Dr. St. Louis: A Physician, Husband, Father and Friend

In my last post, History of Laser Spine Institute, I briefly mentioned Dr. James St. Louis. His contribution to Laser Spine Institute, as well as to my life has been invaluable, so I would like to tell you a bit more. During October of 2004, I met a genius doctor who gave me my life back. But more importantly, I met a man, a fabulous father,devoted husband, and a friend for life- Dr. James St. Louis, Chief Surgeon at Laser Spine Institute.

We have all heard the horror stories about doctors, especially surgeons with arrogant attitudes and poor bedside manners. You know, the evil geniuses with God complexes; not Jim St. Louis. In fact, it is not unusual to see the 2005 and 2008 Physician of the Year perform six surgeries on one afternoon, jump on a plane to see his daughter perform in a swim meet, fly home the next morning to perform more surgeries and hop another plane to visit his son at camp in North Carolina. He once told me that there were times when he would awake and be confused about what city he was in, especially during his transition from Pensacola to Tampa. As I chuckled and nodded in amazement, Jim casually replied, “Bill, I would do it all over again.”

Those conversations with Jim laid an imprint, not only on my mind, but also on my heart. To me, that was a clear demonstration of Jim’s commitment to his family and to Laser Spine Institute. Many people would be surprised to know that although Jim is an avid sports man, he would never go to an event unless he is accompanied by at least one of his kids! It is truly fascinating to watch a man, whose world revolves around his family, while he continues to commit to performing miracles every day, giving people their lives back.I must admit that at first, I found it quite amazing that Jim does such a great job of balancing his time between his family and his work. But, as I got to know him, I realized that Jim’s work is more than professional; it’s also personal. He has a personal attachment to his work and his patients. That’s what makes him such a great doctor and that is why striking that balance seems incredibly simple!

When it came to finding a doctor to perform surgery on my spine, having the Tiger Woods of spine surgery was important. I wanted the best of the best and someone in the prime of his career. I wanted someone with no lawsuits and no malpractice claims. Dr. St. Louis was the only minimally invasive spine surgeon that I could find that had such a clean record. Later, discovering that he was such a great family man revealed more about his character, but also that in a lot of ways, he was just like many of us!

Recently, Governor Charlie Crist appointed Dr. St. Louis to the Florida Board of Medicine. As you can imagine, these appointments are only given to doctors with impeccable records and sterling reputations. We are very proud of Jim and thankful for his contribution to Laser Spine Institute, but more personally, I am grateful that I am one of the many patients who got my life back because of Jim’s hard work!

Dr. James St. Louis is one of the founding physicians of Laser Spine Institute. He is a board certified orthopedic surgeon, with over 10 years of experience in minimally invasive spine surgery. Dr. St. Louis is a member of the American Medical Association and the Florida Board of Osteopathic Medicine. He is also a two- time recipient of the American Association of Physician Specialists Physician of the Year Award. Follow the link to learn more about Dr. St. Louis.

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