Karl E. Rathjen, M.D., Assistant Chief of Staff;  President, Scottish Rite Hospital Foundation at Scottish Rite for Children

Karl E. Rathjen, M.D.

Assistant Chief of Staff

Karl E. Rathjen, M.D., is an assistant chief of staff and pediatric orthopedic surgeon at Scottish Rite for Children and sees patients at our Dallas campus. He also serves at the organization's Foundation President. 


  • Scoliosis and Spine Disorders
  • Lower extremity reconstruction in patients with neuromuscular and syndromic diagnoses 

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For more information, visit our Patient Ratings page.

"Dr. Rathjen is [our] family’s hero! He made it possible for our daughter to live pain-free, maximize her independence and – most importantly to her – to wear pretty shoes. We can never thank him enough."

  • Scottish Rite for Children
  • Children’s Health Dallas
  • Parkland Health & Hospital System
  • UT Southwestern Medical Center
  • Cook Children’s Medical Center - Prosper


  • The University of Texas, Tau Beta Pi
  • UT Southwestern Medical Center, Alpha Omega Alpha


  • UT Southwestern Medical Center General Surgery


  • UT Southwestern Medical Center Orthopaedic Surgery


  • Children’s Hospital of San Diego, University of California, San Diego Pediatric Orthopaedics

  • Alpha Omega Alpha, 1989
  • University of Texas College of Engineering, Outstanding Student, Runner-Up, 1986
  • University of Texas Cactus Yearbook Goodfellow, 1986
  • Phi Gamma Delta Educational Foundation Graduate Fellowship, 1986

  • American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, 1998; recertified, 2019

  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons 
  • Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America 
    • Development Committee, 2011-2014; chair, 2012 
    • Quality, Value and Safety Committee, 2011-2013
    • Public Education and Media Relations Committee, 2011-2014 
    • COUR Committee, 2010-2011 
    • Advocacy Committee, 2008-2010; chair, 2010 
    • Trauma Committee, 2004-2006 
  • Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) 
    • Development Committee, 2008-2011 
    • Bylaws Committee, 2011-2012; chair, 2015
    • Morbidity and Mortality Committee, 2011-2015
    • Governance Council, 2014-2015, 2018-2019
    • Health Policy, 2018-2019
  • American Orthopaedic Association 
  • The Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction Society of North America (ASAMI-NA) 
    • Immediate past president, July 2017-July 2018
    • President, 2016-July 2017
    • Board of Directors, 2010-2018
  • American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine 
  • Pediatric Trauma Society, 2011-2014
  • Spina Bifida Association of America 
    • Professional Advisory Committee, 2003-2007 
  • Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research, associate editor 
  • Spine, consultant reviewer 
  • Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics, consultant reviewer 
  • Tachdjian’s Pediatric Orthopaedics, Fourth Edition and Sixth Edition, contributing author 
  • US News and World Report, America’s Best Children’s Hospitals, Member Orthopaedic Working Group 2010-2022

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