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Photo of Dr. Sutton

Karen M. Sutton, MD

Orthopedic Surgery, Sports Medicine
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Photo of Dr. Sutton

Karen M. Sutton, MD

Orthopedic Surgery, Sports Medicine
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Dr. Sutton is a board certified sports medicine surgeon with surgical expertise in arthroscopy of the shoulder, knee and hip. She is an Associate Attending Orthopedic Surgeon at Hospital for Special Surgery and Head Team Physician for United States Women's Lacrosse. She is also Chief Medical Officer for World Lacrosse and Team Physician for US Ski & Snowboard.

Dr. Sutton's passion for sports medicine stems from her years playing lacrosse at Duke University where she was Team Captain for 3 years, Regional All-American, Academic All-American, and led her team to the Final Four. As Head Team Physician of US Women's Lacrosse, Dr. Sutton is responsible for providing care for National Team athletes. She was elected to the Sports, Science and Safety Committee for United States Lacrosse where she advises the Board of US Lacrosse on injury prevention and management. She has also been working with Darien Lacrosse and Fairfield Ludlow Lacrosse in Connecticut. She also served as Team Physician for Yale University Athletics, Albertus Magnus College and the professional Women's Tennis Association (WTA). During her fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard School of Medicine, she assisted in the orthopedic care of the Boston Red Sox, the Boston Bruins and the New England Revolution.

A national authority on sports injuries and prevention, Dr. Sutton has worked with various news outlets such as NBC Universal, ESPN-W, WFAN radio, WTNH, WYBC and News 12 Connecticut. She has made substantial contributions to research, publishing over 30 publications and giving over 80 presentations on topics from anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction to treating the female athlete to shoulder issues in breast cancer. Dr. Sutton is also an elected member of the American Orthopaedic Association, acknowledging scholarship in orthopedic surgery. She serves on multiple committees on the American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine. She is a reviewer of leading orthopedic journals, including The American Journal of Sports Medicine, The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, and The Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery.

Dr. Sutton began her academic career at Duke University, where she earned her undergraduate degree in biochemistry, graduating with distinction. She earned her medical degree at University of Maryland. She completed her orthopedic surgery residency at Yale University School of Medicine followed by fellowships in sports medicine at Massachusetts GeneralHospital/Harvard School of Medicine and pediatric sports medicine at Boston Children's Hospital/Harvard School of Medicine. She was an Associate Professor in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at Yale University.

Back in the Game Patient Stories


Associate Attending Orthopedic Surgeon, Hospital for Special Surgery
Associate Professor, Clinical Orthopedic Surgery, Weill Cornell Medical College
Associate Attending Orthopedic Surgeon, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital


Special Expertise

Female athlete
ACL injuries
Rotator cuff disease
Shoulder instability/dislocations
Patellofemoral pain
Hip injuries
Hip arthroscopy
Pediatric sports medicine


Connecticut Magazine Best Doctors, 2018
New Haven Living Best Doctors, 2015
Cambridge Who's Who, 2011, 2014, 2016
Pinkney Fellow, 2002
First Place, Medical Student Research Day, 2002
Rush Medical Club, 2002
Bassett Scholar, Duke University, 1999-2003
ACC "Top Six for Service", 1999
Graduation with Distinction—Duke University, 1998
IWLCA South Region All-American—Division I women's lacrosse, 1998
ACC Women's Lacrosse All-Tournament, 1998
IWLCA Academic All-American, 1997 and 1998
Blue Devil Club Outstanding Scholar-Athlete of the Year Finalist, 1998
Kenneth Gordon Fellowship, 1998
Phi Lambda Upsilon Honorary Chemical Society, 1998


American Orthopaedic Association, 2015-present
Arthroscopy Association of North America, 2008-present
American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine, 2008-present
Eastern Orthopaedic Society, 2008-present
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2003-present
Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society, 2002-present
American Medical Association, 1999-present
The Bassett Society, 1997-present
US Lacrosse, 1994-present



Insurance Information

Please do not hesitate to contact our office if you have questions regarding your insurance coverage. You may have coverage subject to the availability of 'out-of-network' benefits.

Industry Relationships

One of the goals of HSS is to advance the science of orthopedic surgery, rheumatology, and related disciplines for the benefit of patients. Physicians at HSS may collaborate with outside companies for education, research and medical advances. HSS supports this collaboration in order to foster medical breakthroughs; however HSS also believes that these collaborations must be disclosed.

As part of the disclosure process, this website lists physician collaborations with outside companies if payments were received during the prior year, or if the HSS physician currently receives payment. The disclosures are provided by information provided by the physician and other sources and are updated regularly. Further information may be available on individual company websites.

As of October 19, 2017, Dr. Sutton reported no financial interest relationships with healthcare industry.

By disclosing the collaborations of HSS physicians with industry on this website, HSS and its physicians make this information available to their patients and the public, thus creating a transparent environment for those who are interested in this information. Further, the HSS Conflicts of Interest Policy does not permit physicians to collect royalties on products developed by him/her that are used on patients at HSS.


University of Maryland School of Medicine


Yale University, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery


Yale University, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery


Harvard University/Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Sports Medicine


American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (ABOS)
ABOS Subspeciality Certificate in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine

State Licensure

New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts

Selected Books by Dr. Sutton

Sutton KM: Orthopaedic Examination. In: Preparticipation Physical Examination, 5th ed., American Academy of Pediatrics 2017. (in press)

Sutton KM, Grauer JN: Basic Science Articular Cartilage. In: Comprehensive Orthopaedic Review, AAOS 2012.

Sutton K, Tomak S, Fleming L: Percutaneous/Minimally Invasive Achilles Tendon Repair. In: Weisel S, ed. Operative Techniques in Orthopaedic Surgery, 1st ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2007.

Covey AS, Sutton KM, Smart LR, Jokl P: Aging and the Master Tennis Athlete.

Selected Publications

Sutton KM, Ibe IK, Knobf TM, Sanft TB: Musculoskeletal effects of antineoplastic agents. J Amer Acad Orthop Surg 2017. (accepted)

Rubio DR, Piposar J, Blaine TA, Sutton KM: Subscapularis tears in our younger athletes. Sports Injuries and Medicine 2017. (in press 2017-JSIMD-111)

Gallacher S, Zhu D, Sutton KM, Blaine TA: Current Concepts Review: Orthopedic Injuries in Equestrian Sports. Orthop J Sports Med, 2015, 3(9).

Halim A, Lamikanra O, Sutton KM: Female athletes: unique challenges facing the woman warrior. Am J Orthopedics, 2015; 45 (1):12-15.

Gardner EC, Chan W, Sutton KM, Blaine TA: Shoulder injuries in men's collegiate lacrosse 2004-2009." Am J Sports Med, May 2016.

Sutton KM, Bullock J: Anterior cruciate ligament rupture: differences between males and females. J Am Acad Orthop Surg 2013; 21(1): 41-50.

Park S, Knobf MT, Sutton KM: Etiology, assessment, and management of aromatase inhibitor-related musculoskeletal symptoms. Clin J Onc Nurs 2012; 16(3): 260-266.

Seon JK, Gadikota H, Wu J, Sutton K, Gill TJ, Li, G: Comparison of single- and double-bundle anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction in restoration of knee kinematics and anterior cruciate ligament forces. Am J Sports Med 2010; 38 (7): 11359-67.

Wu J, Seon JK, Gadikota H, Hosseini A, Sutton K, Gill TJ, Li G: In-situ forces in the anteromedial and posterolateral bundles of the anterior cruciate ligament under simulated functional loading conditions. Am J Sports Med 2010; 38(3): 558-63.

Sutton KM, Dodds SD, Ahmad CS, Sethi PM: Surgical treatment of distal biceps rupture. J Am Acad Orthop Surg 2010; 18(3): 139-48.

For more publications, please see the PubMed listing.

Selected Presentations

Sutton KM. Options for partial rotator cuff lesions. New England Orthopaedic Society: Jiminy Peak, MA. June 2017

Sutton KM. Update on prevention of anterior cruciate ligament injuries in the female athlete. Presented at the Duke University School of Medicine Feagin Leadership Program: Durham, NC. May 2017.

Sutton KM. Anterior cruciate ligament injury prevention in lacrosse. Presented at the US Lacrosse Sports Medicine Symposium: Baltimore, MD. January 2017.

Sutton KM. Shoulder injuries in men's lacrosse. Presented at the Basett Society Meeting: Duke University, Durham, NC, November 2016.

Sutton, KM: Adhesive capsulitis and the association with breast cancer. Presented for the Duke University Bassett Society: Durham, NC, October 2015.

Sutton, KM: Techniques in anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. Presented for the Future Leaders in Orthopaedic Surgery Resident Program: Raynam, MA, September, 2015

Sutton KM: United States Lacrosse Webcast Health and Safety: Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries. Presented at the United States Health and Safety Webcast: Baltimore, MD, May 2014.

Sutton, K.M.: Important updates on anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgical techniques. Keynote speaker for Women in Sports Conference, Stony Brook Medicine, Stony Brook, NY, June 14, 2013.

Wu JL, Seon JK, Hemanth GR, Hosseini A, Sutton KM, Gill TJ, Li G: In-situ forces in the anteromedial and posterolateral bundles of the anterior cruciate ligament under simulated physiological loading conditions. Presented at the American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine: New Orleans, LA, March 2010.

Sutton KM, Mankin HJ: The potential role of cyclooxygenase-2 in chondrosarcoma. Presented at the Orthopaedic Research Education Foundation Meeting at Hospital for Joint Diseases: New York, NY, May, 2006.

Research Description

2016-present Yale University New Haven, CT
Biomechanics Lab

  • Shoulder pad force absorption in men's lacrosse
  • Co-investigators: Blaine, Theodore; Gardner, Elizabeth; Tommasini, Steven; Kovacevic, David
  • Grant awarded for research

2014-present Yale University New Haven, CT
Smilow Cancer Center

  • Adhesive Capsulitis in the breast cancer population
  • Co-investigators: Knobf, Tish and Friedman, Louis
  • Grant awarded for research

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Surgical Locations

Dr. Sutton performs surgery at the following locations: