About Melissa Esparza, MD

As a medical student, Melissa Esparza, MD, knew that she loved working with children and planned to become a pediatrician. But after a rotation in pediatric orthopedic surgery, she was hooked on fixing children's bones, joints and muscles.

"I was sold! This was the field for me - I loved being in the operating room and doing surgeries," says Dr. Esparza. "I love that pediatric orthopedics gives me the opportunity to improve a child's function and have a positive impact on the rest of their life. Kids are so resilient in so many ways and being able to see my patients bounce back from challenges and obstacles - whether it be a traumatic injury or a condition they were born with - is very inspiring and rewarding to be a part of."

For Dr. Esparza, building strong relationships with patients and their families is key to providing the highest quality of care.

"It is important to me to listen to families and understand their concerns, help them understand the diagnosis and treatment options, and come to a decision together about the best path forward for their child," she says.

Dr. Esparza's earliest exposure to the field of medicine came from listening to her father, an anesthesiologist, tell inspiring stories about his experiences with patients. She credits a host of mentors who have supported her at different stages in life and motivated her along this career path.

A graduate of the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine, Dr. Esparza completed her residency at the University of Arizona Medical Center and a fellowship at the Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children. At each place she trained, she appreciated the people who have encouraged her development as a physician. She is happy to be part of the Phoenix Children's team.

"The mission and values of Phoenix Children's align with my own, and I'm excited to be part of an institution that will allow me to provide excellent care to all patients no matter what their background is," she says.

Outside of work, Dr. Esparza enjoys spending time with family and friends, playing soccer, hiking and other outdoor activities.

Medical School / Education

UCSF School of Medicine, San Francisco, CA


University of Arizona Medical Center, Phoenix, AZ


Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, Dallas, TX


Dr. Esparza was wonderful and quickly got us in, evaluated my daughter, and provided the care she needed.

Was able to get an appt right away with Dr. Esparza, Phoenix Children's hospital was very flexible in working with me to get an appt with Dr. Esparza right away and at a location that is close to where I live. She was very professional and caring towards me and my daughter. We received excellent care from her.

Thank you for putting my kiddo back together damn near 100% perfect. Truly thankful for the results.