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James B. Bircher, DO

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Orthopedic Surgery, Board Eligible Adult Reconstruction Fellowship

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Areas of Focus

Hip Care
Knee Care

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Practice Overview

Dr. James Bircher is a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon specializing in primary joint replacement and revision joint replacement. His surgical interests include partial and total knee replacement, hip replacement utilizing minimally invasive hip approaches including direct anterior approach, as well as hip resurfacing. He also treats a variety of general orthopedic issues, traumatic injuries, and fractures including periprosthetic fractures. Dr. Bircher also participates in the TCO EXCEL Surgery and Recovery Program.

Dr. Bircher is a Twin Cities native and graduated from White Bear Lake Area High School. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where he also earned a spot on the baseball team as a “walk-on” and was named to the Academic All-Big Ten Team. He received his medical degree from Des Moines University, and then moved to Ohio where he completed his orthopedic surgery residency at the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic, serving as Chief Resident during his final year. After five years of residency, he continued his training and relationship with the Cleveland Clinic for his fellowship where he focused on joint replacement surgery.

Outside of work, Dr. Bircher is a husband and father of 4 boys. His wife is a physical therapist who also grew up in Minnesota, and they love spending time exploring the outdoors, swimming, fishing, biking, and competing in triathlons.

Learn More About Dr. Bircher

Clinical Interest

Hip care, including anterior approach hip replacement, hip replacement, hip resurfacing, and revision hip replacement

Knee care, including partial knee replacement, total knee replacement, and revision knee replacement


Board Eligible, American Osteopathic Board of Orthopedic Surgery

Adult Reconstruction, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH

Orthopedic Surgery, Cleveland Clinic – South Pointe Hospital, Cleveland, OH

Medical Degree
Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, Des Moines University, Des Moines, IA

Hospital & Surgery Center Affiliations

Eagan Orthopedic Surgery Center
Maple Grove Ambulatory Surgery Center
Maple Grove Hospital
North Memorial Health Hospital

Professional Affiliations

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
American Association of Hip & Knee Surgeons
American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopedics


karigabrielse x

Kari Gabrielse, PA-C
Certified Physician Assistant

Cassie O.
Care Coordinator

Patient Testimonials

October 25, 2023

Carl M.

I have nothing but good to say about Dr. Bircher and his entire care team! I was more than adequately educated about and prepared for my surgery beforehand. The entire process from beginning to end went smoothly. Considering what I expected, my pain was controlled and tolerable. I never would have thought in a thousand years that I would be driving again in two and a half weeks and getting around without my walker or cane in four weeks. Sixteen weeks out I feel great! I did not find the pre-surgery and post-surgery exercises at home burdensome in any way and doing them diligently really made my PT sessions productive.

So my left knee feels great after surgery and my right knee feels really good too. I’ll be doing what I can to try to keep it that way but, should my right knee deteriorate in the future I know who to contact to help me and I have no concerns about going through the process again if I have to.

September 11, 2023

Richard H.

Dr. James Bircher is a fantastic surgeon. He was very interested in all levels of my health from our first meeting. It has been 3 months since surgery and Dr. Bircher is still following up. The physical therapy department is also very educated, dedicated, and thorough. Three months ago it was hard to do almost everything. Today my knee is 100% better. Thank You Dr. Bircher and TCO!

September 11, 2023

Ronald M.

I had hip surgery in March 2023. The efficiency and communication during this time was excellent. The care team kept us informed before, during and after the  surgery. I am very happy with the great job Dr. Bircher did.

September 2, 2023

Robert L.

In early March of 2023, I fell on some ice and tore my quad. Dr. James Bircher performed surgery the next morning at North Memorial Hospital in Maple Grove. He was kind, open, and honest with me the whole way through. I’m 76 years old and the pain and healing process went amazingly well! Thanks to Dr. Bircher’s surgical skills, along with his staff. I seem to be doing just fine. My other remarks are about my physical therapists at TCO. Leah and Nichole were simply the best I could ask for!

September 1, 2023

Cheryl M.

Dr. Bircher is the most professional physician and with good bedside manner. I feel most comfortable talking with him. He did a great job with my right femur surgery. I’m very satisfied.

August 21, 2023

Malcolm C.

Dr. Bircher did revision surgery on May 25, 2023. He replaced a previous total knee replacement. He was thorough in his explanation of the procedure and the inherent risks. The surgery went well and the results border on miraculous. In 6 weeks I was climbing stairs with only minor difficulty and driving. In 8 weeks I was back to work and resuming most normal activities. Thank you Dr. Bircher.

August 6, 2023

Susan M.

Dr. Bircher is the best! I’d been fighting a knee replacement for years. When I met him in November, I knew my knee was pretty bad. We talked about knee replacement but he could tell I wasn’t ready. He told me I would know when I was ready. That reality hit me in February of this year. I couldn’t have asked for better results after the surgery. I was accepted into the TCO EXCEL Program, which I strongly suggest you try if you are able to. The nursing staff was exceptional at the hospital right after surgery as were the nurses at the Recovery Suites. The EXCEL nurse coordinator kept in contact with me to make sure all was well. Everyone involved was great.

Before I had my surgery, I told Dr. Bircher all I wanted was to be able to come back and tell him that I wish I had done the surgery sooner. I was happy to oblige! I am now scheduled for a total knee replacement on my other knee. I know not all surgeries have the same results but I am counting on Dr. Birchers skill to pull it out! Dr. Bircher always made sure he answered all my questions and spent as much time with me as I needed to feel comfortable. He is concerned, compassionate and very skilled. That is not something you find in too many doctors/surgeons these days. I look forward to a normal life again!

August 2, 2023

Marnette H.

Dr. Bircher performed a full knee replacement in April and upon completion of 12 weeks of physical therapy at TCO Brooklyn Park, I’m back to working out at my health club and enjoying my life again without knee pain. The staff at TCO are totally amazing in working with patients to obtain the necessary range of motion in our recovery.

July 28, 2023

Kristen M.

When I first saw Dr. Bircher, I was unable to walk without a walker. The pain was intense. I was scheduled for surgery within a month. The surgery went great. The day after surgery I was able to stand and walk without pain. I’m looking forward to Dr. Bircher doing a left knee replacement for me this fall. Dr. Bircher and his care team truly care about their patients.

July 26, 2023

Charles B.

Dr. Bircher is awesome. After falling and breaking my hip previously, a surgeon at another practice repaired my hip using three screws. That repair just didn’t heal properly. I was then referred to Dr. Bircher. He evaluated the situation and recommended a total hip replacement as a second surgery to remove the screws and put in a new hip. The recovery went as expected and I am now virtually pain free and recovering on schedule. Dr. Bircher has excellent “bedside manners” and is not only good at what he does, but seems to enjoy what he does. Thank you so much Dr. Bircher, you are my hero.

July 25, 2023

John A.

I was suffering with a swollen leg and agonizing pain for one full year until I met Dr. Bircher and his entire care team at TCO. I was seeing another physician and he thought everything was going okay and that it could take a full year to see progress.

I went to see Dr. Bircher and he took an X-ray of my knee. He saw right away what the issue was and assured me that he could help me. He arranged my surgery in less than one month. Two weeks after surgery I was feeling better with no pain. Now, three months later, I can jog around with no pain or swelling. I feel so much better now.

I was so depressed before seeing Dr. Bircher and his staff. I can teach Martial Arts again. I fully trust Dr. Bircher and I wish he could have helped with my previous orthopedic issues.

July 25, 2023

Nina C.

My experience with everyone at TCO, Dr. Bircher, Cassie, and the physical therapy team at TCO Woodbury was exceptional. My questions and concerns were answered promptly. I feel like I had a lot of support with my recovery. I would recommend anyone to see Dr. Bircher because my experience was excellent.

July 25, 2023

Lori S.

I had a total knee replacement in November 2022. It was a successful surgery and I was doing great until I slipped on ice four weeks after the surgery. I tore the quadricep muscle from the knee and was barely able to move. I was referred to Dr. James Bircher, a specialist in injury repair. Dr. Bircher was absolutely fantastic. He took the time to explain what had happened to my knee, explained the surgical repair procedure and possible outcomes. He really took the time to listen to me.

What really impressed me was that he was never rushed. I felt as if he listened to me and took the time to thoroughly understand the issues surrounding my injury. When I had questions after our initial meeting, he called me back that day. He met with me a second time before the surgery, just to alleviate my fears and concerns. When it was time for the actual surgery, three weeks after the injury, he took great care of me. He made sure I understood everything and that I was as comfortable as possible. The surgery was very successful and Dr. Bircher remained in close contact with me after the surgery, making sure I understood how the healing would go. He also called me at home once I was discharged from the hospital.

I believe Dr. Bircher is one of the best doctors/surgeons I have ever met. His caring compassion and his skills and expertise make for the perfect combination. I would highly, highly recommend Dr. Bircher!

July 25, 2023

Willie J.

Dr. Bircher and staff were professional, personable and knowledgeable. I would recommend him!

July 17, 2023

Jodi O.

I was referred to Dr. Bircher for my hip joint infection. He was very compassionate about my situation and proceeded to fix the infection. It started with a spacer that included antibiotics and two different IV antibiotics for 6 weeks. We made sure infection was cleared up and then proceeded with my second total hip replacement. I am optimistic and feel good about this one. Thank you Dr. Bircher.

July 11, 2023

Kathleen M.

I had been dealing with knee pain for years. It finally got to the point where cortisone was not bringing any relief and I needed to walk with a cane. Before my surgery, I could not walk very far. My knee was so unstable and walking in my yard was impossible. Dr. Bircher was highly recommended to me by another TCO surgeon (Dr. Cammack, a foot and ankle specialist). Even though I was nervous about having surgery, Dr. Bircher’s kindness and attention to detail made me feel it was time to do it. Surgery went great, and I could tell right away that my knee was better. I had not felt that stable on my knee with no stabbing pain in so long.

I went through the EXCEL program and I would highly recommend going that route if you can. The staff at EXCEL Care Suites were so great! If you are looking for a knee replacement surgeon, I would highly recommend Dr. James Bircher. I cannot say enough great things about my experience. Why did I wait so long? It just took me finding the right surgeon and his team.

May 1, 2023

Ruthie A.

I recently had a total knee replacement with Dr. Bircher in March of 2023. He explained everything clearly and answered all my questions. He was unhurried and gave his undivided attention. He was also very accommodating to not only myself, but to my family. Dr. Bircher is clearly a skilled surgeon who cares about his patients.

April 19, 2023

Bonnie M.

I had troubles with bone-on-bone knee pain. I went through an exam to determine the requirements for a knee replacement. I met with Dr. Bircher and he explained the whole process and procedure. He successfully repaired my right knee and I am completely satisfied with the great care and post-op therapy. Dr. Bircher’s friendly attitude, positivity, and confidence helped with the process. I am now considering when to have my left knee replacement done too. Thank you, Dr. Bircher!

April 6, 2023

Kim L.

When I came to TCO Maple Grove with a painful hip condition, I had “muddled through” years of pain. I couldn’t walk normal distances or stairs without holding on to someone or something to steady myself. Activities like dressing, driving, getting in and out of a seat were challenging. I passed on social gatherings that involved walking. When I saw Dr. Bircher and his staff, he asked me specific questions about my symptoms, my lifestyle, and my goals for an improved lifestyle. Then he and his staff gave me their diagnosis and goals to aim for. I also had other health issues related to exercise, blood pressure, and breathing. He worked with my other doctors to coordinate the timing, treatments, and specific surgical requirements to assure my safety and a positive outcome. It worked! I am enjoying activities again and I am improving at a pace that’s comfortable for me, based on my goals and abilities. Don’t wait. See Dr. Bircher ASAP if you are in pain. Life can be fun!

March 24, 2023

Debra R.

Dr. Bircher truly cares about his patients. He took his time with me, answering my questions before surgery and afterwards. I am very satisfied with how my hip surgery turned out. I chose Dr. Bircher because he has a genuine concern for his patients.

March 14, 2023

Yat L.

Dr. Bircher is a very nice physician with warm and friendly characteristics. I am very appreciative for his good work and for taking care of me.

March 1, 2023

Bonnie B.

I was referred to TCO by my primary care doctor and chiropractor. My leg and knee hurt so much, I could hardly walk. I saw Dr. Bircher at TCO and what a great surgeon he is. From my first visit to after surgery, he always explained what to expect with my total knee replacement. I am now three months after surgery and my knee is doing great. Dr. Bircher said there would be pain and there was! But now it is so much better. That is all in the past. Thank you, Dr. Bircher.

February 15, 2023

Eldean J.

I fell in October and was transferred by ambulance to the emergency room. I found out I had a broken hip and I had surgery the next day with Dr. Bircher. Since surgery, I haven’t had any problems with my hip and it was a quick recovery. I had two follow-up visits with Dr. Bircher and I explained my knee problems. After looking at the x-rays, he explained the options to me. Dr. Bircher is a good listener and is very good at calming me down! He was very thorough. I would definitely recommend Dr. Bircher.

December 23, 2022

Debbie L.

My husband went to see Dr. Bircher for a consult. I would give Dr. Bircher an A+ for bed side manners. His personality was so gentle. I really appreciated his caring attitude. We will be back.

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