Doctor Spotlight: Jason M. Desmarais
Dr. Jason M. Desmarais is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon, practicing in Concord, New London, Raymond, and Laconia. Dr. Desmarais is a graduate of College of The Holy Cross and Tufts University School of Medicine where he earned his master's and medical degree. Dr. Desmarais then completed his Residency at Tufts Affiliated Hospitals Orthopaedic Surgery program before completing his fellowship at Hoag Orthopedic Institute in Adult Reconstruction Hip and Knee.
Q: When did you first know you wanted to become an orthopaedic surgeon?
A: When I was in my first year of medical school I spent a day a week shadowing the chairmen of orthopedics and with the orthopedic residents.The surgeries were fascinating and enjoyed focusing on the musculoskeletal system. Also, the surgeons and residents were by far the happiest and all seemed to love their job. It was an easy decision for me.
Q: What were some challenges you faced along the way?
A: The road to becoming an orthopedic surgeon is a long and time-consuming one. There are many challenges along the way but finding a work-life balance is a constant struggle. It is a work in progress.
Q: What makes your patient care approach unique?
A: My goal is to match the needs of each patient. I enjoy meeting and learning about each patient and their goals. Whether that involves therapy, medicines, injections, or even surgery I want to work with patients to let them guide their care. I have a relaxed demeanor and try to connect with all of my patients on a personal level.
Q: What made you decide to focus on total joint surgery?
A: Early on in training I was very drawn to the dramatic improvement that patients with knee and hip arthritis experienced after a joint replacement. Many patients with debilitating knee or hip pain presented to the office with a limp, cane, or even wheelchair. After a knee or hip replacement, most patients were able to live a pain-free life and return to their favorite activities. Being able to provide a treatment that can make such a significant and concrete difference in patients’ lives was very appealing. Also, I found the surgeries really fun and interesting. Even though I focus on only a few surgeries-no two are the same and every knee and hip replacement is unique.
Q: What is the most common injury you see?
A: Knee and hip arthritis.
Q: Can you walk us through a day in the life of Dr. Desmarais?
A: Typically, up at 5 am and get a workout in. It helps me wake up and gives me mental clarity. Out of the house by 630-730 am and head to work. Every day is different and can involve being in the office or in the OR for the day but often home around 530. I have 4 children (7, 5, 2, and 7 months) and so when I get home it's usually mayhem-which I love. I spend time playing with them or at sports practice/games until dinner. Bath time, books, and getting ready for bed brings us to 730. Kids are in bed by 8 or so and then an hour or two of downtime for my wife and me to catch up. I often spend some time at night reviewing cases for the following day or later in the week. A little couch and TV time and bed by 10 pm to start all over again.
Q: What are you most proud of in your career to this point?
A: That I work at COPA with such a great group of colleagues who all take amazing care of patients.
Fill in the Blanks
- If I were not a doctor, I would be: Somehow involved in sports, I love sports.
- My biggest pet peeve is: Wasted time
- The #1 song on my all-time playlist is: So hard to answer, I like almost all types of music so depends on if I’m working out, in the OR or relaxing.
- One little-known fact about me is: I was born at Concord Hospital and grew up in Manchester. I also have 4 kids which keeps me on my toes.
- My favorite food is: Pizza, never get tired of it.