About the Department

The Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at VCU School of Medicine provides care for a wide range of orthopedic conditions and diseases. Our surgeons and residents practice out of five sites in the Richmond area, including a Level I trauma center. 

Mission & Vision

Our vision is to be the premier orthopaedic provider in the central Virginia region. 

Our mission is to provide superb clinical care to our patients, educate the next generation of orthopaedic surgeons and expand the orthopaedic knowledge base through basic, clinical and translational research.



The first iteration of our department was the Division of Orthopaedic Surgery at MCV, created as part of the Department of Surgery in 1938. Nearly 60 years later, the division became the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery under the leadership of its first chair, Dr. John A. Cardea.  

Upon Dr. John Cardea‚Äôs retirement, Dr. Robert Adelaar served as the department chair from 2001 to 2015. Dr. Stephen Kates became chair in 2015, and under his leadership the department has grown that cover all orthopaedic subspecialties in eight different facilities in Richmond and the surrounding areas.  

Our Faculty

With approximately 30 expert physicians on our faculty, we have expertise in a wide variety of areas and treatments, including sports medicine, trauma, urgent care, pediatric ortho, orthopaedic oncology, osteoporosis and nerve injury. 

Meet our team 


Our Musculoskeletal Infection, Inflammation, and Injury (MI3) Laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and research is guided by world-class scientists. There are ample opportunities for students, residents, and fellows to explore basic, translational, and clinical ideas to help drive future innovations in orthopaedic surgery.

Learn more about our research

Patient Care

We strive to provide the highest level of patient care reflective of the sophisticated techniques and cutting-edge research offered at VCU Medical Center. Our expert physicians and nurse managers use a multidisciplinary approach to provide patients with the most appropriate and responsive treatment.

Learn about patient services