Our Team
Elizabeth Wellsandt, PT, DPT, PhD OCS
Principal Investigator, Physical Therapist
Dr. Wellsandt is an Orthopaedic Certified Specialist of Physical Therapy and an Assistant Professor in the Division of Physical Therapy Education at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. She earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of Nebraska Medical center and PhD in Biomechanics and Movement Science from the University of Delaware. She was awarded the New Investigator Fellowship Training Initiative by the Foundation for Physical Therapy in 2017 and serves on the executive committee of the Biomechanics Special Interest Group of the American Physical Therapy Association. Dr. Wellsandt’s research interests are in biomechanical and functional outcomes in individuals with knee injuries, with a primary interest in the influence of those factors on the development of osteoarthritis. She has authored many peer-reviewed publications on topics of ACL injury and post-traumatic knee osteoarthritis, and presented her research findings at many national and international meetings. Faculty bio

Ryan Arnold, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon
Dr. Arnold is a Board-Certified Orthpaedic Surgeon at OrthoNebraska (Omaha, NE). He earned his medical degree from the University of Nebraska Medical Center where his also completed his Orthopaedic Residency. He went on to complete a Sports Medicine and Cartilage Reconstruction fellowship at Atlanta Sports Medicine under the direction of Dr. Scott D. Gillogly. During this time, Dr. Arnold served as an Assistant Team Physician for the Atlanta Falcons (NFL) and Atlanta Thrashers (NHL). Dr. Arnold’s practice is specialized in knee-related injuries, with extensive experience in ACL reconstruction and ACL revision, multi-ligament reconstruction, meniscal repair, cartilage repair, and patella dislocations and stabilization procedures. Dr. Arnold has research interests in cartilage disorders and has co-authored and presented research on the subject at national and international meetings.

Matt Tao, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon
Dr. Tao is an Orthopaedic Surgeon and Assistant Professor in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He earned his medical degree from Northwestern University and completed residency at Duke University. He spent a year subspecializing during a Sports Medicine and Shoulder Surgery Fellowship at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. During that time, Dr. Tao helped care for the New York Giants and New York Red Bulls in addition to many clinical and research endeavors. Dr. Tao has a special interest in complex knee injuries - ACL tears, multi-ligament trauma, cartilage lesions, meniscal issues and malalignment. He also specializes in athletic shoulder and elbow injuries. Dr. Tao has research interests in improving outcomes in knee surgery and allowing active patients the ability to return to sports safely and continue into the future.

Melissa Manzer, MD
Musculoskeletal Radiologist
Dr. Manzer is a Board-Certified Radiologist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Radiology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. She earned her medical degree from St. Louis University. She completed her residency in Diagnostic Radiology and fellowship in Musculoskeletal Radiology from the University of Nebraska Medical center. Dr. Manzer specializes in musculoskeletal and breast imaging. She has research interests in early osteoarthritis development after knee injuries and in post-operative evaluation of knee and shoulder replacements.

Balasrinivasa Sajja, PhD
Dr. Sajja is an Associate Research Professor in the Department of Radiology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He earned his Master’s in Applied Mathematics and PhD in Mathematics with a focus on quantitative methods for MRI relaxometry from the Indian Institute of Technology in India. Dr. Sajja then completed a post-doctoral fellowship in quantitative MRI at the University of Texas Medical School (Houston, TX). His research focuses on methods for computing MR parameters related to relaxometry, diffusion tensor imaging, spectroscopy, fMRI and perfusion imaging. Dr. Sajja has authored and co-authored many peer-reviewed publications and is funded on several university- and NIH-funded grants.

Christopher Wichman, PhD
Biostatistician
Dr. Wichman is a Biostatistician and Assistant Professor in the Department of Biostatistics at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He completed his Masters in Statistics and PhD in Biostatistics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Dr. Wichman has expertise in experimental design, multivariate analysis, multi-dimensional scaling, bi-dimensional regression and linear and non-linear mixed models and is involved in several NIH-funded studies.