School of Medicine

Wayne State University School of Medicine
Reach Out to Youth celebrates 25 years of introducing children to the world of medicine
In Headlines on February 6, 2014
Joshua and Josiah Johnson listen for their mother's heartbeat.

Joshua and Josiah Johnson listen for their mother's heartbeat.

Students drew outlines of their bodies and then placed drawings of key organs in the appropriate places.

Students drew outlines of their bodies and then placed drawings of key organs in the appropriate places.

Participants learned about the heart and lungs, and then got to handle the real things.

Participants learned about the heart and lungs, and then got to handle the real things.

First-year medical student Mary Hauswirth shows Joshua and Josiah Johnson how to test their reflexes.

First-year medical student Mary Hauswirth shows Joshua and Josiah Johnson how to test their reflexes.

Hundreds of children celebrated a daylong look at the Wayne State University School of Medicine this month into their possible future careers as doctors and medical researchers.

The annual Reach Out to Youth event, held Feb. 1 in Scott Hall, aims to expose inner-city children to the science of medicine and careers in medical fields. The event is organized by the Black Medical Association, a School of Medicine student organization.

Celebrating its 25th year, Reach Out to Youth was founded by Carolyn King, M.D., a 1993 graduate of the WSU School of Medicine, and Don Horakhty Tynes, M.D., Class of 1995.

More than 360 children ages 7 to 11 registered for the event, which featured classes on the heart, the respiratory system and diagnostic skills. Each child who attended received a T-shirt and a booklet on the topics they would study during the day.

While the children got practical, hands-on lessons about health care and the science of medicine, their parents heard from physicians and educators on a number of topics. De’Andrea Wiggins, interim director of the school’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, presented “Preparing Your Child for a Career in Medicine – Navigating Obstacles.” Dr. Tynes talked about the “History of African-Americans and Medicine.”

The real focus of the day, however, was placed on potential future physicians and medical scientists who crowded the classrooms in Scott Hall.

Karen Johnson, a respiratory therapist from Highland Park, attended with her 9-year-old twins, Joshua and Josiah.

“There’s not an option,” Johnson said when asked whether her twins want to become physicians. “They will become doctors. They know it. They are straight-A students and are great in science.”

Joshua said he wants to become a neurosurgeon like his hero Ben Carson, M.D. “I want to help people and it would be fun,” he said.

That’s exactly the message Reach Out to Youth organizers want the participants to take home.

“Reach Out to Youth is important because it provides children access to an environment that they otherwise would not have access to unless their parents were in the medical field,” said event organizer and second-year medical student Adam Milam, Ph.D. “Unlike other programs, Reach Out to Youth is completely free and will always remain free so that all children will have access. Our goal is twofold; to encourage children to pursue an education in medicine and science and provide parents with information on how to get their children into medical school – and to provide children with information about living healthy through exercise and eating a balanced diet.

“The program is important to the children because they get to be a doctor for a day and it sparks a curiosity into how the body works,” said Milam, a native of Baltimore who earned his doctoral degree in public health at Johns Hopkins University. “The children were excited to see human organs, to practice clinical maneuvers and learn about healthy eating. One of the students who attended the program for the last three years mentioned how he was able to take information he learned last year back to school and discuss how the brain works with his teacher and classmates.”

Reach Out to Youth also is important to the medical students who organize and serve as volunteers. “The program is important to me because it relates to two major public health concerns, obesity and lack of adequate health services in many minority and poverty-stricken communities,” Milam said. “The children are not only able to learn why healthy eating and exercise are so important but they were able to connect it with how it then impacts their organ systems and their body in general. By the program targeting students attending Detroit Public Schools, we hope the participants will pursue a career in medicine or science to address many of the medical and public health concerns in their community, like hypertension and diabetes, and many other urban locations.”

Mary Hauswirth, a first-year medical student from Utica, Mich., taught clinical sessions, showing her charges how to use a stethoscope, a penlight to study pupil dilation, a hammer to test reflexes and how to interact with a patient as a doctor.

“I think it’s really important to reach out to the community, and it’s important to show the kids that they have the opportunity to make a difference,” she said.

Milam added that the Black Medical Association thanked the volunteers, alumni, school administrators, businesses and hospitals for their support in making the event possible.
Dr. Madhavan named director of DMC-WSU Comprehensive Stroke Program
In Headlines on February 6, 2014
Ramesh Madhavan, M.D., D.M.

Ramesh Madhavan, M.D., D.M.

The Detroit Medical Center and the Wayne State University Department of Neurology have appointed Associate Professor of Neurology Ramesh Madhavan, M.D., D.M., the director of the Detroit Medical Center-Wayne University Comprehensive Stroke Program.

Dr. Madhavan also is the director of the Telemedicine Program of the Wayne State University Physician Group.

The appointment was jointly announced by Suzanne White, M.D., M.B.A., chief medical officer for the Detroit Medical Center, and Omar Khan, M.D., professor and chair of WSU Neurology and specialist-in-chief of Neurology for the DMC.

“Dr. Madhavan brings a unique blend of leadership and clinical research experience,” Dr. Khan said. “He is one of the few neurologists in the country leading the field of bioinformatics technology combined with telemedicine in the acute stroke care. He is also developing outcomes and quality metrics, which is becoming a very important part of national health care models."

Dr. White called Dr. Madhavan “an exceptionally talented neurologist, whose expertise in stroke, telemedicine and bioinformatics gives the Detroit Medical Center a unique opportunity to establish a model platform combining clinical skills with technology to improve outcomes.”

 

Dr. Madhavan was instrumental in building the Stroke Program at the Detroit Medical Center several years ago. He has developed applications as well as software technology for high-volume data mining in health care delivery systems. His programs have been funded by the military and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

 

Stroke will affect about 800,000 people in the United States this year, Dr. Madhavan said, at a rate of one stroke approximately every 40 seconds. Stroke is the fourth-leading cause of death in the U.S., and its direct cost to the health care system is about $72 billion annually. Stroke leads to lost productivity costs of $33.6 billion annually.

 

“Stroke is a critical area of National Institutes of Health-funded research and CMS-driven health care delivery systems,” Dr. Madhavan said. “We hope to build upon the continuing success of our model for comprehensive care of stroke patients. I believe that our team of highly qualified vascular, critical care and interventional neurologists will continue to improve our patient outcomes in Michigan and in the networks that we plan to expand. One of our goals is to extend our model of stroke care to Tenet Healthcare Corporation in other states. This will help improve the quality of stroke care and outcomes in other Tenet markets. With large volume data mining collection, this will also allow us to compete in federally-funded programs that focus on stroke care, outcomes and application of technology.”

 

For more information on the stroke program at the Detroit Medical Center and Wayne State University Physicians Group, visit www.dmc.org/‎ and http://www.wsupgdocs.org/.
Dr. Norman to give Black History Month lecture
In Headlines on February 5, 2014
Silas Norman Jr. M.D.

Silas Norman Jr. M.D.

Silas Norman Jr., M.D., associate dean of Admissions, Diversity and Inclusion for the Wayne State University School of Medicine, will give a lecture at the John D. Dingell Veterans Affairs Medical Center in celebration of Black History Month.

Dr. Norman will present “Current Trends in African American Medical Student Enrollment in Public Universities such as Wayne State University.”

The lecture is scheduled for Feb. 12 at 10 a.m. in Room B5227 of the center as part of the VAMC’s Black History Month theme, “Civil Rights in America.”

For more information, call 313-576-1560.

 

Medical student Sunali Wadehra wins fellowship to attend Italy conference
In Headlines on February 4, 2014
Sunali Wadehra is a third-year medical student at the Wayne State University School of Medicine.

Sunali Wadehra is a third-year medical student at the Wayne State University School of Medicine.

Sunali Wadehra, a third-year Wayne State University School of Medicine student, will take her first trip to Italy this spring for an international science conference.

Wadehra won a competitive travel award to attend the Schizophrenia International Research Society’s biennial meeting April 5-9 at the Firenze Fiera Congress Center in Florence, Italy.

“This was very unexpected and out of the blue,” she said. “Only 20 trainees around the world are selected as awardees. I gave the award a shot by submitting an application, but I was not expecting to be chosen. But I am so honored to have received the award, and I wholeheartedly look forward to attending this conference.”

The travel awards are funded by a grant from the National Institute of Mental Health. A committee of senior investigators selects individuals who, through their research, teaching or clinical activities, have demonstrated professional and scientific interest in the field of schizophrenia research. It is open to graduate students, residents, fellows and young faculty members.

She will present the poster "Dynamic Causal Modeling of fMRI data reveals disordered frontal-hippocampal-striatal interactions during associative learning in schizophrenia patients."  

In the study, Wadehra, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences Vaibhav Diwadkar, Ph.D., and two others used a combination of functional brain imaging and advanced network modeling techniques to study disordered network interactions in schizophrenia patients during a paired object-location associative learning paradigm.

They analyzed three regions – the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex and basal ganglia -- all central to how the brain learns. The study demonstrated dramatic differences in how the regions interact with one another during learning in patients with schizophrenia.

 Wadehra was born and raised in Detroit. She aspires to serve the city through her work as a psychiatrist after graduating from the School of Medicine in 2015.

In 2011, she attended the Organization of Human Brain Mapping conference in Quebec, and the American/Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry meeting in Toronto, both as a travel awardee.

The upcoming conference focuses on new drug development and the status of cutting-edge basic and translational research in the field of schizophrenia.

“I am attracted to this conference because it is well-aligned with my budding interest in the neural underpinnings of schizophrenia-related pathology and its application to the treatment of mental illness,” she said. “I look forward to connecting with scholars and clinicians who have successfully established themselves in this fertile area of research, both for their feedback on the work that I have done in Dr. Diwadkar's lab, as well as for their guidance and mentorship toward my own career aspirations in this field.”

Travel awardees also will act as rapporteurs for the conference’s oral sessions, writing reports to be edited into a published summary that will credit them as co-authors, and will attend a luncheon meeting with a mentor matched to their area of interest.
'Pie the Professor' raises money for students' medical mission trip
In Headlines on January 31, 2014
Dennis Goebel, Ph.D., associate professor of anatomy and cell biology, reacts to getting a face full of shaving cream at ‘Pie a Professor’ on Jan. 31, 2014.

Dennis Goebel, Ph.D., associate professor of anatomy and cell biology, reacts to getting a face full of shaving cream at ‘Pie a Professor’ on Jan. 31, 2014.

Associate Dean Matt Jackson, Ph.D., left, braces himself while getting a pie in the face.

Associate Dean Matt Jackson, Ph.D., left, braces himself while getting a pie in the face.

Dr. Jackson wipes off as much of the aftermath as possible.

Dr. Jackson wipes off as much of the aftermath as possible.

Witnesses were encouraged to donate $20 for the chance to pie a professor.

Witnesses were encouraged to donate $20 for the chance to pie a professor.

The Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology’s Rodney Braun, Ph.D., left, and Dennis Goebel, Ph.D., were good sports for a good cause.

The Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology’s Rodney Braun, Ph.D., left, and Dennis Goebel, Ph.D., were good sports for a good cause.

The event raised money for an upcoming medical mission trip to Morne, Haiti.

The event raised money for an upcoming medical mission trip to Morne, Haiti.

Medical students at the Wayne State University School of Medicine donated plenty of cash Friday for what some called a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity – shoving a shaving cream pie into their professor’s face.

Proceeds from the “Pie the Professor” lunchtime event in Scott Hall will be used to purchase supplies for the World Health Student Organization’s medical mission trip to Morne, Haiti, set for the week of March 15.

“A lot of us have been contributing to this cause for a long time. We write our own personal checks,” said volunteer pie victim Dennis Goebel, Ph.D., an associate professor of anatomy and cell biology who teaches gross anatomy courses.

In partnership with Rays of Hope for Haiti, a non-profit organization based in Michigan, second-year WSU medical students and physicians will set up a clinic over five days to deliver free medical care to Haitians displaced by the nation’s 2010 earthquake and living in extreme poverty.

“These kids have such a wonderful experience. They get to do some great work right alongside physicians. It’s something I strongly believe in. Giving service is what it is all about,” Dr. Goebel said. “I think they come back with a lot more than they went with.”

He was joined by fellow pie-takers Kwaku Nantwi, Ph.D., and Rodney Braun, Ph.D., both associate professors in the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology; Matt Jackson, Ph.D., associate dean of academic and student programs; and Jason Pogue, PharmD, a Detroit Medical Center pharmacist who teaches antibiotics to second-year medical students.

“We really appreciate the time they are giving us to do this,” said Amy Li, a second-year medical student and WHSO’s sustainability co-chair, who is going on the trip to Haiti and helped at the event.
Dr. Harold Kim named interim chair of Radiation Oncology
In Headlines on January 30, 2014
Harold Kim, M.D.

Harold Kim, M.D.

Associate Professor Harold Kim, M.D., has been appointed interim chair of the Wayne State University School of Medicine’s Department of Radiation Oncology.

Dr. Kim assumed the position Jan. 20, replacing Andre Konski, M.D., M.B.A., who left the School of Medicine for a position with University of Pennsylvania Affiliated Hospitals.

Dr. Kim will lead the department while the school conducts a search for a permanent chair.

“I am confident that Dr. Kim, a respected member of our faculty, has the experience and demeanor to lead the department during this period of transition,” Dean Valerie M. Parisi, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., said in announcing the appointment.

Dr. Kim has been a member of the School of Medicine faculty for 19 years. A 1987 graduate of the Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago, he served an internal medicine internship, followed by a radiation oncology residency, at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. He completed a fellowship at the Edward Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology at Washington University Medical School in 1992.

The attending physician and clinical chief of the Gershenson Radiation Oncology Center at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, he has served as a consultant for the Department of Radiation Oncology for the John D. Dingell Veterans Administration Medical Center.

A principal investigator and study coordinator for several national research projects, the Association of Radiation Oncology Residents named Dr. Kim an Educator of the Year for 2012.

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