Keck School Faculty

David L. Skaggs, MD
David L. Skaggs, MD
Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery;Director of Scoliosis and Spinal Deformity
Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery
CHL 4650 W Sunset Blvd Off Campus Los Angeles
Dr. Skaggs received his undergraduate degree from Amherst College and his medical degree from Columbia University of Physicians and Surgeons. Dr. Skaggs is on the Board of the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America, a member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, and the Scoliosis Research Society. Dr. Skaggs is the director of the Scoliosis and Spinal Deformity Program at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. Dr. Skaggs is renowned for his expertise in the treatment of children with spinal deformity, and has been featured on numerous television shows, published over 70 peer-reviewed articles and three textbooks, and has served as a visiting professor at many of the nation’s top medical schools.

: American Orthopaedic Assocation American-British-Canadian Travelling Fellowship, 2003

: Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America Traveling Fellowship, 2002

: Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America Young Investigator Award, 2000

Columbia University College of Physicians : Rosamond Kane Award, 1994

Intraoperative Hypothermia is Common, but not Associated With Blood Loss or Transfusion in Pediatric Posterior Spinal Fusion J Pediatr Orthop. 2018 Oct; 38(9):450-454. . View in PubMed

Clinically Significant Psychological and Emotional Distress in 32% of Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Patients Spine Deform. 2018 Jul - Aug; 6(4):435-440. . View in PubMed

Expert Consensus and Equipoise: Planning a Randomized Controlled Trial of Magnetically Controlled Growing Rods Spine Deform. 2018 May - Jun; 6(3):303-307. . View in PubMed

Diagnosis of Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis Is Delayed Six Months After Seeing Nonorthopedic Providers Spine Deform. 2018 May - Jun; 6(3):263-266. . View in PubMed

Comparison of Percentile Weight Gain of Growth-Friendly Constructs in Early-Onset Scoliosis Spine Deform. 2018 01; 6(1):43-47. . View in PubMed

Comparison of Percentile Weight Gain of Growth-Friendly Constructs in Early-Onset Scoliosis Spine Deform. 2018 Jan; 6(1):43-47. . View in PubMed

Comparison of Ponte Osteotomies and 3-Column Osteotomies in the Treatment of Congenital Spinal Deformity J Pediatr Orthop. 2017 Aug 02. . View in PubMed

Benign Natural History of Spondylolysis in Adolescence With Midterm Follow-Up Spine Deform. 2017 Mar; 5(2):134-138. . View in PubMed

Benign Natural History of Spondylolysis in Adolescence With Midterm Follow-Up Spine Deform. 2017 03; 5(2):134-138. . View in PubMed

Chance Fractures in the Pediatric Population are Often Misdiagnosed J Pediatr Orthop. 2016 Dec 23. . View in PubMed

Continuing Delay in the Diagnosis of Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis J Pediatr. 2016 Oct; 177:250-254. . View in PubMed

Intraoperative Hypothermia is Common, but not Associated With Blood Loss or Transfusion in Pediatric Posterior Spinal Fusion J Pediatr Orthop. 2016 Sep 03. . View in PubMed

Age at Initiation and Deformity Magnitude Influence Complication Rates of Surgical Treatment With Traditional Growing Rods in Early-Onset Scoliosis Spine Deform. 2016 Sep; 4(5):344-350. . View in PubMed

Does the Type of Metal Instrumentation Affect the Risk of Surgical Site Infection in Pediatric Scoliosis Surgery? Spine Deform. 2016 May; 4(3):206-210.. View in PubMed

Assessment of Lowest Instrumented Vertebra Tilt on Radiographic Measurements in Lenke "C" Modifier Curves Undergoing Selective Thoracic Fusion in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Spine Deform. 2016 Mar; 4(2):125-130. . View in PubMed

Continuing Delay in the Diagnosis of Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis J Pediatr. 2016 10; 177:250-254. . View in PubMed

Age at Initiation and Deformity Magnitude Influence Complication Rates of Surgical Treatment With Traditional Growing Rods in Early-Onset Scoliosis Spine Deform. 2016 09; 4(5):344-350. . View in PubMed

Management of Spinal Implants in Acute Pediatric Surgical Site Infections: A Multicenter Study Spine Deform. 2016 07; 4(4):277-282. . View in PubMed

Does the Type of Metal Instrumentation Affect the Risk of Surgical Site Infection in Pediatric Scoliosis Surgery? Spine Deform. 2016 05; 4(3):206-210.. View in PubMed

Assessment of Lowest Instrumented Vertebra Tilt on Radiographic Measurements in Lenke "C" Modifier Curves Undergoing Selective Thoracic Fusion in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Spine Deform. 2016 03; 4(2):125-130. . View in PubMed

Early-Onset Scoliosis: A Review of History, Current Treatment, and Future Directions Pediatrics. 2016 Jan; 137(1). . View in PubMed

A New Classification System to Report Complications in Growing Spine Surgery: A Multicenter Consensus Study J Pediatr Orthop. 2015 Dec; 35(8):798-803. . View in PubMed

Measurement Variability in the Evaluation of the Proximal Junction in Distraction-based Growing Rods Patients J Pediatr Orthop. 2015 Sep; 35(6):624-7. . View in PubMed

Management of the pulseless pediatric supracondylar humeral fracture J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2015 Jun 03; 97(11):937-43. . View in PubMed

Growing Rods Versus Shilla Growth Guidance: Better Cobb Angle Correction and T1-S1 Length Increase But More Surgeries Spine Deform. 2015 May; 3(3):246-252. . View in PubMed

Early pelvic fixation failure in neuromuscular scoliosis J Pediatr Orthop. 2015 Apr-May; 35(3):258-65. . View in PubMed

Cobalt Chrome Spinal Constructs Trigger Airport Security Screening in 24% of Pediatric Patients Spine Deform. 2015 Mar; 3(2):188-191. . View in PubMed

Fever is common postoperatively following posterior spinal fusion: infection is an uncommon cause J Pediatr. 2015 Mar; 166(3):751-5. . View in PubMed

Insurance status does not predict curve magnitude in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis at first presentation to an orthopaedic surgeon J Pediatr Orthop. 2015 Jan; 35(1):39-42. . View in PubMed

Foam padding in casts accommodates soft tissue swelling and provides circumferential strength after fixation of supracondylar humerus fractures J Pediatr Orthop. 2015 Jan; 35(1):24-7. . View in PubMed

A line drawn along the radial shaft misses the capitellum in 16% of radiographs of normal elbows J Pediatr Orthop. 2014 Dec; 34(8):763-7. . View in PubMed

Is There an Optimal Time to Distract Dual Growing Rods? Spine Deform. 2014 Nov; 2(6):467-470.. View in PubMed

Are Rib Versus Spine Anchors Protective Against Breakage of Growing Rods? Spine Deform. 2014 Nov; 2(6):489-492.. View in PubMed

Location of the vertebral artery at C1 in children: how far out laterally can one safely dissect? J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2014 Sep 17; 96(18):1552-6.. View in PubMed

Best Practices in Intraoperative Neuromonitoring in Spine Deformity Surgery: Development of an Intraoperative Checklist to Optimize Response Spine Deform. 2014 Sep; 2(5):333-339. . View in PubMed

Development and initial validation of the Classification of Early-Onset Scoliosis (C-EOS) J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2014 Aug 20; 96(16):1359-67. . View in PubMed

Deep Surgical Site Infection Following 2344 Growing-Rod Procedures for Early-Onset Scoliosis: Risk Factors and Clinical Consequences J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2014 Aug 06; 96(15):e128. . View in PubMed

Iatrogenic nerve injuries in the treatment of supracondylar humerus fractures: are we really just missing nerve injuries on preoperative examination? J Pediatr Orthop. 2014 Jun; 34(4):388-92.. View in PubMed

A classification of growth friendly spine implants J Pediatr Orthop. 2014 Apr-May; 34(3):260-74. . View in PubMed

Chronic lack of sleep is associated with increased sports injuries in adolescent athletes J Pediatr Orthop. 2014 Mar; 34(2):129-33. . View in PubMed

Mechanisms and risk factors of brachial plexus injury in the treatment of early-onset scoliosis with distraction-based growing implants J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2013 Nov 06; 95(21):e161. . View in PubMed

Bilateral proximal femur and femoral head regrowth following proximal femoral resection in a child with spastic cerebral palsy J Pediatr Orthop B. 2013 Sep; 22(5):437-9. . View in PubMed

Building consensus: development of a Best Practice Guideline (BPG) for surgical site infection (SSI) prevention in high-risk pediatric spine surgery J Pediatr Orthop. 2013 Jul-Aug; 33(5):471-8. . View in PubMed

Abduction bracing after Pavlik harness failure: an effective alternative to closed reduction and spica casting? J Pediatr Orthop. 2013 Jul-Aug; 33(5):536-9.. View in PubMed

Congenital Cervicothoracic Scoliosis Treated with Hemiepiphysiodesis and Placement of Distraction-Based Instrumentation: A Case Report JBJS Case Connect. 2013 Jun 12; 3(2 Suppl 8):1-6. . View in PubMed

Evaluating the extent of clinical uncertainty among treatment options for patients with early-onset scoliosis J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2013 May 15; 95(10):e67. . View in PubMed

Intensive care unit versus hospital floor: a comparative study of postoperative management of patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2013 Apr 03; 95(7):e40. . View in PubMed

Approach to the pediatric supracondylar humeral fracture with neurovascular compromise Instr Course Lect. 2013; 62:429-33. . View in PubMed

Improvement of Kyphoscoliosis in a 9-Year-Old Using Growth Modulation With a Posterior Tether: A Case Report Spine Deform. 2013 Jan; 1(1):79-83. . View in PubMed

Evidence-based review: management of open pediatric fractures J Pediatr Orthop. 2012 Sep; 32 Suppl 2:S123-7. . View in PubMed

Access to care for the adolescent anterior cruciate ligament patient with Medicaid versus private insurance J Pediatr Orthop. 2012 Apr-May; 32(3):245-8. . View in PubMed

A new surgical technique for the treatment of supracondylar humerus fracture malunions in children J Child Orthop. 2011 Aug; 5(4):305-12. . View in PubMed

Complications of growing-rod treatment for early-onset scoliosis: analysis of one hundred and forty patients J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2010 Nov 03; 92(15):2533-43. . View in PubMed

Complications of ketorolac use in children undergoing operative fracture care J Pediatr Orthop. 2010 Oct-Nov; 30(7):655-8. . View in PubMed

Growing rods for spinal deformity: characterizing consensus and variation in current use J Pediatr Orthop. 2010 Apr-May; 30(3):264-70. . View in PubMed

Access to care for children with fractures J Pediatr Orthop. 2010 Apr-May; 30(3):244-7. . View in PubMed

Distal humerus osteotomy for supracondylar fracture malunion in children: a study of perioperative complications Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). 2010 Jan; 39(1):22-5. . View in PubMed

A new classification system predictive of complications in surgically treated pediatric humeral lateral condyle fractures J Pediatr Orthop. 2009 Sep; 29(6):602-5. . View in PubMed

Efficacy of intraoperative neurologic monitoring in surgery involving a vertical expandable prosthetic titanium rib for early-onset spinal deformity J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2009 Jul; 91(7):1657-63. . View in PubMed

Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor of the lumbar spine Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). 2009 May; 38(5):E89-92. . View in PubMed

Complications with flexible nailing of femur fractures more than double with child obesity and weight >50 kg J Child Orthop. 2009 Feb; 3(1):53-8. . View in PubMed

Aprotinin in pediatric neuromuscular scoliosis surgery Eur Spine J. 2008 Dec; 17(12):1671-5. . View in PubMed

Incidence of occult fracture in children with acute ankle injuries J Pediatr Orthop. 2008 Jul-Aug; 28(5):500-1. . View in PubMed

How safe is the operative treatment of Gartland type 2 supracondylar humerus fractures in children? J Pediatr Orthop. 2008 Mar; 28(2):139-41.. View in PubMed

Health-related quality of life in children with thoracic insufficiency syndrome J Pediatr Orthop. 2008 Mar; 28(2):239-43. . View in PubMed

Abduction pillow immobilization following hip surgery: a welcome alternative for selected patients J Child Orthop. 2007 Nov; 1(5):299-305. . View in PubMed

Cell Saver: is it beneficial in scoliosis surgery? J Child Orthop. 2007 Oct; 1(4):221-7.. View in PubMed

Compartment syndrome of the thigh in an infant: a case report J Orthop Trauma. 2007 Sep; 21(8):587-90. . View in PubMed

Loss of pin fixation in displaced supracondylar humeral fractures in children: causes and prevention J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2007 Apr; 89(4):713-7. . View in PubMed

Insurance status and delay in orthotic treatment in children J Pediatr Orthop. 2007 Jan-Feb; 27(1):94-7. . View in PubMed

Developmental dysplasia of the hip Am Fam Physician. 2006 Oct 15; 74(8):1310-6. . View in PubMed

Causes of intoeing gait in children with cerebral palsy J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2006 Oct; 88(10):2175-80. . View in PubMed

Consultation with the specialist: adolescent idiopathic scoliosis Pediatr Rev. 2006 Aug; 27(8):299-306. . View in PubMed

Back pain and backpacks in school children J Pediatr Orthop. 2006 May-Jun; 26(3):358-63. . View in PubMed

Access to orthopaedic care for children with medicaid versus private insurance: results of a national survey J Pediatr Orthop. 2006 May-Jun; 26(3):400-4. . View in PubMed

Comparison of the volume of scoliosis surgery between spine and pediatric orthopaedic fellowship-trained surgeons in New York and California J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2005 Dec; 87(12):2687-92. . View in PubMed

Access to urologic care for children in California: Medicaid versus private insurance Urology. 2005 Jul; 66(1):170-3. . View in PubMed

Botulinum toxin as an adjunct to serial casting treatment in children with cerebral palsy J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2004 Nov; 86-A(11):2377-84. . View in PubMed

Changes in pelvic rotation after soft tissue and bony surgery in ambulatory children with cerebral palsy J Pediatr Orthop. 2004 May-Jun; 24(3):278-82. . View in PubMed

Effect of surgical delay on perioperative complications and need for open reduction in supracondylar humerus fractures in children J Pediatr Orthop. 2004 May-Jun; 24(3):245-8. . View in PubMed

Lateral-entry pin fixation in the management of supracondylar fractures in children J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2004 Apr; 86-A(4):702-7. . View in PubMed

Less access to care for children with Medicaid Orthopedics. 2003 Dec; 26(12):1184, 1186. . View in PubMed

Delayed neurologic injury due to bone graft migration into the spinal canal following scoliosis surgery Orthopedics. 2003 May; 26(5):515-6. . View in PubMed

Comparison of proximal and distal rotational femoral osteotomy in children with cerebral palsy J Pediatr Orthop. 2003 Mar-Apr; 23(2):150-4. . View in PubMed

Fracture stability after pinning of displaced supracondylar distal humerus fractures in children J Pediatr Orthop. 2002 Sep-Oct; 22(5):697; author reply 697-8. . View in PubMed

Growth arrest of the distal radius following a metaphyseal fracture: case report and review of the literature J Pediatr Orthop B. 2002 Jan; 11(1):89-92. . View in PubMed

Differentiation between bone infarction and acute osteomyelitis in children with sickle-cell disease with use of sequential radionuclide bone-marrow and bone scans J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2001 Dec; 83-A(12):1810-3. . View in PubMed

Access to orthopedic care for children with medicaid versus private insurance in California Pediatrics. 2001 Jun; 107(6):1405-8. . View in PubMed

Dysplasia epiphysealis hemimelica of the acetabulumA report of two cases. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2000 Mar; 82(3):409-14. . View in PubMed

Iatrogenic intraspinal epidermoid tumor: two cases and a review of the literature Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2004 Jan 01; 29(1):E15-8. . View in PubMed

Increased Lumbar Lordosis and Smaller Vertebral Cross-sectional Area are Associated with Spondylolysis Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2017 Oct 31. . View in PubMed

Complications of halo use in children Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2009 Apr 15; 34(8):779-84. . View in PubMed

Lateral Femoral Cutaneous Nerve Palsy After Spinal Fusion for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2016 Oct 01; 41(19):E1164-7. . View in PubMed

Lengthening of dual growing rods and the law of diminishing returns Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2011 May 01; 36(10):806-9. . View in PubMed

Management of infection after instrumented posterior spine fusion in pediatric scoliosis Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2007 Nov 15; 32(24):2739-44. . View in PubMed

Growing rod fractures: risk factors and opportunities for prevention Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2011 Sep 15; 36(20):1639-44. . View in PubMed

Complications of posterior iliac crest bone grafting in spine surgery in children Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2000 Sep 15; 25(18):2400-2. . View in PubMed

Is research presented at the scoliosis research society annual meeting influenced by industry funding? Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2008 Sep 15; 33(20):2208-12.. View in PubMed

Comparison of outcomes after posterior spinal fusion for adolescent idiopathic and neuromuscular scoliosis: does the surgical first assistant's level of training matter? Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2014 Apr 15; 39(8):648-55.. View in PubMed

Dermal Discolorations and Burns at Neuromonitoring Electrodes in Pediatric Spine Surgery Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2017 Jan 01; 42(1):20-24. . View in PubMed

Clay-shoveler's fracture equivalent in children Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2012 Dec 15; 37(26):E1672-5. . View in PubMed

Cobalt chromium sublaminar wires for spinal deformity surgery Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2006 Sep 01; 31(19):2209-12. . View in PubMed

Accelerated Discharge Protocol for Posterior Spinal Fusion Patients With Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Decreases Hospital Postoperative Charges 22 Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2017 Jan 15; 42(2):92-97. . View in PubMed

Increased Lumbar Lordosis and Smaller Vertebral Cross-Sectional Area Are Associated With Spondylolysis Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2018 06 15; 43(12):833-838. . View in PubMed

Don't you wish you had fused to the pelvis the first time: a comparison of reoperation rate and correction of pelvic obliquity Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2018 Oct 05. . View in PubMed

Limited Sequence MRI's for Early Onset Scoliosis Patients Detected 100% of Neural Axis Abnormalities While Reducing MRI Time by 68 Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2018 Dec 11. . View in PubMed

Comparison of complications among growing spinal implants Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2010 Nov 01; 35(23):2091-6. . View in PubMed

Growing rods for scoliosis in spinal muscular atrophy: structural effects, complications, and hospital stays Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2011 Jul 15; 36(16):1305-11. . View in PubMed

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