e-Update: News for University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Faculty and Staff

Up Front

From left are, Eduardo C. Alfonso, M.D., professor and Chair of Bascom Palmer Eye Institute; Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid, Ph.D.; and David T. Tse, M.D.

From left are, Eduardo C. Alfonso, M.D., professor and Chair of Bascom Palmer Eye Institute; Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid, Ph.D.; and David T. Tse, M.D.

Bascom Palmer Receives $10 Million Gift to Establish Orbital Vision Research Center

One of the world’s most prominent businessmen and leading philanthropists has donated $10 million to the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute to establish an interdisciplinary research center dedicated to eradicating blinding injuries and lethal orbital malignancies.

The gift from Saudi Arabia’s pre-eminent builder, Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid, Ph.D., the founder and chairman of Rashid Engineering who lost vision in one eye as a child, is the largest the nation’s top-ranked ophthalmology program has received during Momentum2: The Breakthrough Campaign for the University of Miami. It will establish the Dr. Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid Orbital Vision Research Center in the Miller School’s Evelyn F. and William L. McKnight Vision Research Center.

Read more about the gift »

More News

Steven E. Lipshultz, M.D.

Steven E. Lipshultz, M.D.

Pediatrics Study Discredits “Kind and Gentle” Chemo Approach for Kids with Leukemia

For decades, children have received chemotherapy over days, rather than minutes, under the assumption the “kinder and gentler” approach would protect their hearts from long-term, often deadly, cardiac complications associated with the potent drugs. But a study led by Miller School researchers and published online November 19 in the journal Pediatrics found that the slow, continuous infusion of doxorubicin, a drug that has dramatically improved the leukemia survival rate, does not provide youngsters with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) any more cardioprotection than rapid infusion.

Both infusion methods, the multicenter study found, are equally toxic to young hearts.

Spearheaded by Steven E. Lipshultz, M.D., professor of pediatrics, the longest and largest randomized, blinded study comparing the long-term cardiac effects of the two delivery methods recommends discontinuing the slow administration of doxorubicin to children with high-risk acute ALL. The study, which will appear in the December issue of the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics with a related commentary, also underscores the depth of what a recent Institute of Medicine report called “a special worry” over the lack of studies on the long-term efficacy and late effects of drugs prescribed for children.

Read more about the study »

From left are, Joycelyn Lawrence, M.D., Sheeka Lawkin, RN, and Catherine F. Penrod, CEO of Switchboard Miami.

From left are, Joycelyn Lawrence, M.D., Sheeka Lawkin, RN, and Catherine F. Penrod, CEO of Switchboard Miami.

Family Medicine’s School Health Initiative Receives All Star Award for Innovation

The Miller School’s Dr. John T. Macdonald Foundation School Health Initiative took home the All Star Non-Profit Award for Innovation at Switchboard Miami’s inaugural awards luncheon, held November 9 at Jungle Island to recognize and celebrate the vital work of non-profits in our community.

The School Health Initiative, a partnership between the Dr. John T. Macdonald Foundation and the Miller School Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, offers free health care services to children in eight Miami-Dade County public schools.

Read more about the award »

Christopher Estes, M.D., accepts his award from Lydia Fein.

Christopher Estes, M.D., accepts his award from Lydia Fein.

Miller School Educator Receives Faculty Mentor of the Year Award

Christopher Estes, M.D., assistant professor of clinical obstetrics and gynecology, was honored with the Faculty Mentor of the Year Award by the international Medical Students for Choice organization for his outstanding guidance and support of the Miller School’s chapter.

Estes received the award at the nonprofit’s annual Conference on Family Planning, held November 10-11 in St. Louis, from the Miller School’s Lydia Fein, an M.D./M.P.H. student who, along with her classmate Brigitte Frett and medical students Ian Bishop and Christine Greer, nominated Estes for the award.

“The spirit of being pro-choice encompasses more than a woman’s right to have an abortion,” Estes said. “It is about respect for patient autonomy and justice in the health care system.”

Read more about Dr. Estes »

Denise C. Vidot

Denise C. Vidot

Epidemiology and Public Health Doctoral Student Wins Poster Competition

Denise C. Vidot, M.A., doctoral student in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, won first place in the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Section’s Student Poster Showcase held October 29 at the American Public Health Association’s 140th Annual Meeting and Expo in San Francisco.

For her poster, “Prenatal cocaine exposure and criminal offending by early adulthood,” Vidot examined the relationship between prenatal cocaine exposure and arrest history in early adulthood. Although prenatal cocaine exposure has been linked to disruptive behavior in childhood, little is known about the long-term effects on delinquency and criminal activity through adolescence.

Read more about the student poster award winner »

Team Square members, Austin Perlmutter (in green), Kyle Stoffers (in orange headband), Adam Rosen (in red) and Alex Barsam, perform the most creative push-up.

Team Square members, Austin Perlmutter (in green), Kyle Stoffers (in orange headband), Adam Rosen (in red) and Alex Barsam, perform the most creative push-up.

Public Health Student Association and MedFit Host Third Annual Push-Ups for PHSA

The medical student group MedFit and the Public Health Student Association (PHSA) hosted the third annual Push-Ups for PHSA competition at the Medical Wellness Center on November 7 to raise funds for the healthy cooking and nutrition class at Booker T. Washington Senior High School in Overtown. Hosted by the PHSA, the class uses a culturally sensitive, hands-on approach to educate community youth on how to make healthy food choices and prepare healthy meals.

Interest in the push-up contest grew substantially this year, with 48 people participating – a remarkable 60 percent increase from last year.

For the competition, 11 teams composed of students, faculty and staff vied to perform the most push-ups – and entertain bystanders. The crowd cheered for contestants as they revealed their themed costumes, choreographed dance moves and creative push-up configurations.

Read more about the competition »

The 2012 International Neonatal Conference brought dozens of leading experts together in Miami.

The 2012 International Neonatal Conference brought dozens of leading experts together in Miami.

UM’s International Neonatal Conference Celebrates 36 Years

Leading neonatology experts from 48 countries once again gathered at the Fontainebleau Hotel on Miami Beach for the Miller School’s 36th Annual International Miami Neonatology Conference.

Held October 31 through November 3, the three-day conference and one-day workshop included discussions on nutritional management, bionanotechnology, neonatal infection, oxygen management, cardiopulmonary issues, long-term developmental outcomes, and other topics critical to the unique needs of premature infants.

More than 1,000 neonatologists, nurses, and respiratory therapists attended the conference, one of the largest and most established neonatal meetings in the world.

Read more about the conference »

Early Deadline for Submissions

Please note that the submission deadline for the December 2 issue of MED is Tuesday, November 25, at noon. Any requests received after the deadline will be processed the following week. Happy Thanksgiving!

Alumni Association Accepting Award Nominations

Do you know an outstanding individual? The University of Miami Alumni Association is now accepting nominations for this year’s Alumni Awards Ceremony, scheduled for Thursday, April 18, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Newman Alumni Center, Multipurpose Room.

Among the award categories are student of distinction, outstanding young alumnus, outstanding fundraiser and outstanding affiliate group.

Nominations can be submitted online and are due by December 1. For a complete list of the awards and descriptions, visit the Alumni Association website.