Dr. Richard Cunningham has been practicing orthopedic sports medicine in the Vail Valley and in Summit County, Colorado for over two decades. In addition to seeing patients from the mountains and other areas of Colorado, he cares for patients from across the country as well as international patients who come to Vail, CO for his expertise and compassionate care. Dr. Cunningham’s is a top knee and shoulder doctor who cares for a highly active and athletic patient population. He has assembled and works alongside a great care team.
Dr. Cunningham’s Orthopaedic Training
Dr. Cunningham completed his Sports Medicine Fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh. This fellowship is regarded by other orthopedic sports medicine surgeons as one of the best knee and shoulder programs in the nation. During his time there, he served as an associate physician for the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Pittsburgh Penguins, furthering his expertise in the care of injured athletes.
Upon completing this fellowship, Dr. Cunningham joined Vail Summit Orthopedics & Neurosurgery, where his focus extends to caring for patients and athletes of all levels. He serves as a team physician for the U.S. Ski Team, and you may see him ringside as the doc at the annual MMA fights in Vail. He also provides care to a great many ski patrollers, ski instructors and local high school student athletes.
Compassionate Patient Care
A notable aspect of Dr. Cunningham’s practice is his commitment to his community. Every year, he provides free sports medicine physicals to high school athletes, ensuring that young athletes can safely participate in their sports. Similarly, he sees and cares for a large number of local ski patrollers.
Dr. Cunningham’s dedication to education is evident in his regular community lectures on knee and shoulder injuries. He gives educational talks annually to primary care, emergency room physicians, and physician assistants, as well as to ski patrollers at Vail-area ski resorts. He also contributes articles to local publications, including the Vail Daily, in order to educate people on how to avoid certain injuries and how to maintain joint health.
Innovative Sports Medicine Care
A groundbreaking aspect of Dr. Cunningham’s practice is his adoption of innovative surgical techniques. He does more ACL repairs (instead of the more invasive ACL reconstruction) than any other orthopedic surgeon in the mountains. At times, he utilizes the BEAR (Bridge-Enhanced ACL Repair) surgical technique, and he was the first orthopedic surgeon to perform BEAR in the Vail Valley. With ACL repair for proximal tears, Dr. Cunningham can save one’s original ACL instead of removing the torn ACL and reconstructing it with a tendon graft.
Beyond surgical innovations, Dr. Cunningham stands out for his holistic approach to health. He is an advocate for eating less inflammatory, processed foods and instead eating more whole, plant foods which can help to reduce the symptoms of arthritis and help lead to a healthy body weight. This commitment to holistic health aligns with his belief in personalized patient care, recognizing that each individual requires a unique approach for optimal recovery.
Best Sports Medicine Doctor
Dr. Cunningham’s leadership in the field of orthopedics and sports medicine is further underscored by his tenure as Chief of Surgery at Vail Valley Medical Center from 2008 to 2015. During this time, he received the Clinical Excellence Award from his physician colleagues at the medical center, a testament to his contributions to the field.
As a member of prestigious orthopedic organizations, including the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Arthroscopy Association of North America, and American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine, Dr. Cunningham remains committed to ongoing education and training in the latest advancements in orthopedics and sports medicine.
Dr. Richard Cunningham is a top sports medicine surgeon in Colorado, with extensive experience treating shoulder and knee injuries. He is committed to mastering innovative surgical techniques, and he is committed to providing patient-centered care. He has strived to develop a harmonious blend of expertise, compassion, and a holistic approach to health, making him a trusted figure in the world of orthopedic sports medicine surgery.
If you are in need of a top orthopedic surgeon, contact Dr. Cunningham and his team today.