Volume 33 | March 13, 2020
Surgical Notes
SCCM Presidential Citation
Congratulations to David Starling, AGACNP with the Division of Acute Care Surgical Services for being selected as one of the recipients of the 2019 Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) Presidential Citations.

SCCM is a non-profit organization dedicated to "promoting excellence and consistency in the practice of critical care" and includes members from across the globe in all critical care professions. The Presidential Citation recognizes members who have made "extraordinary contributions of time, energy, and resources to SCCM during the previous year."

Congratulations David!
Department of Defense Funding
Congratulations to Kirsty Dixon, PhD for receiving funding from the Department of Defense for her proposal "Novel solTNF Inhibitor Improves Outcomes in Rat Model of GWI." This DoD-funded study aims to assess the efficacy of a novel anti-inflammatory therapy to reduce the severity of brain pathology and associated neurological symptoms in a rodent model of Gulf War Illness

Additional kudos to Drs. Adam Klausner, Division of Urology, and Ashraf Gorgey, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, for their DoD award as well. Their proposal is titled "Epidural Stimulation and Resistance Training for Overground Locomotion After Spinal Cord Injury."

Well done team!
Graduating General Surgery Residents
Congratulations to the General Surgery Residency Program Class of 2020!
Isaiah Brown, MD
Vascular Surgery Fellowship
VCU Health System
Richmond, VA
Daniel Galvez Lima, MD
Transplant Surgery Fellowship
Northwestern University
Chicago, IL
Matthew George, MD
Surgical Critical Care Fellowship
Yale University
New Haven, CT
Jill Peysha, MD
General Surgery Clinical Instructor
VCU Health System
Richmond, VA
Jeffrey Stern, MD
Transplant Surgery Fellowship
New York University
New York, NY
VCU Simulation Center 2019 Annual AEI Report Card
Congratulations to the VCU Center for Human Simulation and Patient Safety for meeting all the criteria for re-accreditation as a Comprehensive Accredited Educational Institute by the American College of Surgeons' Division of Education.

The center will maintain its accreditation through December 2023.

Thank you to Susan Haynes (Surgical Simulation Administrator), Dr. Patricia Lange (Assistant Director for Surgical Simulation and Associate Professor, Division of Pediatric Surgery), and the rest of the team for their outstanding work!
5th Annual Academic Surgical Congress
VCU's Program for Global Surgery was well represented at the 5th annual Academic Surgical Congress in Orlando, Florida. Below is a list of all the presentations and speakers. Way to go!

  • "Using Global Collaborations to Pair Patient Education with Surgical Care in a Low-Resource Setting" - Ashley Rosenberg, Research Resident/Dr. Edgar Rodas, Co-Director VCU Program for Global Surgery
  • "Fostering Trauma and Emergency Research Capacity in Rwanda Through Inter professional Collaboration" - Ashley Rosenberg, Research Resident/Dr. Sudha Jayaraman, Co-Director VCU Program for Global Surgery
  • "Development of a multi-specialty longitudinal global health program for medical students: ACCESS" - Kyle Alexander, M2/Drs. Sudha Jayaraman & Edgar Rodas
  • "Global Surgery and Student Interest: Our Institutional Experience" - Kyle Alexander, M2/Drs. Sudha Jayaraman & Edgar Rodas
  • "An Evaluation of Prehospital Care in Rwanda" - Cody McHargue, M4/Dr. Jayaraman
  • "Standardization of Prehospital Care in Kigali, Rwanda" - Megan Wojick, M3/Dr. Sudha Jayaraman
  • "Pre-Departure Curriculum Development to Enhance Global Surgery Competency of VCU Surgical Residents" - Nancy Valencia-Rojas/Dr. Sudha Jayaraman
  • "How to Establish a Program for Global Surgery: Our Institution's Experience" - Nancy Valencia-Rojas/Dr. Sudha Jayaraman

Other VCU Presentations:

  • "Prognostic Implications of Anticoagulation and Antiplatelet Medications in Geriatric Trauma Patients" - Ben Rothstein, PGY-3/Dr. Sudha Jayaraman 
  • "Targeting the Learner, What Medical Students Thing About Clinical Ethics and Potential Surgeon Involvement" - Dr. Michael Amendola
Fellow of Critical Care Medicine
Congratulations to Dr. Kwame Asante Akuamoah-Boateng (Advanced Practice Provider, Division of Acute Care Surgical Services) for his recent induction as a Fellow of Critical Care Medicine (FCCM).

Dr. Akuamoah-Boateng also received the Presidential Citation and was awarded the Safar Global Partner Award from the Society for Critical Care Medicine for his global health outreach work in low-middle income countries in the area of critical care medicine.

Congratulations, Dr. Akuamoah-Boateng!
2020 ABSITE Honor Roll
Congratulations to the following general surgery residents for scoring at or above the 80th percentile on the 2020 ABSITE:

Matthew George **
Daniel Galvez Lima
Brianna Ruch
Kristine Kenning
William Rothstein
Nina Wickramaratne
Yahya Alwatari
Hae Sung Kang
Lucas Keller Biehl

** - Denotes High Score
Pauley Heart Throb
Congratulations to CT surgery fellow Kate Klein, MD for being named the 15th Annual Pauley Heart Center Heart Throb Award winner.

The winner of this award is chosen annually from a list of nominees based on professional behavior, collaboration, positive attitude, service excellence, and safety advocacy. Nominations for Dr Klein included comments such as: "Anytime I see Kate, my day is instantly better. She is an amazing surgeon and she cares so much about her patients and the staff here;" and "Dr. Klein's constant kind attitude even after countless hours in the OR is inspiring."

Congratulations Dr. Klein!
Department of Surgery in the News
Several of our very own were featured on the CBS-6 morning talk show Virginia This Morning in recent weeks.

In case you missed it, here are links to each below!

David Lanning, MD (Pediatric Surgery): Exploring Weight Loss Surgery for Teens

Guilherme Campos, MD (Bariatric & GI Surgery): VCU Health Bariatric Center

Well done, Team!
Trainee Meet & Greet
Meet Brenton French, MD who has been at VCU for three years as a general surgery resident. His greatest goals for the program are to become a technically excellent surgeon, learn to be cool under pressure, and to develop his leaderships skills. He also hopes to work in quality improvement to address surgical costs and complications.

When asked about the most challenging part of being a resident he responded: "every patient is different [and as such] there is never one right way to tackle a problem."

Outside of work you can find Dr. French traveling, watching football, hanging out with his fiancé and pet bulldog, going to festivals, and trying new restaurants.
Upcoming Resident Presentations
Below are a list of presentations accepted for upcoming local and national meetings by CRQS/General Surgery residents:

Society of Clinical Vascular Surgery 

Poster Presentation: Boyd S Amendola M . What are We as a Vascular Society? Analysis of the Youtube Channel Compared to Interventional Radiology. Society of Clinical Vascular Surgery- 48th Annual Symposium on Vascular Surgery, Huntington Beach, California; March 14 to 18, 2020. Finalist Karmody Poster Competition.

American College of Surgeons - Virginia Chapter Meeting

Poster Presentation: Otoya D , Amendola M, Lavingia K , Wolfe L, Posner M. Central Line Access for Hemodialysis Adversely Affects Ipsilateral Arteriovenous Graft Outcomes. Virginia Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, Williamsburg, Virginia May 15 to 16, 2020.

Poster Presentation:  Otoya D , Amendola M. Minimizing the Reaction to a Medical Malpractice Claims Curriculum – Can GRIT Analysis Help? . Virginia Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, Williamsburg, Virginia May 15 to 16, 2020.

Podium Presentation: Tse W . Lavingia K, Amendola M. Comparison of Outcomes in Lower Limb Amputations between General and Vascular Surgeons in the Veterans Population Using VASQIP Database. Virginia Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, Williamsburg, Virginia May 15 to 16, 2020.

Podium Presentation:  Tse W , Dittman J, Lavingia K, Amendola M. Frailty Index Associated with Post-operative Complications and Mortality after Lower Extremity Amputation: A VASQIP Analysis. Virginia Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, Williamsburg, Virginia May 15 to 16, 2020.

Association of VA Surgeons  

Podium Presentation: Otoya D , Amendola M. Minimizing the Risk – Analysis of GRIT in Surgical Residents and their Reaction to a Medical Malpractice Claims Curriculum. Association of VA Surgeons Meeting, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; April 19 to 21, 2020.

Podium Presentation: Tse W , Lavingia K, Amendola M. Risk Factors for Wound Complications after Lower Extremity Amputation: Analysis of VASQIP. Association of VA Surgeons Meeting, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; April 19 to 21, 2020.

Many thanks to Dr. Michael Amendola for his continued leadership in the VA's Chief Resident for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety program.
Employee Feature
Meet Lesley Coots, FNP! Lesley joined VCU Surgery in 2012 and serves as the inpatient NP for the Division of Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery.

We asked Lesley what the most exciting part of her job was and she responded, "Taking care of breast cancer reconstruction patients gives me great satisfaction. It is always rewarding to see them at the end of their reconstruction journey." She also enjoys being able to first assist in the OR.

Outside of work you can find Lesley spending time with her husband, traveling, and playing golf. She also loves to spend time with her new puppy, Otis, a cairn terrier just like Toto!
Monthly Wellness Note
VCU Human Resources just released their March Well-Being Program Schedule. Topics include lunch prepping, chair yoga, and a special presentation on Virginia 529.

Click here to review the schedule.
Upcoming Events
2020 VBS Spring Meeting
March 27 - March 29, 2020
Kingsmill Resort
Williamsburg, Virginia

Click here to register or for more information
56th Annual Humera Surgical Society
April 23 - April 25, 2020
Kingsmill Resort
Williamsburg, Virginia

Click here to register & for more information
Research Open Forum
Monthly, 2nd Mondays
4:00 - 5:00 PM
West 16 Conference Room (16-103)

All are encouraged to attend!
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Have a story to tell? Contact jessica.carey@vcuhealth.org
Top Photo: Tina Hamlet (Associate Administrator), Abby Lafoon (Residency Coordinator), and Nicole Palat (Division Supervisor) at the 2020 Bunts Hackler Meeting
Department of Surgery | Virginia Commonwealth University | (804)828-7874 | surgweb@vcu.edu