Notable News from the Department of Surgery

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Notable News from the Department of SurgeryAugust 1, 2016

Legacy of an International Surgeon: Kamal Mansour, 1929-2016

Kamal Mansour, a beloved and renowned faculty cardiothoracic surgeon of the Emory Department of Surgery for 48 years, passed away on June 6, 2016. "Dr. Mansour was a passionate, critical surgical educator who taught his residents to be fearless and uphold the highest standards of patient care when it came to dealing with complex surgical problems," says Edward Chen, who trained with Dr. Mansour and later became his colleague after joining our faculty. "His technical skills in the operating room were best described as both powerful and elegant. The only thing that exceeded his grace as a surgeon was his gentle and humble nature as a human being. He will be sorely missed."
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Twenty-Two Emory Surgery Faculty Named to Atlanta's Top Doctors
More than half of the physicians recognized in Atlanta magazine's July 2016 "Top Doctors" issue are Emory Healthcare doctors, Emory Healthcare Network doctors, or Emory University School of Medicine faculty. The annual listing is compiled by Castle Connolly Medical Ltd., and includes 22 faculty of the Emory Department of Surgery: Kenneth Cardona, Keith Delman, Thomas Dodson, Seth Force, John Galloway, Robert Guyton, Peter H'Doubler, Kirk Kanter, Albert Losken, Steven Macheers, Jeffrey Miller, Douglas Murphy, Foad Nahai, Kenneth Newell, Alan Pickens, J. Mark Rheudasil, Monica Rizzo, Charles Staley, John Sweeney, Collin Weber, Mark Wulkan, and Joseph Zarge.
Faculty Core Services Now Listed on Website
The Faculty Core Services area of the Department of Surgery website focuses on the resources that are available to our faculty for activities, efforts, and initiatives that correspond to the academic, clinical, and research components of the department's mission. Key areas include promotions, data analytics, clinical trials, educational services, research administration, human resources, visual medical education, and website development. A password-protected research toolkit is also accessible as a reference mechanism for the numerous aspects of successful grant application and clinical/basic science study planning. Certain sections are in the developmental stage, but are on track to reach full usability.
Visit Core Services

Faculty and Staff Make Notable Contributions to Successive Quality Conferences

Various faculty and staff shared significant abstracts and posters at one national and two local quality conferences in May and June.
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New Center Will Give Non-Scientists Ability to Impact Health and Disparities in Their Communities
The Center for Advancing Health and Diversity through Citizen Science, a collaborative project led by Theresa Gillespie and Adam Marcus, has received a five-year, R25 Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) from the National Institutes of Health totaling nearly $1.2 million.
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URC-ACTSI Award Planned as First in Series for Virginia Shaffer
Having extensive experience treating colorectal cancer, anal cancer, and other gastrointestinal diseases, Emory GI and general surgeon Virginia Shaffer is well acquainted with the debilitating impact pouchitis can have on patients' quality of life, and is working to develop better therapies for the condition.
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2016-2017 Residency/Fellowship Transitions

The beginning of the 2016-2017 academic year is signified by the arrival of our new residents and fellows and the departure of our successful graduates. We wish each group the best as they embark on the next phase in their respective journeys.
See Who's New, See Who's Leaving
PSM Study Finds Common Factors in Breast Cancer Patients Needing Postoperative Therapy
The Prospective Surveillance Model of care (PSM) practices early identification, treatment, and support of the physical impairments experienced by breast cancer survivors. This proactive approach to the morbidity of breast cancer treatment has been applied and evaluated since 2012 at Grady Memorial Hospital's Avon Comprehensive Breast Center, a program directed by Sheryl Gabram, MD.
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Physicians Report Satisfaction with iChoose Kidney App Improving Transplant Decision Making
The iChoose Kidney app has been available both as a free download and in an online format for over two years. In fact, the app has been downloaded by more than 2,000 users. Shortly after it became available, Rachel Patzer, Mohua Basu, and nephrologists and kidney transplant surgeons from three large transplant centers began evaluating the app with their patients in a randomized trial.
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Yazan Duwayri Appointed Medical Director of SEVSG
Yazan Duwayri, MD, chief quality officer of the Emory Division of Vascular Surgery, has sat on the executive committee of the Southeastern Vascular Study Group (SEVSG) since 2012. At SEVSG's Spring 2016 meeting, Duwayri was elected to a three-year term as medical director of the organization, expanding his responsibilities to chairing the executive committee and overseeing the group's overall operations. SEVSG is a partnership of Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi-based hospitals and staff that functions under the auspices of the Vascular Quality Initiative (VQI) of the Society for Vascular Surgery. The groups' members collect, analyze, and share patient data involving perioperative variables and short and long-term outcomes. Duwayri's early participation in SEVSG was instrumental to its success, particularly his initiation of an automatic data import system which allowed Emory's electronic medical record to integrate with the VQI's database.
Victoria Teodorescu Named to Review Boards of IPRO ESRD Network 6
IPRO's End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Program is composed of groupings of adjacent states known as networks that administer rules and regulations related to the quality of care delivered to ESRD patients. The care benchmarks are determined by Congress and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Emory vascular surgeon Victoria Teodorescu, MD, an expert in vascular access for dialysis, has joined the divisional and medical review boards of Network 6, which encompasses dialysis patients and providers in Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. In these roles, she will advise IPRO's Board of Directors on quality improvement activities, policies, and procedures; interface with CMS and other regulatory agencies; encourage and facilitate participation by patients, providers of services, and ESRD facilities in vocational rehabilitation programs; analyze local data such as clinical performance measures; and other tasks.

Residents Cecilia Ethun and Clara Farley Receive Winship Research Awards

Cecilia Ethun, MD (above, left), and Clara Farley, MD (right), Emory general surgery residents on research sabbatical, have received 2016 research awards from the Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University. Ethun was awarded the Chester P. Rochfort Scholarship in Oncology, and Farley received the William Elkin Cancer Research Fellowship Award.

The Rochfort Scholarship assists outstanding young MD degree holders in cancer research, and provides $10,000 for one year to help cover salary, laboratory costs, and other research-related expenses. Ethun, who recently participated in the 2016 American Association for Cancer Research/American Society of Clinical Oncology Workshop on Methods in Clinical Cancer Research, will apply the scholarship towards examining the clinicopathologic characteristics, management strategies, and outcomes in patients with incidental gallbladder cancer using data from the U.S. Extrahepatic Biliary Malignancy Consortium (USEBMC). Spearheaded at Emory by surgical oncologist-scientist Shishir Maithel, MD, Ethun's mentor, the USEBMC is a comprehensive, patient de-identified surgical database of cases involving extrahepatic biliary cancer from 10 leading academic centers throughout the country.

The Elkin Fellowship is awarded to extraordinary scientists and clinicians with career goals in cancer treatment and research, and contributes $35,000 for up to one-year of the awardee's research costs. Farley, whose research mentor is Mandy Ford, PhD, scientific director of the Emory Transplant Center, is studying metastatic melanoma. Some patients with the disease, but not all, have experienced enhanced immune function against tumor cells and prolonged survival when treated with certain monoclonal antibodies targeting T cell co-inhibitory pathways. Farley's award will help fund her work with Ford as they investigate an additional, recently identified inhibitory Fc receptor, FcyRIIB, which could widen the therapeutic options available for achieving melanoma-specific immunity and assist in improving outcomes for even more patients.

ASCRS Grant for Patrick Sullivan Mentee
Giacomo Waller (above), an Emory 4th year medical student working with Emory's Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) Colorectal Group led by Patrick Sullivan, MD, has been awarded an American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons (ASCRS) grant to study whether the use of the Fitbit, a wireless activity tracking device, will increase ambulation after colorectal surgery.
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Transplant Fellow Honored
Michael Berger, MD, PhD (pictured, right; Dr. Bernd Tillig, current GAPS president, left), a second year abdominal transplant surgery fellow of the Emory Department of Surgery, is one of the two youngest recipients to ever receive the Richard Drachter Award of the German Association for Pediatric Surgery (GAPS). The award recognizes the importance of Berger's investigations of hepatoblastoma, the most common but alternately rare form of liver cancer in very young children.
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Ken Cardona invited to Join ASO Editorial Board
Kenneth Cardona, MD, is joining the editorial board of the bone and soft tissue sarcoma section of Annals of Surgical Oncology (ASO), the official journal of the Society of Surgical Oncology. Cardona joined our faculty in 2012. He is the director of the core curriculum for the Emory general surgery residency, co-chairs the gastrointestinal working group at Emory University Hospital Midtown, and helped drive the formation of the Emory Sarcoma Center at EUHM. Other Emory surgical oncology faculty that are ASO editorial board members include associate editor William Wood, MD; gastrointestinal oncology section member Charles Staley, MD; hepatobiliary tumors section member Shishir Maithel, MD; melanoma section editor Keith Delman, MD; and melanoma section member Maria Russell, MD.
Beth Begley Rejoins the Emory Transplant Center
Beth Begley first joined Emory in 1988 as a staff RN in Emory University Hospital's liver transplant unit. Her subsequent positions have included being a renal and renal/pancreas transplant coordinator at the hospital for six years, and a clinical research nurse supervisor for the Emory Transplant Center (ETC) for seven. She joined Emory Surgery in 2012 as manager of clinical research nursing, and was promoted to director of clinical trials in 2016, providing leadership and oversight of clinical research initiatives across multiple divisions and facilities as well as the ETC's basic science research program. Recently, Begley accepted a position as RN transplant coordinator for the ETC and will work with patients referred for evaluation for kidney and pancreas transplant. "We'll miss Beth very much," says senior Emory Surgery clinical administrator Lisa Fisher, MHA. "She leaves big shoes to fill, but at least we'll still be able to cross paths with her at the ETC."

August Emory Surgical Grand Rounds Schedule

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