Peter A. Cole, MD

Peter A. Cole, MD
  • Practicing Specialty: Orthopaedic Surgery, Orthopaedics
  • Doctor
  • Secondary Language: Spanish
  • Male

Though born in Havre de Grace, Maryland, on the Chesapeake Bay, I am originally from a small New England town outside of Boston in Cape Cod. When I was ten, I moved with my family to Caracas, Venezuela, where I lived for almost four years. During this period, I developed an appreciation for many people's perspectives, having gone to an international school represented by students from over 50 countries. I also became fluent in Spanish while developing affection for the Latin culture, both gifts which would carry great life significance and influence professional decisions even to this day. We then moved to Lighthouse Point, Florida, where I attended high school and became motivated to pursue the field of medicine because of the impact of great life mentors.

I received my undergraduate degree from Emory University in Atlanta before taking a two-year research fellowship at Washington University in Saint Louis, the city from which my lovely wife, Nancy, hails. After this influential period in an elite diabetes and vascular research laboratory, I moved back to South Florida to attend the University of Miami School of Medicine. I subsequently fulfilled my internship and residency at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, before two sequential fellowships in Orthopaedic Traumatology at Brown, and then at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. I took my first academic position at the University of Mississippi School of Medicine in Jackson, where I began to develop new techniques for complex orthopedic pathology, as well as a profound sense of responsibility to indigent care and missions.

I was recruited by the University of Minnesota Department Chair in 2002 to build an orthopedic trauma division for the Regions Hospital Level I Trauma Center in Saint Paul. Within ten years, in collaboration with the University and HealthPartners, this initiative grew into a full-scale orthopedic department which could address every condition at the highest level, and which has become a regional powerhouse and national referral center for patients. From an original group of three orthopaedic surgeons, the team of over 20 orthopaedic physicians now has become a destination not only for patients, but for trainees from around the globe who want to witness and learn contemporary techniques in the field. Perhaps most influential to the field and patient care at large, has been the productive clinical research team and faculty at which ground-breaking discoveries have been realized to improve the lives of patients.

I am currently the Chief of Orthopaedics at Regions Hospital and Orthopaedic Section Head for HealthPartners. Though my medical and surgical practice is based at Regions Level I Trauma Center, I am a full-time University of Minnesota Professor. I have developed a worldwide reputation as an educator and researcher on advanced trauma topics including complex joint injuries, bone malunions and the broken pelvis. I have been recognized as a leading expert in minimally invasive fracture surgery, and have the largest experience on record for the treatment of scapula fractures. Underlying these clinical, administrative and investigative accomplishments is a passion for innovative problem solving, whether for patient conditions, surgical instruments, or challenges in healthcare delivery.

Outside of my practice, I love the rigor of sport, creative writing, working the garden, and returning to the Cape to fish the Atlantic. In addition, Nancy and I have founded and operate a medical ministry in the Peruvian Amazon called Scalpel At The Cross. This project has become a labor of love for our whole family including our three children, Danielle Christine, Peter Alexander, and Channing Evan. I am blessed indeed to call Minnesota our home, and to serve its wonderful people with my hands, mind, and heart!



  • Medical School: University of Miami Hospitals and Clinics 1990
  • Internship in Surgery: Brown University 1992
  • Residency in Orthopaedic Surgery: Brown University 1997
  • Fellowship in Orthopaedic Traumatology: Harborview Medical Center 1998
  • Certification: Am Bd of Orthopaedic Surgery