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UPMC Physician Journal

Witness exciting innovations happening across UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh. UPMC Physician Journal videos showcase physician researchers and clinicians who are making life-changing medicine happen.

Reconstructive Surgery After Brachial Plexus Injury

Featured Specialties: Plastic Surgery

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UPMC is among just a handful of centers in the country – and the only one in the region – to offer a highly complex operation on patients with severe injuries to the brachial plexus. This UPMC Physician Journal feature goes inside the operating room to follow the intricate surgery aimed at restoring sensation and motor function in the patient’s shoulder, arm, and hand.

This story features an interview with Teun Teunis, MD, PhD.

Learn more about these surgeries.

Biomedical 3D Printing

Featured Specialties: Oncology

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In the world of biomedical engineering, experts call 3D printing an undeniable game-changer. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, meet key players in UPMC’s 3D Printing Program, and see how the team uses 3D-printed models before and during surgery to advance patient-centered care.

This story features interviews with Anish Ghodadra, MD, Matt Spector, MD, FACS, and Elliott Hammersley.

Learn more about how 3D-printed models are used.

FORTE Study for Colorectal Cancer

Featured Specialties: Colorectal

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, hear from experts who are leading a groundbreaking national study to provide an answer to that question. It’s called the FORTE Study, and it will provide new knowledge about when and how often repeat colonoscopies are necessary.

Learn more about the FORTE study.

Diagnosing and Treating Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Featured Specialties: Gastroenterology

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, Jeffrey M. Dueker, MD, MPH, gastroenterologist at UPMC and Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, explains how doctors determine the right care for each patient and he talks about the role patients play in coming up with an accurate diagnosis.

Learn more about IBD care.

Advances in Wheelchair Design

Featured Specialties: Rehabilitiation

Image of two men in wheelchairs.

Go inside the Human Research Engineering Laboratories (HERL) at the University of Pittsburgh as renowned engineer, author, and athlete Dr. Rory Cooper explains cutting-edge advances in wheelchair design.

Learn more about the cutting-edge advances in wheelchair design.

Diversity in the Cardiology Workforce

Featured Specialties: Cardiology

Doctors discussing paperwork.

Research shows that greater diversity in the cardiology the workforce could lead to better outcomes for minority and underserved patients. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, meet experts who are striving to improve diversity now and attract the next generation of cardiologists.

Learn more about diversity in the cardiology workforce.

Vaping Robot

Featured Specialties: Pulmonology

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, see a vaping robot created by a team led by Kambez H. Benam, DPhil, UPMC Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine, and Associate Professor of Medicine, and Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Officially called the Human Vaping Mimetic Real-Time Particle Analyzer, this robot enables researchers to better predict the toxicity of e-cigarettes and additives that impact human health without the need for testing in humans.

Learn more about the vaping robot.

Overcoming Transportation Barriers for People with Disabilities

Featured Specialties: Rehabilitation

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, world-renowned engineer, inventor, and author, and founding director of the Human Engineering Research Laboratories (HERL) Rory Cooper, PhD, demonstrates a board game that serves as a unique teaching tool to help patients and health care providers. The game offers deeper insights into how barriers to safe, reliable, accessible, and affordable transportation prevent persons with disabilities from participating fully in society.

Learn more about the game and its insights.

Vaping and Lung Injury

Featured Specialties: Pulmonology

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Research continues to reveal that the use of e-cigarettes – also known as vaping – have the potential to pose serious health risks. In the UPMC Physician Journal feature, go inside UPMC’s new Vaping Clinic and hear vital information about vaping and lung injury from Shikha Gupta, MD, of the UPMC Comprehensive Lung Center and Asst. Professor-Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; and Divay Chandra, MD, MSc, UPMC Critical Care Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pulmonology and Asst. Professor-Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Learn more about vaping and lung injury.

Improved Drugs for Eye Care

Featured Specialties: Ophthalmology

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In this UPMC Physician Journal Feature, meet researchers who have joined forces to improve drug therapies and how they’re delivered to patients who experience low vision and blindness each year due to disorders of the eye. This story features Morgan DiLeo, PhD, assistant professor of Ophthalmology, Bioengineering and Clinical & Translational Sciences and director, Ophthalmic Biomaterials Laboratory, McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; and Yuanyuan Chen, PhD, assistant professor of Ophthalmology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Learn more about the efforts in improving eye care.

Spinal Cord Stimulation

Specialty: Neurosurgery

Spinal Cord Stimulation

1 in every 4 people over the age of 25 will have a stroke in their lifetime, and many will develop permanent loss of motor function in their arms and hands. In this UPMC Physician Journal Feature, meet Marco Capogrosso, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Neurological Surgery and Director, Spinal Cord Stimulation Laboratory, as he and his team develop a first-of-its-kind treatment option for upper-limb paralysis using spinal cord stimulation.

Learn more about the development of this treatment option.

Post-Cardiac Arrest Service/Emergency Medicine

Featured Specialties: Cardiology, Emergency Medicine

Post-Cardiac Arrest Service/Emergency Medicine

Sudden cardiac arrest affects about one thousand people of all ages each day in the United States. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, learn about innovations that are helping more people survive cardiac arrest, and then recover from the brain injury and organ failure it could cause. This story features Donald Yealy, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Health Services Division, UPMC and Chair, Dept. of Emergency Medicine, UPMC & University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; Ankur Doshi, MD, Director, UPMC Post Cardiac Arrest Service and Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; and Clifton Callaway, MD, PhD, Attending Physician, UPMC Presbyterian Hospital and Professor of Emergency Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Learn more about post-cardiac arrest services and innovations.

Neurosurgery & Collaborations to Advance Minimally Invasive Treatments for Epilepsy

Featured Specialties: Neurosurgery

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, go inside the operating room to see an exciting new minimally invasive technique to treat epilepsy– and meet the team of doctors from different disciplines who collaborated to develop this first-of-its-kind surgery: Jorge A. González-Martínez, MD, PhD, Director, Epilepsy and Movement Disorders Division, UPMC Department of Neurosurgery & Co-Director of the University of Pittsburgh Comprehensive Epilepsy Center; Paul A. Gardner, MD, Co-Director, Center for Cranial Base Surgery and Director, Surgical Neuroanatomy Lab at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; and Carl Snyderman, MD, Professor of otolaryngology and neurological surgery, at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and the Co-Director of the Center for Cranial Base Surgery at UPMC.

Learn more about this new minimally invasive technique to treat epilepsy.

Reduced-Intensity Conditioning Chemotherapy

Featured Specialties: Oncology

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, meet Paul Szabolcs, MD, Chief, Bone Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapies, as he and his team develop and implement effective “reduced-intensity” conditioning chemotherapy regimens for patients in need of a blood or bone marrow transplant. It is a leading-edge and life-saving development, especially for patients with rare immune-system defects and degenerative brain diseases who have not been eligible for blood and bone transplants in the past.

Learn more about the development of “reduced-intensity” conditioning chemotherapy regimens.

Biomarker for Myofascial Pain

Featured Specialties: Pain Medicine

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, follow a multidisciplinary team as they develop and test a biomarker for lumbar myofascial pain. In pursuit of this goal, cutting-edge ultrasound technology and Advanced Machine Learning are employed by Ajay D. Wasan, MD, MSc, Vice Chair for Pain Medicine in the Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine at UPMC and a Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine and Psychiatry in the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; Kang Kim, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine and of Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh and the Heart and Vascular Institute, UPMC; and Jiantao Pu, PhD, Associate Professor of Radiology and Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh.

Learn more about the development and testing of a biomarker for lumbar myofascial pain.

Finding a Biomarker for Alzheimer's Disease

Featured specialties: Neurology and Psychiatry

Image of Dr. Pascoal standing in front of brain scans.

In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, meet Tharick Pascoal, MD, PhD, neurologist and associate professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, as he and his team conduct research to find a biomarker based on tau proteins in the brain, which may help clinicians provide an earlier and more accurate diagnosis for Alzheimer’s disease.

Learn more about the team's biomarker research.


Exercise Oncology

Featured Specialties: Oncology

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Kathryn H. Schmitz, PhD, MPH, is a leading researcher in exercise oncology. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, learn about UPMC’s Moving Through Cancer Program and its evidence-based practices to promote cancer prevention, control, and survivorship.

Learn more about exercise oncology.

Theranostics & Targeted Radionuclide Therapy

Featured Specialties: Radiology, Oncology

Image of doctors looking at screen.

In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, learn about exciting advances in theranostics with Ravi Patel, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor Radiation Oncology, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center; and Shyam M. Srinivas, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Radiology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Director of Molecular Imaging Research, UPMC.

Learn more about exciting advances in theranostics.

Foot Fat Grafting

Featured Specialties: Podiatry, Plastic Surgery

Image of Dr. Jeffrey Gusenoff and Dr. Beth Gusenoff.

In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, witness the unique collaboration of husband and wife team Dr. Jeffrey Gusenoff and Dr. Beth Gusenoff. He’s a plastic surgeon and she’s a podiatrist, and together they’ve developed an evidence-based procedure to treat fat pad atrophy and plantar fasciitis.

Learn more about the husband and wife team's evidence-based procedure.

Risk-Reducing Surgery for Gynecologic Cancers

Featured Specialties: Oncology

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Ovarian cancer accounts for more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system, in part because there is no reliable test for early detection. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, Sarah Taylor, MD, assistant professor, UPMC Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, discusses what women should consider about preventative salpingo-oophorectomies and hysterectomies if genetic testing has revealed a pathogenic variant placing them at increased risk.

Learn more about risk-reducing surgery for gynecologic cancers.

Cancer Therapy & Fecal Microbiota Transplants

Featured Specialties: Oncology, Gastroenterology, and Transplantation

Still from the Cancer Therapy & Fecal Microbiota Transplants Physician Journal.

In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, join Diwakar Davar, MD, and Hassane M. Zarour, MD, as they study ways to help more cancer patients respond to immunotherapy using fecal microbiota transplants.

Learn more about immunotherapy using fecal microbiota transplants.

Virtual Genetic Counseling

Featured Specialties: Gynecology and Oncology

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, Phuong Mai, MD, associate professor, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, and Genetic Counselor Darcy Thull, MS, discuss the role of genetic testing to reveal a woman’s increased risk of hereditary cancers, including breast and ovarian cancer, as well as the range of prevention and early-detection interventions when testing reveals a pathogenic variant.

Learn more about genetic testing.

Innovations in Orthopaedic Research

Featured Specialties: Orthopaedic Surgery

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In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, MaCalus V. Hogan, MD, MBA, Chair of Orthopaedic Surgery at UPMC and David Silver Professor and Chair of Pitt’s Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, takes viewers inside a research lab to see cutting-edge technology being used to improve diagnosis and care of orthopaedic conditions.

Learn more about the cutting-edge technology being using at UPMC research labs.

Advances in Contrast-Enhanced Mammography

Featured Specialties: Radiology

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Meet Margarita Zuley, MD, FACR, Chief of Breast Imaging at UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital, and learn about contrast-enhanced mammography as a way to improve diagnostics and offer a lower-cost and more accessible method of breast imaging for women with increased risk of breast cancer.

Learn about contrast-enhanced mammography.

Telerheumatology

Featured Specialties: Rheumatology

Telerheumatology

The rheumatology field faces a critical shortage of health providers. Christine Peoples, MD, director of the Telerheumatology Program at UPMC, explains how the health system reaches more patients with rheumatic disease and advances long-term clinical care through unique options in tele-medicine.

Learn more about the benefits of Telerheumatology from Dr. Peoples.

RAVE (Rapid Access Video Encounter)

Featured Specialties: Rheumatology

RAVE (Rapid Access Video Encounter)

Meet Andreea Coca, MD, MPH, Medical Director at UPMC’s Lupus Center of Excellence, and learn about a unique UPMC clinic that uses tele-health visits to address the dramatic influx of new patients with rheumatic disease. The RAVE Clinic (Rapid Access Video Encounter) reduces wait-times for appointments, assessments, and crucial follow-up care.

Learn more about Dr. Coca's work at the RAVE Clinic.

Understanding Sepsis: Medical & Social Risk Factors

Featured Specialties: Critical Care Medicine

Understanding Sepsis: Medical & Social Risk Factors

Sepsis is the cause of approximately one out of every five deaths around the world. Join Kristina Rudd, MD, MPH, as she explains her award-winning work on sepsis and Syndemic Theory, and exploring adverse interactions between medical and social risk factors in order to develop novel strategies in clinical care, research, and health policies.

Learn more about Dr. Rudd's work on sepsis and Syndemic Theory.

Treating Epilepsy During Pregnancy

Featured Specialties: Neurology

Dr. Pennell and colleague discussing how the MONEAD study offers crucial data about anti-epileptic drug exposure and maternal, fetal, and child outcomes.

Join Dr. Page Pennell as she discusses her work on the MONEAD study and provides an inside look at the groundbreaking research that is giving new hope to pregnant women with epilepsy.

Learn more about Dr. Pennell's epilepsy research.

Juvenile Onset Systemic Sclerosis

Featured Specialties: Pediatrics, Rheumatology

Dr. Kathryn Torok, CHP Pediatric Scleroderma Clinic Director, examines a patient.

Go behind the scenes at the Juvenile Systemic Scleroderma Center at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and see how its multidisciplinary team is innovating new treatments for this rare and devastating autoimmune disease.

Learn more about the Juvenile Systemic Scleroderma Center.

Treating Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Featured Specialties: Pulmonology

Image of patient getting treated for CO poisoning.

Carbon monoxide is one of the most common causes of poisoning in the world. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, meet a team of physician-scientists who have made a breakthrough that could lead to the first-ever antidote for CO poisoning in humans.

Learn more about the UPMC team whose research could lead to CO poisoning antidote.

Discovering a Drug Therapy for Tinnitus

Featured Specialties: Otolaryngology

Thanos Tzounopoulos, PhD, uses two-photon microscopy to study neuronal activity in live mouse models to better understand the contributors to tinnitus.

Join Dr. Thanos Tzounopoulos as he explores the neuroscience of tinnitus and provides an inside look at the labs of University of Pittsburgh researchers as they strive to develop the first FDA-approved drug to treat this condition.

Learn more about University of Pittsburgh's tinnitus research.

Organ on a Chip


Featured Specialties: Endocrinology

Researchers examine the microphysiological model of a liver.

Learn from Dr. Vijay Yechoor, Dr. Ipsita Banerjee, and Dr. D. Lansing Taylor as they demonstrate how their team uses an innovative technology known as microphysiological systems – or organs on a chip – to develop better methods for disease modeling and drug testing.

Learn more about organs on a chip and their many uses.

Living Donor Liver Transplant

Featured Specialties: Gastroenterology, Transplantation

Surgeons prepare donor liver tissue during a live-donor liver transplant surgery.

Meet the team of physicians and researchers who have made UPMC the national leader in living-donor liver transplants and learn about the novel protocols implemented for each life-saving surgery.

Learn more about the novel living-donor liver transplant protocols.

Finding New Treatments for OCD

Featured Specialties: Psychiatry

Finding New Treatments for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder image.

Meet the UPMC team behind the award-winning research investigating the link between molecular changes in the brain and psychiatric illness and learn about the discoveries that could lead to novel treatments for obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Learn more about how this research may affect treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.

Restoring Sensory Feedback

Featured Specialties: Rehabilitation

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Join Dr. Eric Helm and Dr. Lee Fisher for an inside look at promising research that uses devices to stimulate the nervous system and restore sensory feedback for patients with amputations.

Learn more about Dr. Helm and Dr. Fisher's sensory feedback research.

Understanding Cancer Through Rapid Autopsy 

Featured Specialties: Oncology

Understanding Cancer Through Rapid Autopsy image.

The rapid autopsy program at UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh is leading to cancer research that would otherwise be impossible. Hear about the expansion of this program and the central tissue bank that provides a greater understanding of the disease evolution and drivers of metastases.

Learn more about UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh's rapid autopsy program.

Vision Restoration Using Optogenetics

Featured Specialties: Ophthalmology

An international team of researchers, co-led by UPMC’s José-Alain Sahel, MD, set a bold goal: curing blindness. Meet the patient experiencing a first-of-its kind success story using optogenetic vision restoration.

Learn more about Dr. Sahel and team's vision restoration research.

Paying Tribute to Dr. Freddie Fu

Featured Specialties: Orthopaedic Surgery

Freddie H. Fu, MD, the creator of UPMC’s world-renowned sports medicine program and long-time chair of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine’s Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, was one of the most recognized and beloved physicians in Pittsburgh. In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, we pay tribute to the medical legacy of Dr. Fu and honor the kind and compassionate man at the heart of it all.

Learn more about Dr. Fu as we pay tribute to his legacy.

Research Offers Potential Cure for Diabetes

Featured Specialties: Endocrinology

Join George Gittes, MD, as he walks through the exciting and unexpected potential of diabetes gene therapy. What started as a basic study on beta cells in the pancreas, turned into a possible treatment to eliminate the need for insulin replacement for people with diabetes.

Learn more about how this gene therapy research may offer potential diabetes cure.

Advances in Surgical Treatment of Epilepsy

Featured Specialties: Neurology

Image of surgeons looking at screen during a procedure.

In this UPMC Physician Journal feature, discover the latest advances in novel surgical methods for treating epilepsy - and, see the clinical and research efforts to develop safer and more efficient methods to treat patients with severe seizer and movement disorders.

Learn more about the latest advances in surgical methods for epilepsy treatment.

Episode 105

Doctors performing surgery

  • UPMC and Pitt mourn the passing of Dr. Freddie Fu
  • Reducing surgical complications before the first cut
  • A quest to reduce or eliminate chronic organ rejection
  • Closing health equity gaps in obstetrics with doulas and high-tech

Learn more about Dr. Fu, the quest to reduce chronic organ rejection, and more.

Episode 104

Pregnancy Recovery Center at UPMC Magee

  • UPMC announces new leadership
  • Testing new therapies for treating TBI in children
  • New device therapy interventions for patients with COPD
  • Go inside the Pregnancy Recovery Center at UPMC Magee

Learn more about new leadership at UPMC, new COPD device therapy interventions, and more.

Episode 103

Included in This Episode:

  • Mastering the robotic Whipple procedure
  • Developing assistive devices to enhance independence
  • Improving synthetic vascular grafts
  • Q & A with Donald Yealy, MD, and Derek Angus, MD

Learn more about synthetic vascular grafts, the robotic Whipple procedure, and more.

Episode 102

Included in This Episode:

  • Introducing new Health Services leadership team
  • Activating T-cells outside the body for immune therapy
  • Advances in tissue regeneration
  • The Pittsburgh Study follows 25K children to uncover health disparities
  • Q & A with Leslie Davis and Donald Yealy, MD

Learn more about the new Health Services leadership team, tissue regeneration, and more.


Episode 101

Included in This Episode:

  • Derek Angus, MD, on REMAP research
  • Douglas White, MD, on allocating resources to treat COVID-19
  • John Mellors, MD, on the discovery of Ab8
  • Q & A with Steven Shapiro, MD, and Joel Nelson, MD

Learn more about REMAP research, the discovery of Ab8, and more.

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Please feel free to submit questions, comments, or ideas for future episodes by contacting us at physicianresources@upmc.edu.

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