Durham, North Carolina (USA)
I recently received an amazing invitation from Dr. Shu S. Lin, MD, PhD at Duke University Medical Center. Dr. Lin** and I previously worked together when I was at the Duke cardiothoracic surgery clinic in southern Virginia. Dr. Lin would often rotate up to our facility to help cover the service so the attending surgeon could have a (much-needed) weekend off, so I got to know Dr. Lin fairly well. Dr. Lin is currently the Director of the cardiothoracic intensive care and step-down units, as well as an associate professor of Surgery (cardiovascular and thoracic) and an associate professor in Immunology and Pathology.
I always enjoyed working with Dr. Lin, who is a very calm, quietly brilliant and confident surgeon. He enjoys time with his patients, (and always makes time for them, spending as long as it takes to answer their questions and address their concerns.) He is an elegant surgeon, a throwback to a previous era in surgery – he doesn’t delegate, he manages the smallest details himself.
Working with Dr. Lin at the smaller hospital in Virginia gave me a very different perspective and experience than is typical of interactions with attending surgeons in large volume academic centers. Since our facility was uncluttered with the detritus of academia, with no residents, no students or fellows it was just the surgeon and the NP, which gave me a better chance to know the person inside the surgeon. This is important, because it’s the first thing that often gets lost in academic medicine. It will be interesting to see him here in his native (academic) environment.
During my week down here, I will be interviewing Dr. Lin at length and spending time in Lung Transplant for an upcoming series of articles here at Cirugia de Torax.
Since lung transplantation is such a huge topic, I am devoting a series of articles to my experience here at Duke. As part of the series, I will be publishing articles about the surgeons, the facility itself and more on the lung transplant procedure.
For now, I have including some information on the basics of lung transplantation.
Since many of you are as unfamiliar with lung transplant as I am – I have provided a couple of links that provide a nice overview of Lung transplantation. (Despite working in thoracic surgery for several years, I have never worked with transplant patients, so it’s a learning experience for me as well.)
Roger Steven’s perspective: a patient created website with information on lung transplantation, as well as his own story. Mr. Stevens had a double-lung tranplant in 1997 (at the University of Maryland).
Patient education guide from the American Society of Transplant - (a little dated but written in a patient friendly fashion. (pdf)
Duke affiliated websites:
Lung Transplant friends – a support group for patients at Duke undergoing lung transplantation.
I will be updating these links periodically.
** In-depth article based on interviews with Dr. Shu S. Lin pending.