Cedars-Sinai

Medical Staff Pulse Newsletter

Meetings and Events

Physician Efficiency Training
July 20

Transcranial Doppler for Comprehensive Stroke Care
Aug. 11-13

Pancreatic Cancer Conference
Sept. 10

These events and more are listed in the medical staff calendar on the Cedars-Sinai website.


Grand Rounds

Click here to view upcoming grand rounds.


Upcoming CME Conferences

Click below to view a complete list of all scheduled Continuing Medical Education conferences.

CME Newsletter - July 2016 (PDF)


Milestones

Do you know of a significant event in the life of a medical staff member? Please let us know, and we'll post these milestones in Medical Staff Pulse. Also, feel free to submit comments on milestones, and we'll post the comments in the next issue. Click here to submit your milestones and comments.

Inpatient E-Prescribing of Discharge Medications Starts July 30

Starting July 30, inpatient providers will be able to send most discharge medication orders electronically within CS-Link in a process referred to as e-prescribing. Rather than printing, faxing or writing out a prescription, the order will transmit electronically from CS-Link directly to the patient’s preferred pharmacy.

» Read more

Step-by-Step Overview of New End of Life Law

California's new End of Life Option Act took effect on June 9. This law grants terminally ill patients who satisfy specified criteria the legal right to request, receive and self-ingest medications to bring about death as long as a detailed process is followed.

» Read more

Campaign Event Highlights Research Advances

Employees and volunteers across Cedars-Sinai got a glimpse last week of groundbreaking research innovations and discoveries fostered by the Campaign for Cedars-Sinai during a daylong event where senior leaders kicked off the public phase of the fundraising effort. The campaign has an overall goal of raising $600 million by 2018, making it the most ambitious fundraising effort to date.

» Read more

Techstars Couple Takes on Hospital Technology

Yosko

Andriana Nikolova, MD, noticed as a student at Harvard Medical School that while there had been advances in medical techniques, the same could not be said for medical technology. Nikolova, now a cardiology fellow at Cedars-Sinai, and her husband co-founded a company to improve technology efficiencies at hospitals.

» Read more

Active Surveillance of Thyroid Cancer Under Study

Researchers at Cedars-Sinai are conducting a clinical trial that could significantly change treatment for lower-risk thyroid cancers. The Cedars-Sinai study, the first of its kind on the West Coast, is comparing results from the active surveillance of papillary thyroid microcarcinoma to immediate surgery.

» Read more

Circle of Friends Honorees for June

CoF

The Circle of Friends program honored 243 people in June. Circle of Friends allows grateful patients to make a donation in honor of the physicians, nurses, caregivers and others who have made a difference during their time at Cedars-Sinai.

» Read more

Physician News

Margareta D. Pisarska, MD, from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, has been accepted into a national program that prepares exceptional women faculty members for senior leadership. Elliot Hogg, MD, a fellow in the Movement Disorders Program in the Cedars-Sinai Department of Neurology, has been awarded a stipend from the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation.

» Read more

Core Labs Practice Changed for Urine Hemosiderin

Due to low volume, the Core laboratories in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine have begun sending out urine hemosiderin to ARUP laboratories. The change was made July 1.

» Read more

Upgrade to HbA1c Testing Begins Aug. 15

To clinicians utilizing HbA1c testing, effective Aug. 15, in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, HbA1c will be run on the new Premier Hb9210 HbA1c analyzer, which uses an HPLC system.

» Read more

CS-Link Tip: Deleting Notes

cs-link logo

To delete a note in the wide screen view, click the "X" in the bottom left corner of the note. A pop-up will ask "Are you sure you want to delete this note? You cannot undo this action." There are two options at this point: Cancel or "Delete this note."

» Read more

Inpatient E-Prescribing of Discharge Medications Starts July 30

Starting July 30, inpatient providers will be able to send most discharge medication orders electronically within CS-Link in a process referred to as e-prescribing.

Rather than printing, faxing or writing out a prescription, the order will transmit electronically from CS-Link directly to the patient's preferred pharmacy. This capability has been available for some time in the outpatient setting, where it has proven to be efficient and convenient for patients and providers.

Eligible providers, including attendings and residents who have their own medical license, will be able to use the new e-prescribing functionality. Providers with their own Drug Enforcement Administration license (including residents) will also be eligible for e-prescribing of controlled substances.

Physicians who would like to e-prescribe controlled substances must opt in and sign up to obtain a security token, which can be configured on a smartphone. To opt in, please visit the project team during scheduled office hours, which are between Monday, July 18, and Thursday, July 28, from 7-9 a.m. and 4-6 p.m. in the Medical Staff Lounge.

Providers unable to attend the scheduled office hours can contact the help desk after July 18 at 310-423-6428 to initiate the request for a security token.

Contact EIS Physician Leader Shaun Miller, MD, at shaun.miller@cshs.org with any additional questions.

Step-by-Step Overview of New End of Life Law

California's new End of Life Option Act took effect on June 9. This law grants terminally ill patients who satisfy specified criteria the legal right to request, receive and self-ingest medications to bring about death as long as a detailed process is followed.

To help be prepared if or when patients or family members have questions, the Center for Healthcare Ethics has put together a helpful step-by-step overview of the law's requirements.

To access this, please visit the Center for Healthcare Ethics' Intranet site.

Campaign Event Highlights Research Advances

Shlomo Melmed, MD, executive vice president of Academic Affairs and dean of the medical faculty, addresses staff and volunteers last week in Harvey Morse Auditorium at the kickoff for the public phase of the Campaign for Cedars-Sinai.

Employees and volunteers across Cedars-Sinai got a glimpse last week of groundbreaking research innovations and discoveries fostered by the Campaign for Cedars-Sinai during a daylong event where senior leaders kicked off the public phase of the fundraising effort.

The campaign has an overall goal of raising $600 million by 2018, making it the most ambitious fundraising effort to date. It already has collected more than $460 million.

Flora Haus, MSN, RN, an education program coordinator in Nursing Research and Development, listens to a speaker at the event.

"The Campaign for Cedars-Sinai is extraordinary," Thomas M. Priselac, president and CEO, said in a video message played at each of five presentations on July 8 in Harvey Morse Auditorium. "Not only is it the most ambitious fundraising campaign in the history of the institution, but it also focuses on strengthening the partnership between our community philanthropists and you, our staff, and the difference you make every day."

Cedars-Sinai's collective commitment to providing world-class care to patients is critical in raising philanthropic support. Grateful patients compose the majority of Cedars-Sinai's donors. These investments help fund innovative research and technology that lead to groundbreaking advances in patient care.

Speakers at the event outlined the ways that Cedars-Sinai is leading the way in research innovation with new targeted cancer treatments, regenerative medicine testing and understanding the mechanisms for neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS.

"Philanthropy provides great value to this institution," said Linda Burnes Bolton, DrPH, RN, FAAN, health system chief nurse executive, vice president and chief nursing officer. "It has allowed us to expand our staffing from roughly 1,200 nurses to 3,000 nurses and to integrate nursing into all aspects of patient care."

The Campaign for Cedars-Sinai supports interdisciplinary collaboration and research in five areas: disease prevention and control, precision medicine and targeted therapies, aging and longevity, innovations in healthcare and technology, and education and training.

"Through fundraising efforts, researchers at Cedars-Sinai are able to discover breakthrough innovations that have the potential to positively impact the community," Shlomo Melmed, MD, executive vice president of Academic Affairs and dean of the medical faculty, said at the event.

Since its launch on July 1, 2010, the Campaign for Cedars-Sinai has raised most of its funds through major gifts of several thousand dollars or more. The public phase of the campaign, which runs through June 2018, will focus on attracting donors at all levels of support.

"Cedars-Sinai is a world-class healthcare organization in research and teaching, pushing us to the forefront of discoveries," said Arthur J. Ochoa, senior vice president and chief development officer. "Seventy-five percent of our donors are grateful patients, which means grateful patients are the ones helping the institution progress and achieve its goals."

More information about the Campaign for Cedars-Sinai and its fundraising initiatives is available on the Intranet.

Techstars Couple Takes on Hospital Technology

Yosko 220px

Yosko co-founders and husband and wife, Javier Otin and Andriana Nikolova, MD.

First as a student at Harvard Medical School, and later as an internal medicine resident at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Andriana Nikolova, MD, spotted a healthcare paradox.

"On the one hand, there had been so many advances in terms of techniques and medications," said Nikolova. "But in terms of technology, it was like healthcare was stuck in the '80s."

Nikolova who started at Harvard in 2007, pointed to pagers, paper printouts and fax machines as evidence of the technological time warp. She also was puzzled by the way patients were transferred from one care team to another.

"Usually, the daily handoff of patients just involves one shift talking to the next and maybe scribbling some notes," said Nikolova. "Where's the technology?"

Nikolova is working to bridge the tech gaps as the co-founder and chief executive officer of Yosko, a health-tech startup. The company recently rolled out a mobile care-coordination platform for hospitals that improves team collaboration, transitions of care and efficiency in procedural areas.

"Being a physician and an entrepreneur are intricately connected," said Nikolova, who just completed the first year of her cardiology fellowship at the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute. "In clinical practice, you face the limits of medicine and gaps in care, so you start coming up with ideas to address these problems."

Nikolova, who grew up in Yambol, Bulgaria, started the company in 2012 with a Harvard classmate and fellow international student, Javier Otin. From Madrid, Spain, Otin was pursuing a master's degree in information technology.

The business partnership came a year before another partnership between the two – marriage. Nikolova sees the dual relationship as a perfect fit.

"Creating a startup company with a co-founder is like being in a marriage anyway because you spend so much time together and you really need to have a profound connection," Nikolova said.

That connection has taken the couple and their company from Boston to Los Angeles. The coast-to-coast trek was prompted by Nikolova's acceptance into the Cedars-Sinai fellowship – a program that topped her wish list.

"I want to be a cardiologist," she said. "But my long-term vision is to become a heart transplant specialist, and Cedars-Sinai does the most adult heart transplants nationwide. Every single day it's inspiring to interact with the world's leading heart transplant specialists and cardiologists. It's such an honor to be here."

That honor was accompanied by a serendipitous coincidence. As Nikolova was starting her cardiology fellowship, Cedars-Sinai launched a new program designed to help health-tech startups grow and achieve marketplace success.

Called Techstars Healthcare Accelerator, in Partnership with Cedars-Sinai, the venture attracted more than 500 applications worldwide, including one submitted by Nikolova and Otin.

They were among the 11 accepted into the 2016 Healthcare Accelerator class that started on March 28 and concluded on June 23.

For Nikolova and Otin, it was time well spent. They introduced their mobile care-coordination platform, Yosko Flow Manager – which already is being used by the largest hospital system in New York City – to nearly 100 hospital administrators via a webinar.

The pair also developed a second mobile platform. Dubbed Yosko OR Manager, the platform tracks patients prior to scheduled procedures, with an eye toward ensuring that all pre-procedure tests and documents are completed, thus reducing procedure-day delays and cancellations.

The next step is piloting the platform at Cedars-Sinai.

"A year from now, we hope to be actively marketing both of these products," Nikolova said.

Chances are good that additional innovations will be coming.

"This is a profession where you learn something new from your patients and science almost every day," said Nikolova. "You can't help but be inspired and want to create new products and solutions."

Related articles:

Accelerator Demo Day Draws Hundreds (Cedars-Science, July 7, 2016)

Cedars-Sinai, Techstars Team Up for Innovation (Cedars-Science, Oct. 29, 2015)

Active Surveillance of Thyroid Cancer Under Study

Researchers at Cedars-Sinai are conducting a clinical trial that could significantly change treatment for lower risk thyroid cancers.

The Cedars-Sinai study, the first of its kind on the West Coast, is comparing results from the active surveillance of papillary thyroid microcarcinoma to immediate surgery.

Active surveillance of thyroid cancer is modeled after a similar observational method that is becoming more common in the treatment of low-risk prostate cancer. The American Thyroid Association has released new guidelines that suggest that active surveillance is an appropriate option for small, low-risk cancers.

The Cedars-Sinai trial will estimate the rate of thyroid cancer progression over a three-, five- and 10-year period in patients. Treatment includes physical exams, blood tests and ultrasounds every six to 12 months.

The active surveillance study is open to patients 18 years or older with tumors 1.5cm in diameter or smaller. Eligible patients must be able to understand and sign a HIPAA authorization form. Patients who have cancers that have spread to the lymph nodes, hoarseness or high-risk, aggressive cancers do not qualify for the study.

Allen Ho, MD, and Wendy Sacks, MD, co-directors of the Thyroid Cancer Program, say that active surveillance can maintain a patient's quality of life without compromising their survival, depending on tumor size and growth rate.

"There are many thyroid cancers that are slow growing, where aggressive treatment is not necessary," Ho said. "Ninety percent or more of small papillary thyroid cancers are indolent, nonaggressive and unlikely to hurt or kill someone over the course of their lives. Everything is being monitored; we are doing this under the auspices of a trial in a careful, thoughtful way."

Although surgery is a relatively safe and standard treatment for cancer, thyroidectomies can have negative side effects, such as vocal cord paralysis, numbness, tingling and adverse reactions to synthetic hormones including weight gain and loss of energy.

Active surveillance provides an alternative treatment plan for less aggressive cancers. Patients can choose to stop surveillance at any time to undergo surgery, and surgery is recommended if there is growth over time.

"Surgery is not wrong; patients are choosing between two right answers," Sacks said. "We want to offer patients options that match the severity of their disease."

For more information on active surveillance, email allen.ho@cshs.org or wendy.sacks@cshs.org.

Circle of Friends Honorees for June

The Circle of Friends program honored 243 people in June.

Circle of Friends allows grateful patients to make a donation in honor of the physicians, nurses, caregivers and others who have made a difference during their time at Cedars-Sinai. When a gift is made, the person being honored receives a custom lapel pin and a letter of acknowledgement.

Click here for more information about the program and for a list of past honorees.

  • Kenneth Adashek, MD
  • Daniel C. Allison, MD
  • Farin Amersi, MD
  • Neel A. Anand, MD
  • Paula J. Anastasia Davis, MN, RN, AOCN
  • Jennifer T. Anger, MD, MPH
  • Ellen Anifantis, LCSW
  • Gary R. Appel, RN PCCN
  • Joel A. Aronowitz, MD
  • M. William Audeh, MD
  • Laura G. Audell, MD, MS
  • Mark J. Ault, MD
  • Rebeccah Baird, BSN, RN
  • C. Noel Bairey Merz, MD
  • Mark Bamberger, MD
  • Babak R. Bamshad, MD
  • Bruce Baumgarten, MD
  • Gracie Becerra
  • Peiman Berdjis, MD
  • Adriene Bergman
  • Stephanie C. Berkey, RN
  • Robert M. Bernstein, MD
  • Page A. Bertolotti, BSN, RN, OCN
  • Sushma Bhadauria, MD
  • Satinder J. Bhatia, MD
  • Keith L. Black, MD
  • Kathryn H. Bornhurst, RN
  • Swaraj Bose, MD
  • Earl W. Brien, MD
  • Philip G. Brooks, MD
  • Hollis Brown, RN
  • Neil A. Buchbinder, MD
  • Miguel A. Burch, MD
  • Celeste Campbell, RN
  • Ilana Cass, MD
  • Kirk Y. Chang, MD
  • Cheryl G. Charles, MD
  • Timothy Charlton, MD
  • Ray M. Chu, MD
  • Andrew Chuang, MD
  • Alice P. Chung, MD
  • Jeffrey M. Chung, MD
  • Janet M. Clarke-Platt, RN
  • Sara Cooper, MSN, RN, ACNP-BC
  • Stephen R. Corday, MD
  • Maria S. Corral
  • Ram C. Dandillaya, MD
  • Shaun S. Daneshrad, MD
  • Catherine M. Dang, MD
  • Ryan DellaMaggiora, MD
  • Alice R. Dick, MD
  • Ma. Charisma Joy Dondonay
  • Noam Z. Drazin, MD
  • Karyn Eilber, MD
  • Yaron Elad, MD
  • Jonathan C. Ellis, MD
  • Fardad Esmailian, MD
  • L'Tanya P. Fatherree
  • Joel D. Feinstein, MD
  • Eiman Firoozmand, MD
  • Christopher R. Fitzgerald, MD
  • Brian L. Flyer, MD
  • Charles A. Forscher, MD
  • Srinivas Gaddam, MD
  • Steven S. Galen, MD
  • Donna Gallik, MD
  • Sara Ghandehari, MD
  • Armando E. Giuliano, MD
  • Neil J. Goldberg, MD
  • Avivah Golian, MD
  • Jeffrey S. Goodman, MD
  • Martin N. Gordon, MD
  • Richard E. Gould, MD
  • Steven B. Graff-Radford, DDS
  • Stephen L. Graham, MD
  • Jeffrey R. Gramer, MD
  • Abe Green, MD
  • Leland M. Green, MD
  • Solomon I. Hamburg, MD
  • Michele A. Hamilton, MD
  • John G. Harold, MD
  • Michael D. Harris, MD
  • Andrew E. Hendifar, MD
  • Jeremy R. Herman, MD
  • Carlos H. Hernandez
  • Jennifer Hernandez
  • Nareen Hindoyan, MD
  • Allen S. Ho, MD
  • Debra K. Holm
  • Josefina N. Inocentes, RN
  • Gwen Inouye, BSN, RN, CN
  • Stacey Jean-Pierre, PA-C
  • Stanley C. Jordan, MD
  • David Y. Josephson, MD
  • Neel R. Joshi, MD
  • Andrew G. Kadar, MD
  • Marshall L. Kadner, MD
  • Stephanie M. Kagimoto
  • Saibal Kar, MD
  • Sheila Kar, MD
  • Sousan Karimi, MD
  • Beth Y. Karlan, MD
  • Scott R. Karlan, MD
  • Harold L. Karpman, MD
  • David Kawashiri, MD
  • Ilan Kedan, MD, MPH
  • Raj Khandwalla, MD
  • Terrence T. Kim, MD
  • Michelle M. Kittleson, MD, PhD
  • Robert Klapper, MD
  • Marion Karla Klausner, BSN, RN-BC
  • Keith L. Klein, MD
  • Jon A. Kobashigawa, MD
  • Michael A. Kropf, MD
  • David A. Kulber, MD
  • Marcella D. Kurtzman, RN, OCN
  • Phillip L. Levine, MD
  • Meldon C. Levy, MD
  • Michael I. Lewis, MD
  • Ruth Liao, BSN, RN
  • Charlene T. Lichtash, MD
  • Daniel Lieber, MD
  • Michael C. Lill, MD
  • Adinah Lindner, LCSW
  • Gene C. Liu, MD
  • Simon K. Lo, MD
  • Joseph Loewy, MD
  • Jonathan I. Macy, MD
  • Rajendra Makkar, MD
  • Adam N. Mamelak, MD
  • Cindy Margolis, RN
  • Lucy Mathew, NP
  • Ruchi Mathur, MD
  • David N. Matsumura, MD
  • Michael J. Mazouz, MD
  • Paula McAllister, MD
  • Philomena McAndrew, MD
  • Robert J. McKenna Jr., MD
  • Bridget D. McLoughlin, MSN, RN-BC, CCTC
  • Gil Y. Melmed, MD, MS
  • Dorothy T. Melvin
  • Erin Meschter, MD
  • Richard J. Metz, MD
  • Stewart Middler, MD, PhD
  • Rolito A. Mintac
  • Monica M. Mita, MD, MDSc
  • Beth A. Moore, MD
  • Reiad Najjar, MD
  • Youram Nassir, MD
  • Ronald B. Natale, MD
  • Alan C. Newman, DDS
  • Christopher S. Ng, MD
  • David G. Ng, MD
  • Phuc An Nguyen, RN
  • Julia K. Nicholls
  • Nicholas N. Nissen, MD
  • Paul W. Noble, MD
  • Gary F. Nunez
  • Adrian G. Ostrzega, MD
  • Guy D. Paiement, MD
  • Dorothy J. Park, MD
  • Isabel F. Pedraza, MD
  • Rema D. Pendon, RN
  • Brad Penenberg, MD
  • Honorine P. Pengho, RN
  • Zahra Perfect, RN
  • Aaron M. Perlmutter, MD
  • Tiffany Perry, MD
  • Anne L. Peters, MD
  • Edward H. Phillips, MD
  • Malisa Ma Phommasith, BSN, RN
  • Rachel Pikus, RN
  • Edwin M. Posadas, MD
  • Dechu P. Puliyanda, MD
  • Alejandra Quinonez, RN
  • Alexandre Rasouli, MD
  • Nakol L. Ravard
  • Geraldine L. Rice, RN, ASN, AC-BC
  • Jaime E. Richardson, BSN, RN, OCN, CCRP
  • Madison F. Richardson, MD
  • Sepehr Rokhsar, MD
  • Robert M. Rose, MD
  • Barry E. Rosenbloom, MD
  • Fred P. Rosenfelt, MD
  • Jenna Rush, MSN, RN, CCTC
  • Ruth "Virginia" Russell, MD
  • Stephen A. Sacks, MD
  • Supreet Kaur Sahai, MD
  • Tracy Salseth, ACNP-BC
  • Howard M. Sandler, MD, MS
  • Nicole McKee Santeramo, RN
  • Gregory P. Sarna, MD
  • Wouter I. Schievink, MD
  • Maria A. Scremin, MD
  • Prediman K. Shah, MD
  • Bahman Shamloo, MD
  • John L. Sherman, MD
  • Randolph Sherman, MD
  • Elvira T. Shipper, RN
  • Emily Siegel, MD
  • Allan W. Silberman, MD, PhD
  • Alan G. Silverman, MD
  • Amanuel Sima, MD
  • Americo Simonini, MD
  • Steven M. Simons, MD
  • Enrique Slodownik, MD
  • Tourage Soleimani, MD
  • Tracey L. Solitare, BSN, RN, OCN
  • Joyce R. Spalding, RN, PHN, MSN, CDE
  • Andrew Ira Spitzer, MD
  • Jasminka Stegic, MS, ANP-BC, CCRN
  • Jerrold H. Steiner, MD
  • Daniel J. Stone, MD
  • Eric R. Sue, MD
  • Vinay Sundaram, MD
  • Kazu Suzuki, DPM
  • Nicholas R. Szumski, MD
  • Lillian Szydlo, MD
  • Steven W. Tabak, MD
  • Michele Tagliati, MD
  • Michael Tahery, MD
  • Elsie M. Tan
  • David B. Thordarson, MD
  • Scott S. Topiol, BSN, RN, CEN
  • Stephen P. Townsend, BSN, RN
  • Tram T. Tran, MD
  • Alfredo Trento, MD
  • Eric Vasiliauskas, MD
  • Robert A. Vescio, MD
  • Billy O. Villao
  • Olga Voroshilovsky, MD
  • Erica T. Wang, MD
  • Xunzhang Wang, MD
  • Esther Warwick, BSN, RN-BC
  • Jason L. Weiner, Rabbi
  • Michael H. Weisman, MD
  • Anne N. Winfrey, RN
  • Robert N. Wolfe, MD
  • Edward M. Wolin, MD
  • Philip A. Yalowitz, MD
  • Christopher Zarembinski, MD
  • Tatyana Zhuzhina, RN
  • Raymond Zimmer, MD

Physician News

Pisarska Chosen for Elite Leadership Program

Margareta D. Pisarska, MD

Margareta D. Pisarska, MD, who directs the Fertility and Reproductive Medicine Center and the Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility in the Cedars-Sinai Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, has been accepted into an international program that prepares exceptional women faculty members for senior leadership positions at academic health centers.

Pisarska, an associate professor, is the second Cedars-Sinai physician to join the highly competitive Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine fellowship. The first, Ilana Cass, MD, professor and vice chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, completed the fellowship in 2013. Only 54 fellows were accepted into this year's class.

The yearlong fellowship is part of Drexel University College of Medicine's International Center for Executive Leadership in Academics. Fellows, nominated by their institutes' leaders, participate in online classes and in-residence sessions that will begin in September. They sharpen their skills in strategic finance, organizational change and leadership, and develop projects to advance the goals of their home institutions.

Sarah Kilpatrick, MD, PhD, the Helping Hand of Los Angeles Chair in Obstetrics and Gynecology and professor and chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, completed this executive leadership program in 1998. "It is a huge honor not only for Dr. Pisarska but also for Cedars-Sinai to have a faculty member admitted to this program," said Kilpatrick, who is also associate dean for faculty development.

Pisarska heads a laboratory at Cedars-Sinai that investigates reproductive biology, including ovarian physiology and the roles played by genetics and epigenetics in adverse pregnancy outcomes associated with infertility treatments. She chairs the Patient Education Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and belongs to the Society for Reproductive Investigation and the Society of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility.


Neurology Fellow Awarded Stipend to Study Dystonia

Elliot Hogg, MD

Elliot Hogg, MD, a fellow in the Movement Disorders Program in the Cedars-Sinai Department of Neurology, has been awarded a $75,000 stipend from the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation, an organization that advocates for dystonia patients. The stipend will support his research on the long-term effects of pallidal deep brain stimulation (DBS) on patients with dystonia, a disorder that causes involuntary contractions and spasms of muscles.

Pallidal DBS is a neurosurgical procedure that involves implanting a medical device to deliver electrical impulses to the globus pallidus, a brain structure that controls movement.

"I'm very excited to be a part of this fellowship," said Hogg. "This award gives us an opportunity to better understand dystonia and the long-term benefits of DBS so that physicians can advise patients and their caregivers on the best treatments to improve their quality of life."

Hogg completed medical school at the Keck School of Medicine of USC and a neurology residency at Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center. His mentor for the dystonia project is Michele Tagliati, MD, director of the Movement Disorders Program, professor and vice chair in the Department of Neurology.

Core Labs Practice Changed for Urine Hemosiderin

Due to low volume, the Core laboratories in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine have begun sending out urine hemosiderin to ARUP laboratories. The change was made July 1.

Urine hemosiderin is sometimes ordered to detect hemosiderinuria, secondary to excess hemolysis, as with incompatible blood transfusions, severe acute hemolytic anemia, or hemochromatosis. However, it is not a front-line test for these purposes.

Other assessment like visible plasma and/or urine hemoglobin, or direct antiglobulin (Coombs) testing after a transfusion can be used to pick up incompatible transfusions.

For acute hemolytic anemia, the lab workup can include a complete blood cell count, peripheral blood smear, lactate dehydrogenase, haptoglobin, and indirect bilirubin.

After diagnosis, hemochromatosis can be assessed by evaluating serum transferrin saturation. The methodology will not change; urine hemosiderin will be continued to be performed by microscopy via the reference laboratory.

With any questions regarding this change, please contact Kimia Sobhani at kimia.sobhani@cshs.org or Holli Mason at holli.mason@cshs.org.

Upgrade to HbA1c Testing Begins Aug. 15

To clinicians utilizing HbA1c testing, effective Aug. 15, in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, HbA1c will be run on the new Premier Hb9210 HbA1c analyzer, which uses an HPLC system.

The Premier instrument is an upgrade of the current Ultra2 Affinity HbA1c analyzer (HPLC system) with the following advantages:

  • Faster analysis time from two minutes per sample to approximately one minute per sample
  • Upgraded sample barcoding system which eliminates human error and accommodates a continuous loading system allowing new specimens to be added

Correlation to the existing platform demonstrated essentially 1:1 reproducibility of results with no perceivable bias.

Results for Glycated Hgb and Average Glucose (results currently being provided) will not be reported on the new instrument. Results reported will only be for HbA1c.

With questions regarding this change, please contact Delma Ines or Allan Gayacao of the Special Testing Section at 310-423-5571.

Here are the upgrades of the new instrument:

  • Analysis time — from two minutes per sample to approximately one minute per sample
  • Upgraded the software to include Peak Analysis and Result flagging to screen, detect and hold samples that do not meet the acceptable analysis criteria
  • Upgraded from a manual sample barcoding system to an integrated auto-sampler and barcoding to accommodate a continuous loading system
  • Upgraded to having an on-board reagent/column expiration monitoring/tracking system
  • Upgraded to having an on-board reagent level alert system to notify the operator when to replace reagents/column
  • A much more user-friendly operating system that has quick access functions for the operator

CS-Link Tip: Deleting Notes

To delete a note in the wide screen view, click the "X" in the bottom left corner of the note. A pop-up will ask, "Are you sure you want to delete this note? You cannot undo this action."

There are two options at this point: Cancel or "Delete this note." Pressing delete will eliminate the message.

Learn to be more efficient by attending a Physician Efficiency Training session. Classes are held in the Cafeteria Conference Room C. The last class in July will be held Wednesday, July 20, 5 p.m.-6:30 p.m.

If you have questions, email groupeisphysicians@cshs.org.