Dr. José Juan Diaz Institute for Non Surgical Orthopedics
There’s a theory passed among the inner circles of women: a man who honors his mother is a man adored by women of all ages. If he loves her, he likely has a good respect for womenkind. So when the mostly-female administrative staff at the Institute for Non Surgical Orthopedics teases the young Dr. José Juan Diaz about his many patient “girlfriends”—most over the age of 60—they’re hitting the nail on the head. He has the touch—the gift—part boyish charm, part shy smile, and part impish flirt. He loves his mom, crediting her as a major influence on who he is and his choice of a career. And yes, ladies, he’s single.
His mother grew up in Puerto Rico. It was an old-world culture that demanded that as the oldest daughter, she stay home from school to cook and care for the younger children. As a young woman without an education, she headed out on her own to New York City. Bright lights, big city, but it was education she cherished. She earned her way through school, became an x-ray technician in a local hospital, and married a college professor. As a boy, José grew up around that hospital as he waited for her to finish work. He still admires her courage as a self-made success. And both parents instilled in him the value of an education.
Whether it was the community of that hospital, the friendly doctor handling his boyhood broken arm, or his childhood asthma treatments, José became fascinated by the practice of medicine. He took a slight detour when he majored in Spanish literature in college. His acute intelligence helped land his first job as a statistical analyst in Manhattan’s financial district. But destiny called, and soon he made his way to the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine where he diligently earned the D.O. behind his name. He trained at the prestigious Rusk Institute of Rehabilitative Medicine, the largest university-affiliated center devoted entirely to patient care, research, and training in rehabilitation medicine.
Fast-forward a few years, and Dr. Diaz’s friendly face now travels between three offices of the Institute for Non-Surgical Orthopedics. Here he focuses on Physiatry (pronounced fizz ee at' tree), the specialty that combines physical medicine and rehabilitation to treat musculoskeletal and neurological disorders. In laymen’s terms, this means he uses physical touch and manipulation—combined with an extensive knowledge of medicine—to help ease suffering from pain and guide patients toward healing. He also trained at the Helms Medical Institute, the oldest and best-known program in North America in the science and art of medical acupuncture.
It’s a physical as well as a mental job, and Dr. Diaz works hard. A former athlete himself, Dr. Diaz likes to keep moving and finds that manipulating patients helps maintain his own fitness level. He treats a wide range of patients. A typical day might include a visit from an elite athlete such as a professional golfer with an injury or a tennis player who needs to fine-tune his range of motion. He might see a stroke patient or one recovering from a hip or knee replacement. He treats spinal cord injuries, fractures, back pain, peripheral neuropathies, and a variety of other issues.
In his practice, Dr. Diaz uses the latest technology, performing electromyography and nerve conduction studies to help diagnose and treat patients. He uses everything at his disposal: years of training, expert knowledge, and common sense included. But there’s more to his successful practice—it’s that warm human touch that his patients respond so well to.
When Dr. Diaz first met Dr. Joel Stein, the founder of the practice, he admired Dr. Stein’s bedside manner. He watched how Dr. Stein’s patients adored him and remembers thinking: I want to be that kind of a doctor. And it wasn’t too difficult to achieve, because the truth is that Dr. Diaz simply enjoys people. Period. He’s passionate about being a healer and bringing relief to his patients, but he’s also the type who wants to stop and chat if he runs into a patient at the neighborhood grocery store.
“When we see a patient, we don’t go in with a clipboard and pen,” he said recently. “We sit down and talk face to face. It’s one-on-one; it’s a human touch. We want to be caring…because we care.” It quickly becomes obvious that he really does.
Even when he’s hanging out with friends, Dr. Diaz cares more about the friends than the event. He loves world music, travel, photography, or simply going out on the town, but as he puts it: “It’s not what you’re doing but who you’re doing it with. I’m easy—not picky—I just like to be together.”
Final comments about Dr. José Juan Diaz? I have this single friend I’d like you to meet…
Dr. José Juan Diaz
Institute for Non Surgical Orthopedics
Fort Lauderdale, Weston, Hollywood, Delray Beach, Aventura