Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Polly Resigns from AAOS

On August 24th, 2009, The Star-Tribune, a Minneapolis, Minnesota newspaper reported that in a letter to the President of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Dr. David Polly resigned as a member of the Board of Directors. Dr. Polly cited the ongoing investigation into his consulting activities as a "unnecessary distraction" to the important efforts of the AAOS.

Dr. Polly has defended his compensation vigorously. In an interview with a prominent journalist at Orthopedics This Week, Dr. Polly defends himself by saying his oversight was an honest mistake. He is quoted as saying, "there was no intent to mislead or deceive, but there is a perception that full transparency wasn't achieved."

Dr. Polly goes on to explain that the fix would be for the Government to provide disclosure sheets to people testifying before Congress allowing them (the physicians) appropriate disclosures. Of course at a time when everyone is railing at the Government, in some respects it makes it sound as though Dr. Polly is deflecting his lack of transparency at that moment in time at the Government. If he wasn't such a savvy industry veteran, that defense would probably stand up. Yet, it is obvious as this drama plays out, surgeons like Dr. Polly and Dr Kuklo (what is it about these military doctors?) are the villains, while Senator Grassley is portrayed as the White Knight rescuing the healthcare industry from potential improprieties.

Today, as another page in the ongoing saga turns, lawyers across America are lining up to take advantage of a situation that has itself turned into a lucrative segment of the law. And we expect tort reform? So remember doctor, be transparent, don't be greedy, remember the more companies you represent the better off you will be, and don't forget whom you work for. In the end it is the patient that matters. The only question that the Spine Blogger must ask is, when standing on that podium in front of your peers, do you have the ability to differentiate between clinical marketing and clinical efficacy and that is the million dollar question? The SpineBlogger wants to know.


  1. Mr. Spine blogger,

    sorry for changing topics, but can you help me understand what the osteocel/trinity products are?

  2. Musculoskeletal Man, why the emotional supportive tone for Dr. Kuklo and the more disparaging one for Dr. Polly? Both doctors appear equally forgetful at crucial moments, and the consequences of Dr. Kuklo's lapses of memory are at least as grave as those for Dr. Polly, so they deserve equal levels of (emotional) support. It must be said though, that if one sees Dr. Polly's incredibly detailed expense reports, the memory does appear to work quite well