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John P. DiFiori, MD, FACSM, FAMSSM

Primary Sports Medicine
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About Dr. DiFiori

Dr. John DiFiori is Chief of the Primary Sports Medicine Service and Attending Physician at Hospital for Special Surgery. Prior to HSS, Dr. DiFiori was Chief of the UCLA Division of Sports Medicine and Non-Operative Orthopaedics. He was Head Team Physician for the UCLA Department of Intercollegiate Athletics, overseeing the care of more than 650 athletes in 24 NCAA sports. He spent more than 15 years on the sidelines with the Bruins football and basketball teams.

Dr. DiFiori's expertise in treating sports injuries in competitive athletes is internationally recognized. He serves as the Director of Sports Medicine for the NBA, where he is involved with the League’s research initiatives, and the development and implementation of all policies related to player health and safety. He has also been appointed to the FIBA (international basketball federation) Medical Commission where he serves to work with basketball federations across the world in setting standards for player health.

Dr. DiFiori speaking at the 2020 Scandinavian Sports CongressHe is a former President of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, the largest organization of sports medicine physicians in the US. He is distinguished as being named a fellow of both the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine. Dr. DiFiori recently presented at the 2020 Scandinavian Sports Medicine Congress, in Copenhagen, Denmark. He was honored to be the only American physician invited to provide scientific presentations at the three day event. He spoke on youth sports injuries, injury prevention  and the hot topic of early single sport specialization in young athletes.

Dr. DiFiori is the lead author for the recently published NBA Youth Basketball Guidelines, and the AMSSM Position Statement on Overuse Injuries and Burnout in Youth Sports. He serves on the editorial boards of Current Sports Medicine Reports and the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine.

Dr. DiFiori has served as a medical consultant for the NHL Players Association. He has also served for the USOC as a US team physician for several international competitions, including for US Soccer, USA Basketball, and the XIII Pan American Games.

Dr. DiFiori’s sports medicine practice at HSS focuses on the care of competitive athletes and active individuals of all ages.

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If your insurance is not listed, please call our office if you have questions regarding your insurance coverage. If you have out-of-network benefits, then your insurance may reimburse you for a portion of your office visit. We will work with you and your insurance to minimize your out-of-pocket costs. Financial assistance may be available for patients in need.



Chief, Primary Sports Medicine, Hospital for Special Surgery
Attending Physician, Hospital for Special Surgery



Fellow of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (FAMSSM)


Certificate of Added Qualification in Sports Medicine, 1995, 2005, 2015
Diplomate, American Board of Family Practice
Diplomate, National Board of Medical Examiners


Castle Connolly Top Doctor, 20 Years
Castle Connolly Regional Top Doctor, 2011-2020
Castle Connolly Top Doctors in New York Metro Area, 2018-2022
New York Magazine Top Doctors, 2021, 2022
Hollywood Reporter Top Doctors, 2014-2015


MD, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, 1989


Lancaster General Hospital, Department of Family Medicine, Lancaster, PA, 1992


UCLA Department of Family Medicine, Clinical Instructor and Sports Medicine Fellow, Los Angeles, CA, 1994

State Licensure



For My Patients

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Directions to The Pavilion

My office is located at The Pavilion, 541 East 71st Street. The main entrance to The Pavilion is on the north side of 71st Street underneath the sky bridge that connects the main hospital to the Belaire Building.

Pavilion map

Publications by Dr. DiFiori

Selected Journal Articles

DiFiori JP, Green G, Meeuwisse W, et al. Return to sport for North American professional sport leagues in the context of COVID-19. British Journal of Sports Medicine Published Online First: 23 September 2020. doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2020-103227

DiFiori JP, Güllich A, Brenner JS et al. The NBA and Youth Basketball: Recommendations for Promoting a Healthy and Positive Experience. Sports Med (2018) 48: 2053. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-018-0950-0

Selected Presentations

Invited speaker 40th Anniversary Ironman Triathlon Medical Conference, Kona, HI (October 7-11, 2018)

Invited keynote speaker 2018 FIBA Medical Commission Meeting, Geneva Switzerland (October 16, 2018)

Invited keynote speaker 2018 American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Annual Meeting (October 26, 2018)

Invited keynote speaker Major League Soccer Medical Symposium, Orlando, FL (January 2, 2019)

Invited speaker 13th annual MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, Boston, MA (March 1-2, 2019)


Industry Relationships

Industry Relationships

HSS has a long history of supporting appropriate relationships with industry because they advance HSS's mission to provide the highest quality patient care, improve patient mobility, and enhance the quality of life for all, and to advance the science of orthopedic surgery, rheumatology, and their related disciplines through research and education.

As of February 15, 2023, Dr. DiFiori reported no relationships with the healthcare industry.

HSS and its physicians make this information available to patients and the public, thus creating a transparent environment for those who are interested in this information. Further, the HSS Conflicts of Interest and Commitment Policy prohibits physicians from collecting royalties on products they develop that are used on patients at HSS.

Dr. DiFiori in the News