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    Researching to advance military medicine

    Researching to advance military medicine

    Photo By Marcy Sanchez | (From left) Capt. Bethany Heidenreich, Rebecca Smiley, and Capt. Edgie-Mark Co, were...... read more read more



    Story by Marcy Sanchez 

    William Beaumont Army Medical Center Public Affairs Office

    Dozens of research presentations were displayed and discussed during William Beaumont Army Medical Center’s annual Research Day at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, El Paso, Texas, May 9.

    The event showcased WBAMC Graduate Medical Education resident and faculty research podium and poster presentations covering the health care spectrum from shoe selection in military cadets to robot-assisted surgery in the Department of Defense.

    This year’s Research Day, hosted by WBAMC’s Department of Clinical Investigations (DCI), welcomed keynote speaker, Navy Capt. Joseph Cohn, division chief for research programs at the Defense Health Agency.

    “The research they are doing here could help facilitate the movement of those ideas into products,” said Cohn, a Chicago native. “You can take an idea in the DOD and turn that into research to close a gap (in a medical theory or practice). If successful, that idea becomes a product and gets fielded to health care professionals.”

    Nearly 30 presentations encouraged peer discussions to better prepare researchers for follow-on investigations and study.

    “There’s so many questions to ask under one research area, you can’t fund all of them. There’s always another question,” said Cohn. “We have an effort looking at (different issues) there’s no reason why we shouldn’t find a way to link them (with larger DOD initiatives in the same field) so we can all benefit. We must advocate for finding better ways of linking the clinical investigation program projects with the big projects that we fund.”

    “In order to address medical gaps, in knowledge or capability, we need to use what has been discussed here to figure out what the basic problem is and generate solutions through research,” said Capt. Edgie-Mark Co, a third year internal medicine resident at WBAMC. “It’s not a quick process, but we need to invest in that avenue of study, conduct the research, have those resources and translate that into medical knowledge or procedures (to progress military medicine).”

    According to Cohn, WBAMC’s Research Day will give him a better understanding of the type of research doctors are conducting at the point of care. Moreover, it will better prepare DHA to support progress in military medical research, in turn supporting the warfighter globally.

    Soldiers and faculty members were recognized for their research efforts including microbiologist Rebecca Smiley for her podium presentation titled “Curcumin Induces Cell-cycle Arrest and Apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 Breast Tumor Cells,” and Capt. Bethany Heidenreich for her poster presentation titled, “Differentiated Liposarcoma of the Rectum: A Rare Tumor in an even Rarer Location.” Heidenreich was also recognized as the resident researcher of the year along with Co.

    Co, who was recently recognized nationally for research concerning latent visceral leishmaniasis in Iraq war veterans, a parasitic disease transmitted by sand flies which may cause chronic fever, weight loss, spleen issues and pancytopenia. During the presentation, Co’s most recent research studied the attitudes and barriers toward HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis among U.S. Army healthcare providers.

    “What we’re recommending, is to develop programs to teach our frontline providers the benefits and procedures of this particular intervention (prophylaxis),” said Co, a native of Murrieta, California. “If we have trained personnel that get HIV that makes them mission incapable (because of non deployability), and that’s a loss to the army.”

    According to Co, who has conducted various research during his residency at WBAMC, the challenge of postgraduate studies and conducting research is intimidating but worthwhile.

    “You almost have to wear multiple hats,” said Co. “It’s very challenging but rewarding to see the full spectrum of using clinical knowledge to identify that gap, using that knowledge, generating a question and answering it.”



    Date Taken: 05.21.2018
    Date Posted: 05.21.2018 11:49
    Story ID: 277741
    Location: EL PASO, TX, US 
    Hometown: CHICAGO, IL, US
    Hometown: MURRIETA, CA, US

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