UNTHSC professor returns from Olympic adventure

Daniel Clearfield, DO, MS, recently spent an unforgettable two-weeks tending to world-class athletes at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

From Nov. 11-26, Dr. Clearfield was a volunteer sports medicine physician sharing a dormitory with Olympic weightlifters. He treated wrestlers, gymnasts, divers, bobsledders and other athletes, all while utilizing the training center’s state-of-the-art medical technology.

“It was an incredible opportunity to be able to work hands-on with so many of our country’s most talented and elite athletes,” said Dr. Clearfield, Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at UNT Health Science Center.

Dr. Clearfield (TCOM ’07, GSBS ‘07) was honored that his application was accepted by the U.S. Olympic Committee Sports Medicine Division Volunteer Program.

The program’s multidisciplinary approach allowed him to work side-by-side with physical therapists, chiropractors, athletic trainers and massage therapists. Doctors of osteopathic medicine are particularly valued in part because of the Olympic sports’ often-changing list of banned medications.

“Rather than doing a prescription for this or that, we’re able to treat them with our hands,” Dr. Clearfield said. “Having the ability to do osteopathic manipulative treatment is an invaluable asset to have in a physician’s skill set, notably in sports medicine.”

Dr. Clearfield, who has worked previously with the U.S. wrestling, judo and volleyballs teams, could next be invited to work with U.S. athletes at the 2015 PanAm Games. That’s a stepping stone to his ultimate goal of working with the U.S. team at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

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