We are pleased to announce that after six years of dedication and leadership as chief of Duke Anesthesiology’s Pain Medicine Division, Thomas Buchheit, MD, is advancing to a new role as the director of the Regenerative Pain Therapies Program (RPTP) in our department’s Center for Translational Pain Medicine (CTPM), effective November 1, 2019. With this transition, Kevin Vorenkamp, MD, has been named interim chief of our Pain Medicine Division.
The RPTP, which Buchheit co-founded with Dr. William Maixner in 2018, is unique in its rigorous, translational scientific approach to regenerative therapies for the treatment of osteoarthritis and tendinopathies. Clinically, the program utilizes a broad spectrum of therapies with a focus on Autologous Conditioned Serum injections. A research arm will accompany the clinical service to optimize outcomes for patients with degenerative joint disease and musculoskeletal pain conditions.
Buchheit began his professional career at Duke in 1999 as a clinical associate in our department. Over the next three years, he quickly rose through the ranks as director of the Duke Pain Medicine Fellowship, co-director of the Pain Management Division, and co-medical director of Duke Pain and Palliative Care. He transitioned to private practice in 2002 and returned in 2010 to join Duke Anesthesiology faculty as an associate professor. Three years later, he was named chief of our Pain Medicine Division, where he expanded the clinical program to a system that stretched across the Triangle, recruiting physicians and practitioners with expertise in neurostimulation, spine intervention, musculoskeletal medicine, orofacial pain, and high-risk medical care. This team created ideal care models and advised decision makers both within the Duke University Health System and across the state regarding best practices for pain management in the midst of the opioid crisis. Under Buchheit’s leadership, the pain program integrated closely with our department’s CTPM, the Department of Defense, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and the VA Health Care System on several successful research projects that defined the nature of post-nerve injury pain, inflammatory markers of risk, and novel, non-opioid methods of treatment.
Buchheit received his medical degree from Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta in 1994. He completed a residency in anesthesiology and perioperative medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and a fellowship in pain management at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Buchheit currently serves on the Duke University Health System Opioid Safety Committee and on the editorial board of the journal, Pain Medicine. He also recently served as president of the Pain Society of the Carolinas, an organization that represented pain physicians, practitioners and nurses across two states.
Kevin Vorenkamp, MD
Vorenkamp brings 12 years of experience to his new role as interim chief of the Pain Medicine Division. Just last year, he joined Duke Anesthesiology faculty as an associate professor and currently serves as the medical director of the Duke Raleigh Hospital Pain Clinic and the associate director for Patient Safety and Quality. Prior to joining Duke, he practiced at Virginia Mason in Seattle, Washington and the University of Virginia (UVA), serving as medical director of UVA’s Pain Management Center and director of both universities’ pain medicine fellowships. Vorenkamp received his medical degree in 2002 from the University of Michigan Medical School, where he went on to complete residency in anesthesiology. He completed a fellowship in pain medicine at the University of Vermont. Vorenkamp has actively held leadership positions within many national societies, including the American Medical Association, the American Society of Anesthesiologists, the American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, and the American Board of Anesthesiology.
In his interim role, Vorenkamp looks forward to supporting the talented group of providers within the Pain Medicine Division, which covers the Inpatient Pain Service and offers clinical services at nine locations.
Please join us in extending congratulations to Vorenkamp and Buchheit on their new roles, and thanking Buchheit for his commitment to our department.