Orthopedic Conferences, Meetings and Events in 2020

Learn, Network and Earn Orthopedic CMEs


This blog was originally published on June 14, 2019 and updated on February 4, 2020. 

It’s hard to find time in your busy schedule to attend orthopedic surgery conferences, but they can be well worth it for the insights and occasional pearls you gain. In addition to techniques for improving your clinical practice and operations, the major orthopedic CME conferences also give you opportunities to complete education credits, network with peers and visit exhibit halls to see the latest orthopedic innovations.

To help you decide which orthopedic conferences in 2020 you should attend, let’s take a closer look at some top options and the topics, specializations and educational formats that set them apart.

Several conferences have yet to announce their topics and schedules for 2020, so those interested should check back for updates as the conference dates approach

AAOS 2020 Annual Meeting – American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

When: March 24-28, 2020

Where: Orlando, FL

Size: 30,000 attendees

As the largest orthopedic conference of 2020, the AAOS Annual Meeting presents a wealth of research and strategies for managing musculoskeletal conditions, as well as addressing economic and practice management challenges. It also provides opportunities for attendees to learn how to incorporate state-of-the art procedures and technology into their clinical practice. With a wide variety of innovative session formats, AAOS is a leading forum for discussing orthopedic issues such as patient safety, advocacy and culturally competent care.

Some 2020 sessions included:

  • Healthcare 2020: How Orthopaedic Leaders are Preparing for the Future
  • Posterior Cruciate Ligament Surgery: The Step-by-Step Road to Success
  • Challenges in the Management of Neuromuscular Hip Disorders in Children and Young Adults
  • Getting It Right the Second Time: Pearls and Principles for Revision Surgery in the Foot and Ankle
  • Minimizing Opioids in Total Joint Arthroplasty
  • Femur Fractures: Subtrochanteric to Supracondylar
  • Navigating Options for Spinal Surgeons: State of the Art 2020
  • Cultural Considerations in Education and Patient Care

Educational formats and specialty courses include:

  • Ask an Expert
  • Lunch and Learn Courses
  • Medical Student Programs
  • Orthopaedic Review Courses
  • Orthopaedic Video Theater
  • Paper Presentations
  • Posters
  • Scientific Exhibits
  • Speed Mentoring
  • Symposiums
  • Technology Theater
  • TechTalks

North American Spine Society (NASS) 2020 Annual Meeting

When: October 7-10, 2020

Where: San Diego, CA

Size: 3,000 attendees

Focused on spine issues, best practices and procedural questions, this orthopedic surgery conference provides a variety of educational tracks and orthopedic CME credits. Attendees will also have opportunities to brainstorm with subject matter experts, ask questions and get advice.

As of January, 2020, details for the NASS 2020 Annual Meeting have yet to be announced. Check the official NASS website for more details as they become available.

2019 sessions included:

  • Coding Update 2019: Mastering the Coding Maze
  • Medical Symposium: Ambulatory Surgical Centers: Is This the Next Big Thing?
  • Hands-on Course: Section on Minimally Invasive Procedures: Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
  • Integrated Symposium: Surgical Treatment of Low Back Pain: Evidence, Controversy and Debate
  • Hands-on Course: Lumbar Spinal Injections
  • Integrated Symposium: Opiates: The Changing Roles and Responsibilities of the Spine Surgeon
  • Surgical Symposium: Complications Avoidance and Management Strategies
  • Resident/Fellow Education Pathway: Transition to Practice I: Landing a Job

Past educational formats include:

  • Surgical labs
  • Medical, surgical and integrated symposia
  • Online and in-person poster presentations
  • Cadaver workshops
  • Hands-on courses
  • Q&A sessions
  • Forums

American Society for Surgery of the Hand (ASSH) Annual Meeting

When: October 1-3, 2020

Where: San Antonio, TX

Size: 2,600 attendees

At their 75th annual orthopedic meeting, the ASSH will present information covering all aspects of hand surgery and the business of orthopedics. Hand care professionals from around the world will come together to share, discuss and learn about breakthrough techniques and procedures advancing the care and treatment of hand and upper extremity.

Details for the 2020 ASSH Annual Meeting have yet to be announced as of January, 2020. Those interested in attending can go to the official ASSH Annual Meeting homepage for updates.

2019 sessions included:

  • Precourse 4 – Musculoskeletal Ultrasound from the Shoulder to Fingertips: A Hands-on Workshop (Lab)
  • Clinical Paper Session 2: Carpal Tunnel
  • Symposium 6: Stump the Professors
  • ICL65: What I wish I knew in the first 5 years of practice
  • Symposium 16: Burnout: Maintaining the Joy of Hand Surgery Practice
  • IC12: Hand Surgeons: The Front Line in the Fight Against Bone Loss
  • Symposium 17: Complex Elbow Trauma in 2019: How To Stay Out of Trouble
  • Postcourse 1: Coding and Reimbursement

Educational formats include:

  • Scientific sessions
  • Symposia
  • Instructional course lectures
  • Clinical case reviews
  • Industry forums
  • Scientific posters
  • Commercial booths
  • Poster presentations
  • Solutions Center Engagement Areas

American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons (AAHKS) Annual Meeting

When: November 5-8, 2020

Where: Dallas, TX

Size: 2,000 attendees

Held in Dallas in November each year, this orthopedic meeting is designed to help surgeons improve the care they provide to patients and to help advance the technology of the orthopedic field. It includes courses for physicians, physician assistants, residents, non-physician team members and hospital administrators, as well as an international reception that brings together member surgeons from around the world.

As with other orthopedic conferences happening later in 2020, session topics have yet to be determined. Potential attendees can learn more about the 2020 AAHKS Annual Meeting program at the official homepage as details become available.

Past topics include:

  • Implant design
  • Outcomes and surgical techniques for hip and knee surgeons
  • Complications of primary and revision total joint arthroplasty (TJA)
  • Socioeconomic issues in healthcare
  • New research on adult reconstruction (total joint replacement)

Educational formats include:

  • Lectures
  • Breakout sessions
  • Small group discussions
  • Interactive symposia
  • Research presentations

American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM) Annual Meeting

When: July 9-12, 2020

Where: Seattle, WA

Size: 1,300 attendees

Focused on keeping athletes in the game, this orthopedic meeting presents groundbreaking scientific research, answers to key sports medicine questions and best practices to implement into your everyday work. You’ll also have opportunities to engage and collaborate with peers and mentors.

If you’re interested in attending, check the AOSSM Annual Meeting homepage as details for 2020 have not yet been announced.

Sessions at the 2019 Annual Meeting included:

  • General Session: Knee: Meniscus Cartilage – The Cutting Edge for 2019
  • Presidential Keynote 2019: The Importance of Medical and Sports Advocacy for Athletes at All Levels
  • Shoulder Instability: From Anterior to Posterior
  • The Patellofemoral Joint – Not a Mystery Anymore
  • Platelet-Rich Plasma: Does It Decrease Meniscus Repair Failure Risk?
  • What Biologics Work Best for Meniscus Repair – How to Easily Do This in the OR
  • The Opioid Epidemic: What is Our Obligation?
  • Technique Spotlight: Realignment is the Way to Go to Treat Cartilage Lesions: My Technique

Educational formats included:

  • Live surgeries
  • Instructional courses
  • Posters
  • Paper presentations
  • Guest speakers, including New England Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady
  • Workshops
  • Q&A sessions
  • Panel discussions

Orthopaedic Summit (OSET) 2020

When: TBA

Where: TBA

Size: 1,000 attendees

This orthopedic CME conference provides an international perspective on the latest techniques in arthroplasty and arthroscopy, as well as sports medicine of the knee, shoulder, hip, elbow/wrist, foot/ankle, trauma and spine. In addition to physician sessions, it includes sessions for physician assistants, nurse practitioners, athletic trainers, and physical and occupational therapists. Other orthopedic conference highlights include a fellow and resident summit and an advanced practitioner summit to provide collaboration and networking opportunities.

The last Orthopaedic Summit took place in December, 2019, so details for the 2020 conference are anticipated to be released later this year. As with other future events, those interested in attending should check the official Orthopaedic Summit website for updates.

2019 sessions included:

  • Outcomes & Complications After Total Ankle Replacement
  • Evolving Technique Update: Ankle Arthrodesis & Total Ankle Arthroplasty After Failed Osteochondral Allograft Transplantation: Which Procedure Is The Right One To Use
  • Controversies in Rehab of the Athletic Hip
  • Reverse Shoulder Arthroplasty for the General Orthopaedic Surgeon: A Primer
  • The Nasty Elbow – How I Do It So the Patient Wins Every Time
  • Case Presentations With Questions & Answers: Experiences with Lumbar TDA Revisions
  • Distal Humeral Fractures – So Many Choices, So Little Time!

Educational formats included:

  • Specialty sessions
  • Live surgeries
  • Cadaver labs
  • Rapid-fire debates and panels
  • Case presentations
  • Lunchtime symposia
  • Small group discussions

2020 AOAO Annual Fall Meeting

When: October 22-24, 2020

Where: Austin, TX

Size: 850 attendees

Hosted by the American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopaedics, this orthopedic surgery conference’s theme for 2020 is “Seeing the Clear Way to Avoid Complications.” In addition to orthopedic surgeons and residents, it caters to allied health professionals and physicians interested in the practice of orthopedics, with sessions covering recent orthopedic developments, techniques and advances.

Session topics: TBA (session schedule and topics available Spring 2020)

Educational formats include:

  • Lectures
  • Panels
  • Case discussions
  • Q&A sessions

AAOE 2020 Annual Conference – American Association of Orthopaedic Executives

When: May 2-5, 2020

Where: San Diego, CA

Size: 600+

Focused on the business side of orthopedics, this orthopedic CME conference is designed for managing physicians, hospital administrators, executives, professional staff, practice leaders, athletic trainers, educators and industry partners. With over 70 speakers, it provides ample opportunities to learn about the latest trends and connect with peers and industry professionals.

2020 conference topics include:

  • Patient Satisfaction: Using Data and Technology to Improve Accountability and Drive Meaningful Change
  • Powered Productivity: Tech Tools You Need to Get Stuff Done
  • Critical Practice Measures: How to Use Data to Motivate Your Providers
  • HIPAA and Data Security 101: Is Your Data Secure?
  • Health IT Policy: What You Should Know
  • Selecting and Implementing a New EHR/EMR

Educational formats include:

  • Pre-conference sessions
  • Lectures
  • Speed meetings with vendors
  • TED-style talks

California Orthopaedic Association (COA) Annual Meeting

When: April 16-19, 2020

Where: Rancho Palos Verdes, CA

Size: 450+ attendees

Held at the beautiful Terranea Resort in Ranchos Palos Verdes, this orthopedic surgery conference focuses on educating orthopedic surgeons, practice managers, physician assistants and nurse practitioners on new research, best practices, cutting-edge technology and legislative updates in orthopedics. Catering to younger and more experienced surgeons alike, the program features courses related to treating infections, trauma, foot and ankle, spine, hand and upper extremities, oncology and sports medicine.

Sessions include:

  • Diabesity (Diabetes and Obesity) and its Effect on Disability Evaluations
  • Workers’ Compensation – Billing/Coding Issues
  • Risk Management: Service Animals in Your Medical Practice
  • New Technologies to Manage Patient Care
  • Resident Symposium: Fundamentals of Starting and Continuing a Successful Practice
  • What’s New in Trauma? Panel Q&A

Educational formats include:

  • Lectures
  • Q&As
  • Interactive clinical forums
  • Mock oral case reviews

Texas Orthopaedic Association (TOA) Annual Meeting

When: February 7-8, 2020

Where: San Antonio, TX

Size: 400 attendees

 Organized by the Texas Orthopaedic Association (TOA), the TOA orthopedic CME conference also encompasses the annual orthopedic meetings of the Texas Orthopaedic Foundation (TOF) and the Texas Society of Sports Medicine (TSSM). Covering clinical, coding, business and public policy topics with a focus on issues specific to Texas orthopedic practices, it’s one of the largest orthopedic surgery conferences in the Southwest.

2020 sessions include:

  • Complications in Trauma Cases
  • Operating on Other Physicians… What Could Go Wrong!
  • Patient-Centered Care: Is It Just Talk?
  • Foot and Ankle: Cases That Didn’t Go As Expected
  • Nerve Injury After TKA
  • Breakout Session – Coding Course Learning From Complications: Clinical Presentations
  • Paper Presentation – Osteoporosis and the Female Athlete

Educational formats include:

  • Cadaver labs
  • Symposia
  • Paper presentations
  • Case studies
  • Workshops
  • Breakout sessions

Other Orthopedic Conferences in 2020 to Consider Attending


Now that you know what some of the top orthopedic conferences of 2020 are, you’re better equipped to identify the right ones for you. We hope you enjoy attending your chosen orthopedic meetings, and take away some valuable insights that help you improve your practice.

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