Stephanie Tow, M.D.

Stephanie Tow, M.D.

  • Physical Medicine & Rehab
  • Sports medicine needs in athletes with impairments and disabilities
  • Pediatric sports medicine

Biography

Stephanie Tow, M.D., is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at UT Southwestern Medical Center. She specializes in pediatric rehabilitation medicine, pediatric sports medicine, and adaptive/Para sports medicine (addressing sports medicine needs in athletes with impairments and disabilities).

Dr. Tow completed her undergraduate degree in neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University, after which she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in Hong Kong. She earned her medical degree at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (now Rutgers University) - New Jersey Medical School and completed her residency and chief residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation at UT Southwestern. Dr. Tow is one of only four physicians in the U.S. to have completed dual fellowship training in the subspecialties of pediatric rehabilitation medicine and sports medicine. She performed her pediatric rehabilitation medicine fellowship at the University of Colorado/Children’s Hospital Colorado and her sports medicine fellowship at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City.

Board certified by the American Board of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation in both sports medicine and physical medicine and rehabilitation, she joined the UT Southwestern faculty in 2020.

Dr. Tow is the head team physician and a national medical classifier for U.S. Paralympics Swimming. She is the Director of the Adaptive Sports Medicine Program at UT Southwestern and serves as team physician and medical director of multiple adaptive/Para sports organizations and events in the Dallas-Fort Worth region.

Her clinical practice focuses on:

Pediatric sports medicine, which includes the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of sports injuries and medical issues, musculoskeletal conditions, and concussion in athletes with and without disabilities. Dr. Tow not only evaluates the mechanism and cause of an injury or medical issue but also addresses the patient’s history and risk factors that may have contributed to the injury or medical issue. Her treatment/therapy plans are customized to each patient to focus not only on the injury but also these risk factors in order for patients to prevent future similar injuries and become even stronger.

Pediatric rehabilitation medicine, which includes the diagnosis and/or management of various medical conditions that lead to impairment such as cerebral palsy, brain injury, strokes, spinal cord injury, spina bifida, limb difference or deficiency/amputation, achondroplasia, arthrogryposis, osteogenesis imperfecta, Down syndrome, other metabolic or genetic disorders, and many other congenital or acquired conditions leading to physical impairments. Dr. Tow takes the time to understand her patients’ needs and history in order to create an individualized plan tailored toward optimizing patients’ function, growth and development, quality of life, and activities related to the patient’s/family’s goals for physical activity/recreation/fitness/sports, in addition to their medical needs.

Dr. Tow also has an interest in motion analysis as it relates to her patients’ medical conditions and function.

Having personally sustained multiple sports injuries (including an ACL tear) and also having worked with many individuals with impairments and disabilities, Dr. Tow understands the need to evaluate patients comprehensively and not just treat the medical condition. Her approach to patient care considers the goals, quality of life, function, and various other factors of patients and their families. As a former teacher, she also spends time with her patients to make sure they understand the “what” and “why” behind their medical condition and plan, as well as expectations moving forward.

Dr. Tow is a member of multiple national, institutional, and departmental committees and serves in leadership roles for several of them, including as Chair-Elect of the Adapted Sports and Recreation Committee of the American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine.

She has delivered scores of lectures and presentations and is involved in multiple research projects related to her clinical interests in adaptive/Para sports medicine, concussion, pediatric sports medicine, pediatric rehabilitation medicine, and medical education. Among many other honors, she was recognized as having a top original research abstract at the 2019 American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Annual Assembly in San Antonio, Texas.

Personal Note

Dr. Tow moved back to the Dallas area in 2020 after gaining experience at multiple other top hospital systems in the nation. She grew up playing multiple sports and was primarily a competitive swimmer (her main events were the 100 back and 100 fly), helping to lead her high school team to be the state champions of New Jersey her senior year. Dr. Tow competed across the country on the Johns Hopkins University women’s ultimate frisbee team and has also competed in multiple triathlons. She also enjoys skiing, cycling, yoga, traveling, cooking, camping, and hiking in the great outdoors.

Education & Training
  • Chief Resident - UT Southwestern Medical Center (2016-2016), Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
  • Internship - University of Maryland - Mercy Medical Center (2013-2014), Internal Medicine
  • Residency - UT Southwestern Medical Center (2014-2017), Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
  • Fellowship - University of Colorado School of Medicine (2017-2019), Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine
  • Fellowship - Children's Mercy Hospital (2019-2020), Sports Medicine
  • Medical School - University of Medicine and Dentistry - New Jersey Medical School (2009-2013)
Professional Associations & Affiliations
  • American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (2014)
  • American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine (2016)
  • American Academy of Pediatrics (2018)
  • American College of Sports Medicine (2020)
  • American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine (2018)
  • American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (2018)
  • Association of Academic Physiatrists (2014)
  • Pediatric Research in Sports Medicine Society (2019)
Honors & Awards
  • AAPM&R Annual Assembly Top Abstracts in Practice Management and Leadership Research Category 2019, American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Annual Assembly
  • Senior Resident of the Year 2017, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, UT Southwestern
Books & Publications
Research
  • Sports medicine in athletes with impairments/disabilities (adaptive/Para sports medicine)
  • Classification in Paralympic swimming
  • Concussion in youth/adolescents
  • Biomechanics and motion analysis in individuals with impairments/disabilities
  • Medical education

Clinical Focus

  • Sports medicine needs in athletes with impairments and disabilities
  • Pediatric sports medicine
  • Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine
  • Pediatric concussion
  • Pediatric limb difference/deficiency

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