr. Adler returned to his academic home at the University of Kansas Medical Center and pursued two lines of original research. One was aimed at better understanding the pathophysiology ARDS/Fat Embolism syndrome. He had original ideas about possible new drug therapies. He and his team had published two papers and submitted a third. The second was aimed at identifying an inexpensive carrier for osteogenic therapy to fracture and arthrodesis sites. This was proving to be the harder study, but progress was being made. Initiating and conducting original bench research after 40 plus years of clinical practice put Dr. Adler in a unique category. Dr. Adler passed away quite suddenly in February of 2011.

Dr. Adler was a world traveler, having visited every continent and the Arctic Circle. Also an avid mountaineer, he climbed several major peaks including Kilimanjaro, Fuji, Elbrus, Cotopaxi and Chimborazo.

Dr. Adler was a doctor's doctor and an inspiration to all. In 2007 he established the Betty and Fred Adler Resident Award Endowment at the Kansas University Endowment Association. Each year the orthopedic resident who has performed the most original research or made the most original contribution is recognized. In every sense Dr. Adler was a renaissance man . . . a gentleman, scholar and loyal friend. His legacy lives on now through family, friends, colleagues, students and the Adler Orthopedic Society.

Last modified: Jan 28, 2020