Michael L. Schmitz, MD

Michael Schmitz

Undergraduate: Boston University, 1986
Medical education: Boston University School of Medicine, MD, 1990
Residency: Boston University School of Medicine, Orthopaedic Surgery, 1995
Fellowship: Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery, 1996

Dr. Schmitz is the Chief of Orthopaedics at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. He also serves as the Co-Director of the Spasticity and Limb Deficiency clinics at Children's as well as the Medical Director of the Fracture Program.

Dr. Schmitz’s area of clinical expertise is complex spinal deformity, congenital and traumatic limb deficiencies, cerebral palsy and complex fractures. He is an innovator in the use of intraoperative navigation for spine surgery and non-operative treatment of scoliosis as well as curve modulation technologies including Veptr and MAGEC rods for early onset scoliosis. He holds a patent for a widely used spinal deformity correction device. Dr. Schmitz is an active member of the Neuromuscular Program at Children's and a leader of the spasticity clinic. He has led symposia at national and international meetings on limb deficiency topics.

Dr. Schmitz also works with a mission organization called Childspring International. This organization brings children and adolescents with various orthopaedic conditions from underprivileged countries to the U.S. for treatment. Dr. Schmitz is the affiliated surgeon faculty at the Center for Pediatric Locomotion Sciences at Georgia State University. The center's goal is to perform innovative, interdisciplinary research to improve the lives of children and adolescents with mobility disorders such as limb deficiencies or gait abnormalities. He also participates in the Clinical Research Oversite Committee and is a member of the review team for Children's Center or Pediatric Healthcare Technology Innovation at Georgia Institute of Technology.

Away from the hospital, he enjoys wake boarding, mountain biking, XTERRA racing and snowboarding.

Clinic locations

Areas of focus

  • Spinal care
  • Limb deformity and deficiency
  • Orthopaedic manifestations of neuromuscular disease 

Clinical interests

  • Complex spinal deformities, including early onset scoliosis
  • Limb deficiency
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Orthopaedic trauma

Research interests

  • Brace treatment for idiopathic scoliosis
  • Use of an evidence-based pathway for post-operative management after spinal fusion for scoliosis
  • Evaluation of femur fractures in children less than three years of age
  • Optimization of care fracture pathways for supracondylar and femur fractures in children and adolescents


Professional affiliations

  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • American Medical Association
  • Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America
  • Scoliosis Research Society
  • Association of Children's Prosthetics and Orthotics Clinics
  • Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society