Rare set of conjoined twins successfully separated in 24-hour surgery by Wong and team
Congratulations to Dr Granger Wong and the rest of the amazing team of more than 30 experts: surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists and other key surgical staff who planned meticulously to achieve this wonderful outcome. The North Highlands (Sacramento County) twins were born connected at the head, a condition called craniopagus twins. Conjoined twins are already extremely rare, but craniopagus twins are even more so. Only two percent of conjoined twins are born fused at the head. Craniopagus twins occur in approximately one in every 2.5 million births. The 24-hour surgery took place in the UC Davis Children’s Surgery Center in an operating room that was custom-built for this level of surgical complexity. This was the first separation of conjoined twins at UC Davis Children’s Hospital. The full article can be found HERE and the 5-part video series can be watched HERE.
Jurkovich honored as Distinguished Professor.
Dr. Gregory “Jerry” Jurkovich has been recognized as a UC Davis Distinguished Professor. The title is given to recognize outstanding faculty in the professorial series who have achieved the highest level of scholarship, particularly scholars whose work has been internationally recognized and acclaimed and whose teaching is excellent. Dr. Jurkovich joins our Chair, Dr. Diana Farmer, in holding this title. Congratulations, Dr. Jurkovich!
Godoy joins the Section of General Thoracic Surgery
We are happy to share the news that this July, Luis Godoy, M.D., joined the Section of General Thoracic Surgery! Dr. Godoy is a recent graduate of the Integrated Cardiothoracic Surgery Residency at UC Davis where he developed an interest in Thoracic Surgical Oncology as well as minimally invasive thoracic surgery. While in training, Dr. Godoy was awarded the American Association for Thoracic Surgery’s advanced Surgical Robotics Fellowship and now holds the designation of Robotic Surgeon. In addition to his faculty position at UC Davis. Dr. Godoy also holds an appointment at the Sacramento (Mather) VA Medical Center. With this appointment, Dr. Godoy will provide veterans with the highest level quality care that they deserve. His research interests include oncologic clinical trials and ways to eliminate health disparities. Born in Mexico, Dr. Godoy immigrated to the United States at a young age. He was raised in Solano County in Northern California. He is one of only a few “true Aggies”, as he has completed his undergraduate studies, medical school, and residency all at UC Davis!
Cooke accepted as Associate Member in American College of Surgeons Academy of Master Surgeon Educators
The American College of Surgeons Academy of Master Surgeon Educators™ has been created to continually advance the science and practice of education—teaching, learning, assessment, and scholarship—across all specialties of surgery through innovation and promotion of the highest achievements in lifelong learning. Approved by the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Board of Regents in 2014, the Academy has been charged to identify and recruit innovators and thought leaders committed to education and to translate innovation into action. The aim of the new ACS Academy of Master Surgeon Educators is to recognize and assemble a cadre of renowned master surgeon educators who will work closely with the ACS Division of Education, to advance the science and practice of avant-garde surgical education and training. Members of the Academy are selected through a rigorous peer-review process and induction into this prestigious academy is a high honor. Academy members actively engage in activities to address certain goals of the Academy. Membership in the Academy will be open to master surgeon educators from across the surgical specialties. We congratulate Dr. David Tom Cooke, M.D. on his new role as Associate Member of this prestigious group!
Chen now Board Certified Medical Illustrator
After a 3+ year certification process, Dr. Sarah Chen is now officially a Board Certified Medical Illustrator (CMI)! The Board of Certification of Medical Illustrators administers a certification program as a recognizable means to signify a practitioner's current competency in the profession. A Certified Medical Illustrator (CMI) has passed examinations dealing with business practices, ethics, biomedical science, and drawing skills, and has undergone a rigorous portfolio review. Competencies are maintained by meeting continuing education requirements and must be renewed every five years. The certification program is based on standards established by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). Dr. Chen is the first resident to obtain CMI certification in UC Davis history! Congratulations Dr. Chen!
Humphries accepted to iASPIRE leadership program
Congratulations to Dr. Misty Humphries on her acceptance as a fellow in the second cohort of the NSF-funded Aspire Alliance’s Institutional Change Network (IChange) IAspire Leadership Academy. IAspire Leadership Academy is intended to develop and train the next generation of underrepresented (URG) leaders in STEM higher education. This program equips fellows with skills to lead more effectively in an increasingly complex environment and gives confidence to influence institutional transformation. The IAspire Leadership Academy is a structured development experience over the course of two years; the first year focuses on core curriculum and the second year is an in-residence action project experience utilizing the new knowledge and skills gained.
Callcut nominated for appointment as Acting Chief Research Informatics Officer
We are pleased to announce that Rachael Callcut, M.D., M.S.P.H., F.A.C.S., a nationally recognized expert in the field of Data Science, has been nominated for appointment as Acting Chief Research Informatics Officer, effective June 1, 2020. In this role, Dr. Callcut will be responsible for evolving and directing the research informatics that supports UC Davis School of Medicine in partnership with the School of Nursing. She will also be responsible for establishing, advancing and implementing the clinical research informatics strategy and enterprise research data governance for UC Davis clinicians, researchers, faculty and staff, and representing UC Davis in regional and national research informatics communities. Dr. Callcut joined the UC Davis School of Medicine faculty on March 1, 2020 as the inaugural Vice Chair of Clinical Sciences in the Department of Surgery and the Director of Trauma Research. She is a practicing clinician double board certified in General Surgery and Surgical Critical Care. She has held funding in Clinical Informatics from the NIH since 2015, including a now completed K01 Mentored Career Development Award through the NIH Big Data to Knowledge Initiative and currently holds a R01 focused on Artificial Intelligence. Dr. Callcut also is the current recipient of research funding from the Department of Defense and the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine. Prior to joining UC Davis, she served as Director of Data Science for the Center for Digital Health Innovation at UC San Francisco, where she was recognized as a surgeon-scientist with significant extramural funding from federal and industry sources, and as an innovator (licensed technology/provisional patents) in research and teaching mentorship. Dr. Callcut has also held several institutional and national leadership positions in the research domain. Congratulations to Dr. Callcut!
Mell elected to membership in American Surgical Association
Congratulations to Dr. Matthew Mell for being elected to membership in the American Surgical Association. As a premier academic surgical society, the American Surgical Association strives for excellence and leadership in science, education, and patient care while promoting diversity, integrity, and innovation. The American Surgical Association was founded in 1880 and is the nation's oldest and most prestigious surgical organization. Its members include the nation’s most prominent surgeons from the country's leading academic medical institutions, many of whom are Chairs of the Departments of Surgery at these institutions. Membership also includes leading surgeons from around the world, making it much more than an American association. The primary mission of the Association is to be the premier organization for surgical science and scholarship and to provide a national forum for presenting the developing state of the art and science of general and sub-specialty surgery and the elevation of the standards of the medical/surgical profession. This mission is accomplished primarily by conducting an annual scientific meeting consisting of selected presentations containing the most current information available on clinical and research topics related to surgery or surgical specialties, including studies on outcomes, practice of surgery and ethical and other issues that affect its practice. Congratulations to Dr. Mell!
Brown featured by Women in Thoracic Surgery
Congratulations to Lisa M. Brown, M.D. for being featured in this months "Today's Women in CT Surgery" article by the Women in Thoracic Surgery (WTS). WTS was founded in 1986 with a mission to enhance the quality of medical care given to patients of its members, to mentor young women thoracic surgeons, to enhance the education of patients about heart and lung diseases and to enhance educational opportunities for women thoracic surgeons. WTS was formed when Leslie J. Kohman, M.D., of the Department of Surgery at SUNY Upstate Medical University in New York and the first woman elected to the Residency Review Committee for Thoracic Surgery, organized an informal breakfast for women thoracic surgeons at the STS 24th Annual Meeting. Only eight women were in attendance but their enthusiasm resulted in future annual breakfast and luncheon meetings during subsequent meetings of The Society of Thoracic Surgeons. Membership increased steadily when the association began outreach efforts to include residents and set goals to provide support to women in training, disseminate information about thoracic surgery residencies, faculty positions and research opportunities, and interact with other groups of professional women. We are proud that Dr Lisa Brown has been featured this month. Congratulations!
Halabi American Society of Colon & Rectal Surgeons Spotlight
The American Society of Colon & Rectal Surgeons (ASCRS) has recognized Wissam J. Halabi in their April 2020 ASCRS Young Surgeon News Spotlight. The ASCRS is a professional medical society that represents 3,500 physicians and other health care providers interested in the specialty of colon and rectal surgery. ASCRS members are dedicated to advancing and promoting the science and practice of the treatment of patients with diseases and disorders affecting the colon and rectum. Congratulations to Dr Halabi for his recent spotlight!
Gholami awarded Association for Academic Surgery's 2020 Roslyn Faculty Award
Dr. Sepideh Gholami has just been awarded the Association for Academic Surgery's (AAS) Joel J. Roslyn Faculty Research Award at this year's Florida conference. The intent of this award — which is supported by the Journal of Surgical Research and its publisher, Elsevier Science — is to provide early-career research support to junior faculty members of the AAS. The winners of this award receives $50,000 for one year to be used for direct-cost expenditures incurred in the conduct of the proposed research project, an award certificate presented at the AAS Awards Ceremony during the Academic Surgical Congress, and their name published in the AAS blog The Academic Surgeon, and on the AAS Web Site. Congratulations to Dr. Gholami!
Troppmann finishes her tenure as UCD Quarter Century Club President
Dr. Kathrin Troppmann has just completed her tenure as the UC Davis Quarter Century Club (QCC) President. The QCC is the UC Davis-wide organization of all employees from both the Sacramento and Davis campuses who have worked at UC Davis for 25 years or more. It is noteworthy that UC Davis is the only UC campus that formally recognizes its employees’ long-term commitment to the University of California. Dr. Troppmann had been selected, from among the 200 QCC New Initiates of 2018, to serve as the QCC President for a one-year term. As the outgoing President, Dr. Troppmann chaired the recent 80th Annual QCC Meeting and Dinner. Before handing over her gavel to the next President, Dr. Troppmann individually welcomed each new QCC member who had reached the 25-year mark over the preceding year. Dr. Troppmann then introduced Chancellor May who honored the 80th QCC Annual meeting with his presence. Being an avid collector of Star Trek memorabilia, Chancellor May had donated some vintage items from his personal collection for the raffle. Chancellor May then introduced the employees who had reached 50 years of active service with UC Davis. During Dr. Troppmann’s tenure as QCC President, she had started a new philanthropic initiative for the QCC members, “QCC in the Community”. Dr. Troppmann provided the opportunity for the QCC members to volunteer with the River City Food Bank in order to strengthen the ties with our community. In November of 2019, many QCC volunteers gathered at the River City Food Bank to prepare and to distribute food to the neediest members in our community. Dr. Troppmann encourages all Department of Surgery members who receive their initiation letter from the QCC to engage with this organization that has a longstanding tradition on our campus and to participate in its new QCC philanthropic endeavors.
Chancellor May awards Prof Wang as 2019-2020 Chancellor Fellow
Professor Aijun Wang has been selected to be a 2019-2020 Chancellor Fellow in support of his outstanding research, teaching, and service activities. The Chancellor Fellows Program was established in 2000 to honor the achievements of outstanding faculty members early in their careers. Based on records and information submitted by Associate Dean Ted Wun, the quality and significance of Professor Wang's research and teaching has merited this honorary recognition. Congratulations to Professor Aijun Wang!
Department of Surgery faculty featured in Sacramento Magazine's Top Docs 2019
Congratulations to the 20 Department of Surgery faculty featured as one of Sacramento Magazine’s Top Docs for 2019!
Farmer elected to ACS Board of Regents
The Board of Governors of the American College of Surgeons elected Dr. Diana Farmer, Chair, of the Department of Surgery, as one of the newest members of the Board of Regents. A Fellow of the College since 1998, Dr. Farmer has served on many ACS committees and governing bodies. Most recently, she was Chair of the Board of Governors (2016−2018). Previously, she was Vice-Chair of the Board of Governors (2015−2016), and a member of the Board of Governors Executive Committee (2015−2018). She chaired the Board of Governors Quality Pillar (2014−2016) and served on the Board of Governors Bylaws Committee (2016−2017). She served on the Advisory Council for Pediatric Surgery (Pediatric Surgery Liaison to the ACS Program Committee, 2006−2012; Ex Officio member, 2012−2018) and co-chaired the Council of Advisory Council Representatives (2006−2012). She has also served on several ACS committees.
Congratulations to our Clinician Health and Wellbeing Award recipients
Congratulations to our Clinician Health and Wellbeing Award recipients: Drs. Amanda Kirane and Edgardo Salcedo and Residents, Drs. Amanda Phares and Maggie Spruce as emerging leaders who are developing innovative ways to enhance Clinician Health and wellbeing at UC Davis Health. A Clinician Health and Wellbeing Summit is scheduled for November 13 where our physicians will be awarded.
2019 Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day October 16
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery are hosting Breast Reconstruction Awareness (BRA) Day on October 16. Expert faculty from Plastic Surgery, Surgical Oncology, Medical Oncology and Radiation Oncology will speak on the advances in breast cancer reconstruction and resources available to patients, family and the community. Watch our video to hear from our experts.
Chief of Vascular Surgery Mell Facebook Live Conversation
Watch the Facebook Live conversation we recorded on Wednesday (9/25) with Matthew Mell, chief of vascular surgery and director of the vascular center at UC Davis Health. As part of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) Awareness Month in September, we discussed the symptoms and treatments of PAD and other vascular conditions, as well as Dr. Mell’s comprehensive team dedicated to finding new ways to address PAD. Visit the UC Davis Health Facebook page for all future (and past) Facebook Live conversations with our experts.
Gholami 2020 recipient of Association of Women Surgeons Fellowship Grant
Congratulations to Clark for recent Annals of Surgery publication
Congratulations to Dr. James Clark, General Surgery Resident for his recent publication in the Annals of Surgery for his article titled Do the 2018 Leapfrog Group Minimal Hospital and Surgeon Volume Thresholds for Esophagectomy Favor Specific Patient Demographics?
New Surgery Faculty 2019
Dr. Victoria Lyo will be joining the division of Foregut, Metabolic, and Minimally Invasive Surgery on August 1. Dr. Lyo completed her medical degree and residency at UCSF followed by a Master of Translational Medicine from a joint program between UC Berkeley and UCSF. She recently completed her advanced GI and minimally invasive surgery fellowship at Oregon Health and Science University. Her broad training includes a broad case mix, including laparoscopic and robotic complex foregut, bariatric (bypass and sleeve), three-field esophagectomies, solid organ resection (adrenal, spleen, distal pancreas), hernias, and advanced endoscopic procedures.
Dr. Alana Beres will be joining the division of Pediatric Surgery on September 1 from her current appointment as Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery at University of Texas, Southwestern Medical School. Dr. Beres completed her medical degree from McGill University followed by residency at University of Saskatchewan in Pediatrics, and in General Surgery at Tufts University and McGill University. She later received a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology from Harvard University. Her training also includes her fellowships at University of Toronto in Pediatrics Trauma Surgery and Critical Care, at the Children’s National Medical Center in Pediatrics Surgical Innovation, and at the Montreal Children’s Hospital in Pediatric Surgery.
Dr. Andrew Li will be joining the division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, specifically in hand and microsurgery, on September 1. Dr. Li received his medical degree from UCSD School of Medicine followed by residency in general surgery at UCLA Harbor Medical Center. He completed fellowships at UCLA in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and at UC Irvine in Hand and Upper Extremity Microsurgery. He also is the co-founder of Second-Breath.org which distributes unused and unexpired medical supplies form private donors to community clinics and health centers in the greater Los Angeles area.
Dr. Tanya Rinderknecht will be joining the division of Trauma, Acute Care Surgery and Surgical Critical Care on August 1. Dr. Rinderknecht received her medical degree from Brown University, Alpert Medical School, followed by residency at Stanford University Medical Center in General Surgery. During her residency she was employed as a medical fellow and designer for IDEO, a design and innovation firm where she worked in multiple design teams on innovation projects in health and healthcare. Following her general surgery residency, she completed a fellowship with us here at UC Davis Medical Center in Trauma and Surgical Critical Care.
Dr. Mimmie Kwong will be joining the Division of Vascular Surgery in a joint appointment with the VA on September 1. Dr. Kwong received her medical degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine followed by residency at UC Davis Medical Center in Vascular Surgery. During her residency she served as the program representative in the Resident Medical Staff Committee as chief resident focusing on process improvement in the care of vascular patients, residents and medical student education and wellness. Additionally, she has presented research on the match process and published on factors that guide career decisions in young vascular surgeons.
Dr. Steven Maximus will be joining the division of Vascular Surgery in a joint appointment with the VA on September 1. Dr. Maximus received his medical degree from UC Davis School of Medicine followed by residency at UC Irvine Medical Center in General Surgery. He then completed a fellowship at the University of Chicago in Vascular Surgery. His clinical research includes outcomes in endovascular aortic aneurysm repair as well as disparities in health care delivery. Before attending medical school, Dr. Maximus was a high school science and math teacher in Los Angeles and Pomona, CA.
2019 STS Political Advocacy Scholarship Awarded to Sarkeshik
Congratulations to Dr. Amir Sarkeshik, our PGY4 Cardiothoracic Surgery resident for receiving the 2019 STS Advocacy Scholarship! Amir participated in the STS Summer fly-in last year in Washington D.C. As part of the fly-in, Amir will meet with members of Congress, on behalf of the STS, to discuss important policy issues that are germane to the cardiothoracic surgical society. Advocacy priorities for the STS include opposition to cuts to lung cancer screening, gaining access to Medicare claims and social security death data, addressing the CT surgery workforce shortage, increasing funds for Medicare sponsored residency positions and advocating for the healthcare transparency and accountability initiative.
Bold named Physician-in-Chief of UCD Comprehensive Cancer Center
On behalf of the Department of Surgery, we would like to announce that Richard Bold, M.D., F.A.C.S., Chief of the Division of Surgical Oncology and clinic Medical Director, has been named Physician-in-Chief of the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, effective May 15, 2019. Dr. Bold’s new role is part of a broader effort to further integrate the Cancer Center’s research, clinical trials, education, training and outreach into clinical oncology services. This new position will give Dr. Bold clinical oversight of outpatient and inpatient services as well as the cancer center’s affiliated UC Davis Health Cancer Care Network sites throughout Northern California. Join me in congratulating Dr. Bold on this great accomplishment! - Diana Farmer, M.D., F.A.C.S., F.R.C.S.
Godoy awarded AATS Foundation Surgical Robotics Fellowship
Luis Godoy, M.D., Cardiothoracic Surgery Resident, has been selected by the American Association for Thoracic Surgery (AATS) Foundation as an Intuitive Surgical Robotics Fellowship recipient for 2019. The Fellowship experience will begin with a two-day program at an Intuitive Surgical facility. The two days will be a mix of didactic and hand-on learning which will provide a number of transferable skills. Congratulations to Dr. Godoy on his selection!
Potential long term treatment of hemophilia with stem cell-mediated gene therapy paper recently published
Congratulations to our Surgical Bioengineering Laboratory’s hemophilia team for their recent paper published in Stem Cell Research & Therapy. This paper is one of the ongoing studies in the Surgical Bioengineering Lab using stem cells to mediate gene therapy for genetic diseases, such as hemophilia. Long-term engraftment of transplanted stem cells has been a long-lasting problem for stem cell-based treatments. In this study, we showed that co-transplantation of placental mesenchymal stromal cells (PMSCs) and endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) in mice can achieve long-term (26 weeks) engraftment of both PMSCs and EPCs. We also discussed the potential mechanisms of interaction between PMSCs and EPCs that contribute to the long-term engraftment of these cells after transplantation, which has broad indication for many other genetic diseases and applications of stem cells in other situations. The significance of this study has been recognized rapidly in the field.
Manja research thesis paper now on BMJ
Dr. Veena Manja, MBBS, MSc, Ph.D. candidate, McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Surgery, UC Davis, Staff Cardiologist, VA Northern California Health Care System has recently defended her thesis on 'The Ecology of Clinical Decision Making' and her paper Qualitative study of cardiologists perceptions of factors influencing clinical practice decisions can now be reviewed online. Congratulations to Dr. Manja on her outstanding accomplishment!
Sherazee & Xiong selected for 2019 Society of Thoracic Surgeons Looking to the Future Scholarship
Pong Xiong and Elan Sherazee have been both selected for the 2019 Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) Looking to the Future Scholarships. The STS 55th Annual Meeting will be held in San Diego next year, January 2019. The challenging selection process of 30 recipients came from a pool of 57 extremely qualified applicants. The Department of Surgery congratulates both Pong and Elan for their achievement!
Galante inaugurated as Associate Member in ACS Academy of Master Surgeon Educators
Dr. Joseph Galante, chief of trauma, acute care surgery and surgical critical care at UC Davis Health. The American College of Surgeons named Galante as one of 63 inaugural associate members on its new Academy of Master Surgeon Educators.
Civilian and military residents train beside one another in an education program led by Galante at UC Davis Medical Center. It was among the first trauma programs in the country to show surgeons at all career levels how to treat blast and other injuries sustained in mass casualties and teach non-medical personnel how to control bleeding and save lives in emergencies.
Galante has been a key leader in assuring that UCD Medical Center maintains its designation as a top-tier trauma center that can handle every aspect of injury from prevention through rehabilitation.
The college of surgeons founded the academy to help advance the science and practice of surgical education. The academy is composed of members whose work has received national or international recognition; associate members recognized as leaders in surgery education regionally or locally; and affiliate members who support the academy’s goals." -Sacramento Bee Newspaper - November 2018
Tsurutani selected for ASMBS CBN Item Writing Task Force
The Certified Bariatric Nurses (CBN) Exam Development Subcommittee has selected our Division of Bariatric Surgery RN, Judy Tsurutani, to be a part of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) CBN Item Writing Task Force team for future upcoming CBN certification examinations.
Judy has been an active member of ASMBS, which has been deemed UCDH Bariatric Surgery Program as "The Center of Excellence" by the MBSAQIP. Judy has been previously recognized by her peers with multiple "Excellence in Nursing" awards during her career here at UC Davis Health. We congratulate Judy for being selected as a new CBN exam writer.
Anti-Asian Violence Statement
The shootings last week in the Atlanta area, which left eight people dead, are appalling. Six of those murdered were of Asian descent and seven were women. While details are still forthcoming, some reports indicate that the victims were targeted based on their perceived race and gender.
This tragedy highlights an escalating pattern of anti-Asian abuse and hate crimes that have been reported in our region and country over the past year and during this pandemic. We are deeply troubled by these attacks and by any aggression and violence based on one’s race, ethnicity, religion or gender. These reprehensible acts, and the abhorrent sentiment behind them, go against our Department’s mission of supporting a diverse and inclusive community, and they must not and will not be tolerated. We as a Department are dedicated to equity and inclusion, and we will continue to proudly support our Asian American Pacific Islander patients, faculty, trainees, staff and other colleagues.
If you have been the victim of discrimination or witness to such acts, please feel free to file a report using THIS (PDF) resource. This is a list of Health and Psychological resources that are available to students, staff, residents, and faculty.