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Sydney Shoulder Research Institute - Current Fellows
2016 Fellow

David O'Briain


David O’Briain

2016 Fellow


Mr David O’Briain graduated with honours from University College Dublin in 2004.

In 2005 he moved to Australia for a year to work in Royal North Shore Hospital under Prof David Sonnabend and Dr Ben Cass.

He returned to Ireland to undertake the BST and HST national orthopaedic surgery training programmes.

He obtained a Masters degree in surgery from NUI Galway for his clinical research and obtained a further Masters degree in healthcare informatics from UCD. He was awarded FRCS(Tr&Orth) in 2014 and was appointed to the Irish Medical Council Specialist Register in 2016 after obtaining CCST certification.

He returned to Australia in 2016 to undertake an AOA accredited fellowship in shoulder and elbow surgery in the Sydney Shoulder Research Institute. He was exposed to an extensive range of elective and traumatic shoulder pathology and their treatment options under the expert tutelage of Doctors Ben Cass, Allan Young, Jeff Hughes and Prof David Sonnabend. This excellent experience, working with design surgeons and internationally renowned experts in the field continues to heavily influence his clinical and surgical practise.

The following year he moved to the USA and was awarded an ACGME accredited sports surgery fellowship from the University of South Florida. He then worked with Doctors Mark Frankle and Mark Mighell in the Florida Orthopaedic Institute, Tampa, earning a further ACGME accredited fellowship in shoulder and elbow surgery.

He returned to Ireland in 2018 to practice as a consultant in University Hospital Waterford and Kilcreene Regional Orthopaedic Hospital, Kilkenny. He now has a permanent position in Dublin as a trauma and orthopaedic consultant, with a subspecialty interest in surgery of the upper limb, in the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital and the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Cappagh.

Fellowship Story

The travel bug that brought my wife, Ruth and I together in Sydney in 2005 stuck us again, and so in June 2016 we set off from Dublin with our 3 kids in tow to Australia. We were excited by the opportunity of once again experiencing life in Sydney, which most certainly did not disappoint.

I was also thrilled to be commencing the much coveted SSRI fellowship training under Prof Sonnabend and Drs Cass, Young and Hughes. I learned an enormous amount during that year and still find that I revert to my Australian orthopaedic education on an almost daily basis. The impact of the SSRI fellowship in my career has been immense.

Our time in Sydney was a fantastic experience, both socially and professionally. While not learning from the experts, we were enjoying the beaches, bush walks and waterways of New South Wales and much much more. We enjoyed concerts in the zoo, hiking in the national parks, camping and kayaking and new year fireworks with friends and family. We had barbecues and birthday parties in parks and on rooftops and beaches and made friends and colleagues from around the globe. We loved watching our kids blossoming in such a positive environment and will always treasure our time in Sydney.