Here are this week’s Accolades, a roundup of some of the honors and accomplishments of College of Medicine and UAMS faculty, staff, residents, fellows and students I’ve heard about recently!
Back to School Essentials
UAMS and Arkansas Children’s recently collaborated with the Arkansas Department of Health and the Arkansas Department of Education on two essential back-to-school guides for schools and families – the COVID-19 safety-focused Arkansas Ready to Learn Healthy School Guide and the behavioral health-focused Helping Students Cope Guide. Many UAMS and Arkansas Children’s team members were a part of this initiative (as listed in this PDF), including faculty from the College of Medicine departments of Pediatrics, Family and Preventive Medicine and Psychiatry.
Dr. Jose Romero, Dr. Cam Patterson and Marcy Doderer, FACHE, served with Commissioner of Education Johnny Key on the Governance Committee. Dr. Stephanie Gardner and Dr. Rick Barr served as Working Group Co-Chairs. Dr. Marisha DiCarlo, Dr. Angela Scott and Dr. Barr chaired key subcommittees. Other committee members making important contributions were Dr. Nikki Edge, Dr. Arlo Kahn, Tyra Larkin, Dr. Eddie Ochoa, Dr. Mark Williams, Dr. Jill Fussell, Dr. Sufna John, Allison Martin, LMSW, and Dr. Jessica Snowden.
This was an enormous undertaking in service to our state, and we are grateful to you all.
Novel Pain Study
Congratulations to Neurosurgery Residency graduate Dr. Heather Pinckard-Dover, current resident Dr. Angela Palmer and Dr. Erika Petersen, Professor and Residency Program Director, on the publication of their paper focusing on the successful treatment of a teenager with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS). The team reviewed neuromodulation as a treatment for CRPS and discussed their novel use of dorsal root ganglion (DRS) stimulation for a teen who experienced debilitating, unexplained pain and swelling of the ankle after a sports injury. The study was published in Neuromodulation: Technology at the Neural Interface.
Cancer Institute Honoree
Congratulations to Dr. Frits van Rhee, Professor of Internal Medicine and Clinical Director of the Myeloma Center, on receiving the Distinguished Honoree Award from the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute Department of Volunteer Services and Auxiliary. Dr. van Rhee is internationally recognized as a leading expert in blood cancers, particularly Castleman disease. During a virtual ceremony, colleagues and guests honored him for helping the Myeloma Center earn a worldwide reputation for innovative research and treatment programs.
Deciphering Data Analytics
Dr. Hoda Hagrass, Assistant Professor of Pathology, has been appointed to a working group of the American Association of Clinical Chemistry (AACC) that will develop a glossary to help AACC members and laboratory support staff understand the technology and applications of data analytics and machine-learning to laboratory medicine. The committee will help overcome the impediment of ambiguous language usage in popular discussions of the data analytics space. Dr. Hagrass serves as Medical Director for the Clinical Chemistry and Immunology Laboratories at UAMS and the Clinical Chemistry and Metabolic Diseases Laboratories at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. Thank you for sharing your expertise at the national level, Dr. Hagrass!
A recent patient-survey comment speaks volumes about the exemplary and compassionate care that Dr. Corey Montgomery, Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, provides for his orthopaedic oncology patients. “Dr. Corey Montgomery is the best doctor I have ever been to,” the patient wrote. “His bedside manner, compassion, kindness, and the ability to listen are unmatched. His intelligence is exceptional in so many areas. My wife and I think the world of him and appreciate all he’s done for us. He saved my life. He has become our friend. He has given us hope. We’ve told many people about Dr. Montgomery.”
EM National Honors
A shout-out to two outstanding Department of Emergency Medicine colleagues who have been selected for competitive national education programs in the field of academic emergency medicine. Dr. Meredith Von Dohlen, the department’s inaugural Medical Education fellow, was accepted in the Harvard Macy Institute Program for Post-Graduate Trainees: Future Academic Clinical Educators Course. And Dr. Jason Arthur, Assistant Professor, was selected for the Society of Academic Emergency Medicine (SAEM) Advanced Research Methodology Evaluation and Design (ARMED) course. Congratulations!
Apheresis & Telehealth
Congratulations to Dr. Tina Ipe, Associate Professor of Pathology and Director of Transfusion Medicine, on the publication of a concise review in the Journal of Clinical Apheresis. The manuscript, “Understanding the basic technologies and apheresis medicine practice models,” is part of a position paper for the American Society for Apheresis and highlights the use of telehealth technologies in therapeutic apheresis.
Dr. Sarah Blossom, Associate Professor in the Allergy and Immunology Section of the Department of Pediatrics, recently served as an invited virtual discussion panelist for a National Academy of Sciences workshop, “Predicting Human Health Effects from Environmental Exposures: Applying Translatable and Accessible Biomarkers of Effect.” Dr. Blossom’s work in the Arkansas Children’s Research Institute focuses on how environmental exposures, particularly the solvent and common environmental pollutant trichloroethylene (TCE), alter CD4+ T cell function in the immune system. Great work!
Ophthalmology Video Standout
The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) regularly receives hundreds of eye surgery videos to potentially share on the AAO website for educational purposes. Dr. Riley Sanders, a fellow in the Department of Ophthalmology, has become quite a fixture on the site with several of his videos accepted and posted. His most recent “Editors’ Choice” videos (available here and here) are of sophisticated surgeries he performed with Associate Professor Dr. Sami Uwaydat.
Above & Beyond
A patient recently traveled from a far corner of the state for a complex surgery, and the anesthesia team determined a specific procedure would provide ideal post-operative pain relief. However, this case presented challenges due to lack of a dedicated neuro-imaging scan to ensure the safety of this option. Dr. Memoona Mian, a Neuroradiology fellow in the Department of Radiology, and Dr. Rudy Van Hemert, Interim Chief of Neuroradiology, quickly stepped in, evaluated a recent alternate scan from an outside facility, and were able to provide accurate and timely information to the anesthesia team. As Dr. Matthew Spond, Associate Professor of Anesthesiology, said when relaying this story, Dr. Mian and Dr. Van Hemert went above and beyond to provide the best possible care for this patient. Bravo!
Alpha Omega Alpha Inductees
With the motto “Worthy to serve the suffering,” Alpha Omega Alpha, the national medical honor society, recognizes exceptional students, faculty, house staff and alumni who embrace professionalism, scholarship, leadership and service. Congratulations to the newest members elected by the Arkansas Chapter of AOA!
COM juniors elected in Spring 2020: Muhammad Abu-Rmaileh, Amanda Catherine Ederle, Morgan Alleabelle Gongola, Jared T. Gowen, Justin Klucher, Brianna Laferney, Brandi M. Mize, Austin G. Morgan, Madison Brooks Morris, Katelyn M. Ragland, Michael B. Richardson, Jennifer Elizabeth Saccente, Connor Wilson, Taylor Winn, Courtney Wright (These students are now seniors. The next election of seniors will occur later this fall.)
Faculty elected in Academic Year 2019-2020: Dr. Nahed O. El-Hassan, Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology; Dr. Franscesca Miquel-Verges, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology; Dr. Emily Smith, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Hospital Medicine
Housestaff elected in Academic Year 2019-2020: Dr. Katie Guess, Pediatrics Residency, 2020 graduate; Dr. Morgan Moore, Medicine-Pediatrics Residency, now on faculty, Division of General Internal Medicine; Dr. John Pagteilan, now PGY5, Surgery Residency; Dr. Anna Nanigian Witt, now Chief Resident, Internal Medicine Residency
Alumni elected in Academic Year 2019-20: Dr. Gregory Bledsoe, M.D. ’99, Arkansas Surgeon General; Dr. Clare Campbell Nesmith, M.D. ’00, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology
Accolades will return the week after next, September 16!