Dr Peter O’Farrell


Dr O’Farrell’s interest in hand and upper limb surgery began when he trained at Prof. Mennen’s Hand and Microsurgery Unit (est. in 1985 at Medunsa).

His experience at the unit propollled Dr O’Farrell into a successful career as a Hand and Upper Limb Specialist. During his career, he has worked alongside esteemed collegues from South Africa as well as from abroad, allowing him to deepen his expertise within his speciality. 

As a practicing surgeon, he has come to live by the adage that “good surgeons know how to operate, better ones when to operate, and the best when not to operate.”



More About

DR Peter O’Farrell

Hand and our upper limb confer us as humans, the greatest advantage, allowing us to firmly grasp and manipulate objects of many different shapes with ease. As a doctor, my special interest in the hand and upper limb lies in restoring its functionality when daily use thereof is restricted due to pain and injury.


  • 2017 – Shoulder Fellowship (Clinical)
    Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • 2016 – Complex Trauma and Limb Reconstruction Fellowship
    Walk-a-Mile Unitas Hospital, Complex Trauma and Limb Reconstruction Fellowship
  • 2016 – Specialist Orthopaedic Surgeon
    Fellow of the College of Orthopaedic Surgeons, South Africa
  • 2016 – Master of Medicine (MMed)
    University of KwaZulu Natal, Durban, South Africa
  • 2008 – Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor Surgery (MBBCh)
    University of the Witwatersrand Medical School, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • 2019 – TSF Essentials
  • 2019 – Vienna MasterClass Limb Reconstruction
  • 2019 – Arthrex Arthroscopy
  • 2018 – Advanced Shoulder Arthroscopy Arthrex Lab
  • 2017 – Advanced Shoulder Arthroscopy Arthrex Lab
  • 2017 – Musculo-Skeletal Ultrasound (Introductory and Cadaveric Courses)
  • 2016 – Orthofix Reconstruction Surgery Observership Course ORSO
  • 2015 – OrthoExact Advanced Circular Fixation Course
  • 2013 – AO Trauma Advanced (Peri-articular fractures)
  • 2012 – AO Trauma Basic
  • 2012 – Hand and Microvascular Course

Special interests

As a hand and upper limb specialist, Dr Peter O’Farrell has a keen medical interest in the field of limb reconstruction as it offers patients hope in getting back full or partial mobility after experiencing trauma.

Alongside tlimb reconstruction, Dr O’Farrell has a keen interest in detailed hand surgery that require finesse and attention to detail.

  • 2016 – Digital photography in Orthopaedics – Ethical Considerations
    South African Orthopaedic Journal. O’Farrell, PJR; Ferriera. N (SAOJ Mar 2016)
  • 2016 – Antibiotic prophylaxis for patients undergoing elective endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography
    Cochrane Database Syst Rev. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 6:10 (Brand, M. Bizos, D. O’Farrell, PJR.)
  • 2017 – Monofocal Distraction Treatment of Stiff Aseptic Tibial Nonunions with Hexapod Circular External Fixation
    Journal of Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction. Mohamed, N; O’Farrell, P; Barnard, AC; Birkholtz, FF. J Limb Lengthen Reconstr 2017;3:101-6
  • 2018 – The Tibial bayonet method of wound closure
    Strategies in Trauma and Limb Reconstruction. Mohamed, N; O’Farrell, P; Barnard, AC; Birkholtz, FF.
  • Awaiting Acceptance – Forearm reconstruction

Experts Who Care

Meet Dr Peter O’Farrell’s team

Teamwork in orthopaedics helps create common knowledge, fosters mutual understanding and the design of protocols and activities that maximise improved patient outcomes.


You will meet your anaethetist at your bedside before going into surgery where he/she will explain what you can expect as well as answer any questions you may have.

Occupational Therapists

We work with local occupational therapists who will be there to help you develop, recover, improve, as well as maintain the skills needed for daily living and working. 


With the help of your physiotherapist, you will receive massages, heat treatments and the like in order to recove the required range of motion after surgery.

I am very impressed with the care that I received from Dr O’Farrell. During our first consultation, he took the time to discuss and explain the cause of my condition as well as a possible treatment, while at the same time highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of the options available.

Together, we decided on a care path that included surgery and effective post-operative care. My experience was a very positive one, especially since the recovery period and the expectations of any discomfort were well-explained prior to the procedure. I can highly recommend Dr O’Farrell and his care team

Jo-Anne Otto

When one’s livelihood is in the balance, you seek medical advice from the best, we found that in Dr O’Farrell. His passion for his patients and his work is clearly evident. Taking the time to explain the two-step procedure and the recovery process put us at ease. But what really sealed the deal, was when Jaco had burnt his hand, while it was still in plaster, and I had popped an email to Dr O’Farrell about my fears of a possible infection due to the blisters. Dr O’Farrell responded to my email advising that he would be leaving a script at his office that I could collect.

I went to collect the script just as he was leaving the parking area, he stopped when he saw me and inquired about the wellbeing of his patient. Taking the time to show an interest in the wellbeing of a patient as well as the very successful recovery is the reason why we recommend Dr O’Farrell with the greatest confidence. He did such a good job that Jaco jokingly remarks that he wonders if he should have another scapholunate reconstruction done on the other hand, considering how his golf game has improved since the procedure.

Jaco and Monique Snyman