Dr. Javier Reto

orthopedic spine surgeon dr. javier reto operates on patient

Dr. Reto and his wife, Dr. Natalie Reto, dance the Salsa for charity. Click here to watch and fast-forward to a minute past the one-hour mark.

Read Dr. Reto’s article “Cervical Disc Replacement M6,” appearing in the July 2020 issue of Inside Medicine. Click here to read.

Personal Experiences Give Dr. Reto Deep Empathy For Patients.

One of the first things patients notice about Dr. Javier Reto is that he has a deep-seated compassion for their pain and suffering. The reason? Dr. Reto knows first-hand what his patients are going through.


After graduating from college, Dr. Reto was visiting family in Peru when he fell through the roof of a house, landing two and a half stories below. The fall resulted in a fractured spine and wrist and he was flighted back to the states where he underwent surgery. It was during his recovery and rehab that Dr. Reto realized his calling to go to medical school and then on to an orthopedic spine surgery specialty.


“The path to my becoming a doctor all stems from my own personal experience with that surgery and my journey to recovery,” explained Dr. Reto. “Because I’ve dealt with many of the same things I see my patients dealing with, I have a special empathy for them.”


Dr. Reto was born in Peru and moved to the United States with his family when he was five years old. A teacher in Peru, his father came to the U.S. with $200 in his pocket and a wife and two small children to support. Dr. Reto watched his well-educated father wash dishes and do whatever else it took to put food on the table.


“My father is my hero and I am so thankful to him for the opportunities his hard work has afforded me,” Dr. Reto said. “His work ethic was amazing and I’d like to think I learned that quality from him.”


Dr. Reto’s favorite quote is from Sir Isaac Newton: “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”


“This quote always reminds me of my father…in my eyes, he’s a giant.”


Dr. Reto double-majored in Chemistry and Applied Mathematics and earned a Bachelor’s degree in both from the University of Chicago. After his accident and subsequent surgeries and recovery, Dr. Reto earned a medical degree from the University of Chicago Medical School. He went on to complete an orthopedic surgery residency at the University of Chicago, and then a premiere spine fellowship with pioneers of spine deformity and scoliosis surgery at the Twin Cities Spine Center in Minneapolis. He is board certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery.


Dr. Reto has extensive experience with deformity and degenerative conditions of the spine, with emphasis on reconstruction after spine fusion. He is dedicated to giving his patients the latest technologies and techniques that offer both quicker recovery and long-term success.


“I’d like my patients to know that with me they will get compassionate spine care from a passionate surgeon who has the unique perspective of having personally recovered from two prior lumbar fusions,” said Dr. Reto. “One of the greatest things for me is to see what an amazing difference you can make in people’s quality of life with the right treatment.”


Dr. Reto is married to Dr. Natalie Reto who is a chef, entrepreneur, and anesthesiologist. Together they are raising three great children.