News & Events
Dr. Metzger Publishes in Oxford Academic Pain Medicine Journal
Dr. Sarita Metzger (PGY-2), with the aid of supervisor Dr. Donna Sudak, collaborated with the psychiatry departments of Mt. Sinai and Natchaug Hospital to publish a report examining the extent of pain management training during psychiatry residency. The researchers administered a national survey to U.S. psychiatry residency program directors; the survey included inquiries about attitudes toward pain management training, hours dedicated to education, clinical exposure, supervision, and barriers to training/participating in interdisciplinary pain management teams. The article is available online.
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Drexel Residents at APA Annual Meeting
Drexel Psychiatry’s team, which included Drs. Aarya Rajalakashmi, Aditya Pawar and Prasad Joshi (PGY-3), competed in this year’s APA Mind Games. They placed third overall in this Jeopardy-style competition. In addition, Drs. Kiren Johal (PGY-1) and Katarzyna Liwski (PGY-3) presented their poster "Open Mole: Exploring the Relationship Between Culture, Development, PTSD and Psychosis."
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Colloquium of Scholars
Drexel Psychiatry held the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society’s annual Colloquium of Scholars conference on April 3, 2019. Residents presented original research and case reports.
Dr. Rajalakshmi accepting her award
Dr. Aarya Rajalakshmi (PGY-3) won first place in the original research category for her poster about examining the use of long-acting antipsychotic injectables in children and adolescents. Dr. Rajalakshmi also won the cognitive behavioral formulation contest, and Dr. Dimal Shah earned first place in the psychodynamic formulation contest. Posters presented by Drexel residents included:
- Dr. Sarita Metzger (PGY-2): "Pseudoneurotic Schizophrenia Revisited: A Case Study"
- Dr. Uchechukwu Ogbuawa (PGY-2): "Pseudologia Fantastical: A Tale of Tales"
- Dr. Aarya Rajalakshmi (PGY-3): "A Systemic Approach to Examining the Use of Long Acting Injectable Antipsychotics in Children and Adolescents"
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Drexel Psychiatry Residents to Compete in APA Mind Games
The American Psychiatric Association's Mind Games were created to “stimulate and challenge residents” regarding their psychiatric knowledge. Each year, programs register their team with the APA. Once a team is established, the first round is an electronic exam, 115 questions in 60 minutes. The ten top-scoring teams nationwide are then announced, and the top three teams are invited to compete in a live round during the APA Annual Meeting. This year Drexel's team, which includes Drs. Rajalakshmi, Pawar and Joshi (PGY-3), were one of the top three teams. They will be representing Drexel in May at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.
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Third Annual LGBTQ Symposium
Dr. Phillip Arellano (PGY-3), with the aid of Drs. Metzger and Artunduaga (PGY-2) and the College of Medicine's LGBTQ interest group, successfully led the third annual LGBTQ Symposium held at Drexel University College of Medicine. A total of 115 attendees – medical students, residents and attendings – learned about the standards and implications of medical care within the LGBTQ community. Discussions challenged the awareness and perception of trainees and attendings alike. Topics highlighted the fluidity of gender identity, expression, sex and attraction, as well as medical and surgical treatments afforded to individuals and family members seeking gender confirmation.
Presentations during the symposium included:
- “Major Health Care Disparities in LGBTQ Individuals”
Issa DiSciullo, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
With an introuduction from Ana Nunez, MD, Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Drexel University College of Medicine
- “Standards of Mental Health care for Gender Non-conforming People”
Sara Nobel, DO, Psychiatry Attending, Einstein Medical Center
- “Medical Care for Gender Variant Youth”
Zachary McClain, MD, Director, Gender and Sexuality Development Clinic, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
- “Surgical Considerations in Transgender Health”
Ashley Brandt, DO, Transgender Surgery Fellow, Hahnemann University Hospital
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Residents Attend and Present at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) Conference
Drs. Aarya Rajalakshmi and Aditiya Pawar attended the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry annual conference held in Seattle, Washington, October 22-27. They presented their research poster, "A Systemic Approach to Examining the Use of Long-Acting Injectable Antipsychotics in Children and Adolescents."
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Annual Suicide Prevention Walk
On October 7, Drexel psychiatry residents participated in the annual Philadelphia Out of Darkness Suicide Walk. Special recognition goes to Dr. Mikal Hicks-Black, former resident and current child and adolescent fellow, who has organized Drexel's participation for the past few years. According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the over 600 teams participating in this year's walk raised approximately $580,000!
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Drexel Residents Attend Seminar About Asylum Evaluations
The Philadelphia Human Rights Clinic (PHRC) is a student-run organization with a mission to provide no-cost psychiatric and physical evaluations of survivors of persecution seeking asylum in the United States. PHRC was founded in 2012 as a collaboration between Physicians for Human Rights and medical students of and physicians at the University of Pennsylvania, and includes members from Drexel University College of Medicine. Residents in attendance were able to learn about immigration and asylum processes in the U.S., and how to construct a medical affidavit of support for survivors of torture or human rights abuse who seek asylum.
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Philadelphia Psychiatric Society Residents’ Night
Several Drexel psychiatry residents were able to attend the Residents' Night hosted by the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society (PPS). This event is hosted annually by the PPS to encourage networking and collaboration among the Philadelphia psychiatry residency programs.
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2018 Drexel Psychiatry Graduation Ceremony
June 21, 2018, marked an exciting new beginning for Drexel’s Adult Psychiatry Residency graduates. The graduation ceremony and reception took place at Tendenza, where family, friends, colleagues and faculty gathered to join the celebration. While part of the celebration honored the new graduates, another recognized individual faculty, staff and resident accomplishments.
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Dr. Aditya Pawar Publishes in JAMA
PGY-2 resident Dr. Aditya Pawar was one of the lead contributors in a prominent systemic review article in the renowned journal JAMA*. This article addresses the long-debated question of whether integration of early interventional services among early-phased psychotic patients produces more optimal outcomes as compared to treatment as usual. By creating a meta-analysis, Dr. Pawar and others clearly negated their null hypothesis; early intervention is in fact a key component to optimizing long-term treatment and outcomes in the noted population.
*Correll CU, Galling B, Pawar A, et al. Comparison of Early Intervention Services vs Treatment as Usual for Early-Phase PsychosisA Systematic Review, Meta-analysis, and Meta-regression. JAMA Psychiatry.2018;75(6):555–565.
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Residents Present at APA 2018
The American Psychiatric Association held its annual meeting in New York City May 5-9, 2018. Many of our residents, listed below, participated in the poster presentation segment. Additionally, two of our residents presented therapy related workshops. Chief resident Dr. Taormina discussed the challenges of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) and ways to overcome barriers to effective treatment. PGY-3 resident Dr. Mangiardi educated the audience on behavioral activation and high-yield CBT for brief sessions.
Resident presenters included:
Dr. Wisniewski: "Structuring a Music Medicine Session in the Psychiatric Outpatient Setting"
Dr. Messih: "Working with Survivors of Conversion Therapy: A Case Report"
Drs. Messih and Mohabbat: "Assessing Symptom Time Course in Treatment Planning: A Case Presentation of Cycloid Psychosis"
Drs. Arellano and Parker: “Early Detection and Management of Clozapine-induced Myocarditis: A Case Report
Dr. Rajalakshmi: “First Manic Episode Following the use of Disulfiram” and “Phantom Visions – Charles Bonnet Plus Syndrome or Late Onset Paraphrenia”
Dr. Pawar: "Folie a Deux in Identical Twins in an Immigrant Family with Review of Literature"
Drs. Liwski and Parker: “Social Media’s Impact on Non-suicidal Self-injury in Adolescents"
Dr. Shah: "Ketamine Infusion as Bridging Agent to Adjunctive Lithium Therapy in Treatment Resistant Depression: A Case Report and Literature Review”
Dr. Co: "Culture and Grief: The Confluence of Physical and Emotional Pain"
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Dr. Sara Bachani Publishes in the BMC Psychiatry
PGY-3 resident Dr. Sara Bachani is a contributing author to the recently published article "Suicide and Deliberate Self-Harm in Pakistan: A Scoping Review." Some conclusions of this article* include:
a. There is a lack of data on rates of suicide in Pakistan, partly due to over two-thirds of the population living in rural settings.
b. There remains a stigma within Pakistan regarding suicide and, in fact, suicide remains a criminal act under law. However, some efforts have been made, including the Mental Health Act of 2001.
c. Risk factors for suicide in Pakistan include: married women, unemployment, low socioeconomic status/education.
*Shekhani SS, Perveen S, Hashmi D-S, Akbar K, Bachani S, and Khan MM (2018). Suicide and deliberate self-harm in Pakistan: a scoping review. BMC Psychiatry, 18, 44.
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2018 Colloquium of Scholars
Drexel hosted the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's 2018 Colloquium of Scholars on April 14. Many of our residents presented at the event, and a number received honors for their work. Learn more about the event.
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Residents Showcase Upcoming Projects on Research Day
Drexel Psychiatry is a strong proponent of research and scholarly activity. Research Day exemplifies the program and residents' dedication to contributing meaningfully to the scientific literature. Approximately one-quarter of the current residents have ongoing projects. They were able to share their work with their peers on Research Day.
- Dr. Metzger (PGY-1) had preliminary data on the current state of pain management education for psychiatry residents.
- Dr. Newton (PGY4) explained the need for education on perinatal psychiatry in psychiatric residency curricula.
- Dr. Messih (PGY-3) gave an update on the systems of care study and the need for open clinics for certain populations.
- Dr. Joshi (PGY-2) introduced the novel role of suvorexant an, orexin-receptor blocker, for the treatment of schizophrenia and concurrent substance use disorder.
- Dr. Mohabbat (PGY-3) explored the cellular mechanisms of cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia.
- Dr. Mangiardi (PGY-3) explained how he is studying cognition in a developmental disruption model of schizophrenia.
Resident participants in the Drexel Psychiatry Research Day
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2018 Resident Retreat
Once a year, our residents have the opportunity to get together to share experiences and partake in team-building exercises. This year the psychiatry classes of 2018 through 2021 retreated to Ocean City, New Jersey. Although weather did not permit many activities on the ocean, residents enjoyed their time indoors cooking, reading, playing board games and more. In addition to the fun activities, more serious discussions involving the program’s wellness, call, didactics, pros and cons were deliberated.
An important part of our residency, the retreat fostered community among classes, created a judgment-free environment, and enabled residents to share their experiences and suggestions about the program.
Members of the PGY-2 class of the Adult Psychiatry Residency program at our annual resident retreat
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Residents Attend Philadelphia Psychiatric Society’s Fourth Annual Addiction Symposium
PGY-1 and PGY-2 residents attended the Fourth Annual Addiction Symposium held at Thomas Jefferson University. At the symposium they learned relevant, up-to-date information regarding treatment of cannabis-, opiate- and alcohol-use disorders.
Dr. Dimal Shah (PGY-2) presented a poster that earned him top prize among participants. He offered a case report involving dextromethorphan overdose, a ubiquitous compound with rising rates of abuse among young adults, noting that proper and rapid management are imperative to reverse/prevent complications.
Dr. Shah presenting his research poster at the 2018 Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's Addiction Symposium
Drexel Adulty Psychiatry Residency attendees at the symposium
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Dr. Stephanie Taormina Published in Current Psychiatry
Chief resident Dr. Stephanie Taormina recently co-authored a manuscript pearl with Dr. Donna Sudak on the integration of brief CBT in medication management. This manuscript was published in Current Psychiatry. Dr. Taormina identifies steps to implement brief CBT including developing a treatment target, designing an intervention, providing handouts and written explanations. She illustrates this strategy via a case report on a patient diagnosed with major depressive disorder.
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Residents' Child & Adolescent Fellowship Matches
On January 3, 2018, the child and adolescent psychiatry fellowship match results were released. This year, Drexel Psychiatry had eight applicants, all of whom matched into desirable programs across the country. Congratulations and best wishes to the future child psychiatrists.
Matched programs included:
- Drexel University
- George Washington
- Johns Hopkins
- Mt. Sinai
- University of Rochester
- University of Southern California
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Drs. Liwski and Parker present at Patient Safety and Risk Management Meeting
At this year’s Pennsylvania Psychiatry Society Patient Safety and Risk Management Meeting, Drs. Kathy Liwski and Matthew Parker (PGY-2 residents) presented an intriguing and novel case-report poster regarding the role social media plays on adolescents and non-suicidal self-injurious behavior. Their presentation earned them a third place prize. They hope to continue researching and possibly help implement future changes surrounding this relevant topic.
Dr. Shelly Co Published in AJP Residents’ Journal
Congratulations to Dr. Shelly Co, second-year Drexel Psychiatry resident, who recently published the lead article in the November 2017 American Journal of Psychiatry’s Residents’ Journal. The title of the article was "The Supreme Court, Child Abuse, and the Role of the State." Dr. Co's article focused on the unfortunate case of DeShaney v. Winnebago County Department of Social Services, a case in which county and state officials allowed a child abuse victim to be returned to his abuser, at which point the victim was grievously injured by the abuser. The lawsuit filed with the Supreme Court argued that the state's failure to protect the child constituted a violation of the Due Process Clause, but the Court found that this was not true. In essence, “There was no constitutional duty for states to protect child abuse victims, however individual states may establish their own laws to define state responsibility to the victims of child abuse.” Dr. Co pointedly illustrates what she perceives as the flaws of this case and raises the question of what role the state take on, along with its accountability for “what happens next” once mandated reporting of child abuse has taken place.
Awards at Benjamin Rush Gala
The Philadelphia Psychiatric Society held the 118th annual Benjamin Rush Gala on November 10, 2017. This event is held to honor those who have significantly contributed to the field of psychiatry, specifically within Philadelphia. Awardees are nominated by their peers and mentors. This year one former Drexel chief resident, Dr. Fran Smith (Class of 2017), and one current PGY-3 resident, Dr. Mark Messih, received the Resident Achievement Award and Resident Research Award, respectively.
The Resident Achievement Award is given to a resident who has demonstrated exemplary achievement within Philadelphia. During his time at Drexel, Dr. Smith was dedicated to promoting mental health awareness within the LGBTQ community. After being inspired and moved by his first clinical transgender patient, he spent his third and chief years developing the first psychiatric LGBTQ colloquium. Not stopping there, he was integral in developing citywide strategies to aid physicians and psychiatrists working with the LGBTQ community.
The Resident Research Award is given to a resident who is the primary author of a research paper suitable for publication. Dr. Messih’s innate writing talent, thirst for learning and interest in qualitative research deservingly received this award. During his three years at Drexel, he has had notable articles published discussing the LGBTQ community, refugee populations, and underserved communities.
Drexel Residents Attend PPS Residents’ Night
Drexel was well represented at Pennsylvania Psychiatric Society Residents’ Night. The event took place at Bourbon Blue in Manayunk on September 13, 2017. Residents, medical students and faculty from the various psychiatric training programs interacted and provided a forum for open discussion. Drs. Dimal Shah (PGY-2), Julian Artunduaga (PGY-1), Travis Dichoso (PGY-1), Sarita Metzger (PGY-1) and Michael Pelekanos (PGY-1) were in attendance.
Drs. Mangiardi and Thangaraj Attend DevelopMental Leaders Retreat
The Pennsylvania Psychiatric Society hosted a leadership seminar in Hershey, Pennsylvania, from August 4 – 5, 2017. Drs. Thangaraj and Mangiardi were selected to attend. The meeting consisted of various discussions and hands-on workshops regarding health care issues.
2nd Annual LGBT Symposium
The second annual Drexel Psychiatry LGBT Symposium was held on July 12, 2017, at Friends Hospital. This symposium was organized by two of Drexel’s Psychiatry Residents, Drs. Mark Messih (PGY-3) and Philip Arellano (PGY-2).
The keynote speaker was Dr. Richard Limoges, clinical associate professor of psychiatry at Drexel University. Dr. Limoges has been practicing and advocating for the LGBT community for over two decades. He humbly honored the audience by presenting his personal and professional endeavors and struggles trying to promote awareness within the psychiatric and medical community about the importance of understanding and supporting members of the LGBT community. His storytelling abilities took the audience through historic time periods when LGBT people were dismissed and shunned to a now more accepting time, where shifts in attitudes within psychiatry, medicine and the general population have occurred.
In addition, Drs. Sarah Nobel, attending physician at Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, and Zachary McClain, assistant professor of clinical pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine, provided vital information regarding the role of psychiatrists in aiding this community. Dr. Nobel laid out the framework and current standards of mental health care for gender non-conforming individuals. Dr. McClain discussed the topic of medical care for gender variant youth. Both physicians have been leaders within this community, establishing well-known clinics for LGBT adults and adolescents, respectively.
Drs. Messih and Arellano ended the day with a review of the highlights and information learned from the professionals and future goals within the LGBT community and the field of psychiatry.
Drs. Aditya Pawar and Aarya Rajalakshmi Recently Published
Drs. Aditya Pawar and Aarya Rajalakshmi recently contributed to two published articles. Dr. Pawar was involved with a review of digitally assisted parent training programs (DPTs) targeting the treatment of children and adolescents with disruptive behaviors. Dr. Rajalakshmi was involved with a case report of a clozapine-stabilized, treatment-resistant bipolar disorder patient with ovarian carcinoma requiring chemotherapy.
“Technology-Assisted Parent Training Programs for Children and Adolescents With Disruptive Behaviors: A Systematic Review”
Baumel A, Pawar A, Mathur N, Kane JM & Correll CU
J Clin Psychiatry. doi: 10.4088/JCP.16r11063, PMID: 28493653 (2017)
“Use of clozapine alongside chemotherapy in a treatment-resistant bipolar disorder patient with ovarian carcinoma: A case report and brief review”
Pakhre A, Krishnan A, Pattanayak RD & Khandelwal SK
Indian J Psychiatry, 58(4), 462-466. doi: 10.4103/0019-5545.196711, PMID: 28197007 (2016)
June 8, 2017, marked the graduation of Drexel’s Adult and Child Psychiatry Residency/ Fellowship Program Class of 2017. The ceremony took place at Tedenza Hall. During this momentous event, friends, family members, co-residents and professors gathered to recognize the individual and collaborative achievements of this class. For most of the graduates, their education continues with fellowship training, while others have chosen to delve directly into the psychiatric inpatient/outpatient profession (see Recent Graduate Placement).
Many residents, faculty and staff were recognized for their contributions within the program regarding community outreach, academics, didactics, medical student outreach and more. Drs. Manoharan, Divakarla, Smith, Pandhi and Zaveri were recognized for their service as chief residents and fellows, and for taking on the responsibility of overseeing and advocating for the entire residency program class, as well as mediating interactions between residents and attendings.
Below are the additional awards given in order of program year:
Dr. Rajalakshmi: Excellence in Journal Club Presentation
Dr. Thangaraj: Excellence in Medical Student Teaching
Dr. Vulas: Excellence in Consultation & Liaison Service
Dr. Mangiardi: Excellence in PMCU Service
Dr. Messih: Excellence in Scholarly Activity
Dr. Rowan: Excellence in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Dr. Taormina: Excellence in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Dr. Ayub: Excellence in Scholarly Activity
Dr. Divakarla: Excellence in Teaching
Dr. Manoharan: Excellence in Resident Wellness
Dr. Hicks-Black: Excellence in Community Service
Dr. Smith: Excellence in Diversity
The residents also recognized the following staff from Hahnemann University Hospital, Northwest Human Services, the 1427 Vine Street Clinic, Abington Memorial Hospital and Friends Hospital:
- Ms. Fields
- Ms. Moyer
- Mr. Kelly
- Ms. McCarthy
- Mr. D’Arco
- Dr. Magnani
- Dr. Patnaik
- Dr. Fallon
- Dr. Bedrick
- Dr. Waheed
- Dr. Oluwabusi
2017 APA Annual Meeting
Drexel was well represented at this year’s American Psychiatric Association Annual Meeting in sunny San Diego, California. Six residents exhibited their work in the Medical Student/Resident Poster Competition. Congratulations to the following:
Mark Messih, MD
Swaminathan Thangaraj, DO
Charles Wisniewski, DO
Shahana Ayub, MD
Francis Smith, MD
Swati Divakarla, MD
Residents Attend Annual Retreat
Once a year, each subspecialty affords residents the opportunity to get together to share experiences and partake in team-building exercises. This year the psychiatry residency class retreated to the remote parts of the Poconos. There is always uncertainty in combining 20 plus distinct characters in one location for consecutive days. However, with uncertainty comes excitement and new enriching possibilities. During this retreat each event – whether it was blindfolded games or more serious discussions regarding didactics – had a purpose:
- To strengthen the ties among residents and between classes
- To create a judgement free environment promoting new ideas
- To analyze the strengths and weakness of the program
- To assess how to implement new strategies.
Dr. Mikal Hicks-Black Works with the Broad Street Ministry
Dr. Mikal Hicks-Black organized a community service event for a group of residents to go to the Broad Street Ministry. There were 10 in total who participated in serving local individuals struggling with homelessness in the city of Philadelphia. This is an organization that we have also provided with clothing donations and supplies in the recent winter months. During that day, residents from psychiatry, neurology and internal medicine attended and help serve.
2017 Colloquium of Scholars
Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's 'Colloquium of Scholars' was held at the College of Medicine's Queen Lane Campus. The following Drexel residents submitted posters:
PGY-1: Aditya Pawar, MD; Aarya Rajakshmi, MD; Dimal Shah, MD; Katarzyna Liwski, DO; Phillip Arellano, MD
PGY-2: Abena Apraku, MD; Damira Vulas, MD; Mark Messih, MD; Mario Mangiardi, MD; Swaminathan Thangaraj, DO, Yasmin Mohabbat, MD
PGY-3: Shahana Ayub, MD
Dr. Swati Divakarla was one of eight residents nationally to receive the "Resident Recognition Award for Excellence in Family Oriented Care" for 2017 - being awarded by the Association of Family Psychiatrists. Aditya Pawar, MD, Aarya Rajakshmi, MD, and Katie Newton, DO, were the Drexel representatives for the Mind Games competition. They finished in an impressive 2nd place.
Dr. Mark Messih Wins Honorable Mention in Writing Contest, Presents at Meeting
Dr. Mark Messih participated a recent writer's contest organized by The Psychiatric Times, and won an honorable mention. This was a writing contest in which readers were invited to write about a single patient who made them a better psychiatrist. Mark also presented a poster on Wellness at this year's AADPRT meeting. This poster was also submitted to Academic Psychiatry in the format of a letter to the editor. We are also eager to see his next publication very soon: "Psychiatry and LGBT Patients: How Can We Do 'Better'?" in the American Journal of Psychiatry Resident's Journal (in press).
Dr. Shahana Ayub Publishes, Presents
Dr. Shahana Ayub co-authored a review article titled "Traumatic Brain Injury and Neuropsychiatric Complications" in the Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine. She is also working with Dr. Donna Sudak on a manuscript that is expected to be published soon. She will present two posters at APA this May.
Dr. Mikal Hicks-Black Organizes Participation in Out of the Darkness Walk
Dr. Mikal Hicks-Black, fourth-year resident, organized the residency program’s involvement with the Out of the Darkness Walk in Philadelphia. Every year, suicide claims the lives of so many people nationwide. Families, children and local communities are forever altered by the impact it has.
This year on the morning of Sunday, October 2, our group of adult psychiatry residents participated in the Out of the Darkness Walk. Joining the sea of people wearing shirts in memory of their loved ones, we started at the steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum and walked in solidarity. Our group was represented in bright blue t-shirts designed by a local printing company — a color demonstrating our support as mental health clinicians. In our effort to continue bringing suicide awareness we were able to accomplish our financial goal and donate to local charity organizations dedicated to educating the public. Given the nature of our work and passion as residents we plan to participate in future walks.
Dimal Shah, Mikal Hicks-Black, Abena Apraku, Katarzyna Liwski, Basant Nassar and Shelley Co at the 2016 Out of the Darkness suicide prevention walk.
Dr. Francis Smith Attends Healthcare Improvement Conference
Dr. Francis Smith, a fourth-year chief resident, attended the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) conference "Better Quality Through Better Measurement" on September 27, 2016, in Philadelphia. The focus of this daylong IHI Quick Course was to promote quality measurements in health care systems through understanding variation conceptually and statistically by using run and control charts.
Aneshree Moodley, MD, Provides HIV Lecture
Aneshree Moodley, MD, a Mandela Washington Fellow, visited our program and gave a special lecture on the association between methamphetamine abuse and HIV risk behaviors among the mentally ill. Her lecture was extremely well received by our residents. Dr. Woodley is a practicing psychiatrist and a faculty member of the University of Cape Town, South Africa. She plans to visit our program again in the near future.
LGBTQI Symposium and Francis Smith Featured in Pulse: "Destination Excellence"
The Philadelphia LGBTQI Healthcare Symposium, organized by chief resident Francis Smith, DO, with the support of Drexel Department of Psychiatry and program leadership, was featured in "Destination Excellence" in the Fall 2016 edition of Pulse. "Destination Excellence" highlights people, programs and initiatives that support Drexel’s commitment to diversity. It is a regular feature of Pulse, which is published five times a year for students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of the College, highlighting innovations in research, clinical practice and education, key events, and accomplishments. Read the article about the Philadelphia LGBTQI Health Care Symposium.
Dr. Mark Messih published in American Journal of Psychiatry Residents’ Journal
Mark Messih, MD, published an article entitled “Mental Health in LGBT Refugee Populations” in the July 2016 American Journal of Psychiatry Residents’ Journal. The article examines the effects of traumatic, resettlement, acculturation and isolation stress on LGBT refugees. Different stages of the migration process are outlined and recommendations for clinical practice are also included. This work was also presented as a poster at the Philadelphia 2016 Colloquium of Scholars.
The 2nd Annual Cultural Symposium was held on June 9, 2016, at Friends Hospital in Philadelphia, Pa. This event was organized by our PGY-4 resident Mikal Hicks-Black with the ultimate goal of bringing awareness to the local community, fostering a sense of interconnectedness and challenging beliefs we all hold. As a program and community we were able to encourage dialogue in order to inspire change. Download the symposium agenda [PDF].
Various cultures (such as Middle Eastern, Asian, Russian and Southeast Asian) were represented throughout the symposium day by Drexel residents. Each resident discussed a specific cultural background as well as mental health topics relevant to the respective population. The community was also enriched by a lecture provided by Dr. Linda Jones-Hicks during the grand rounds time. This discussion was entitled "Sensitivity in the Clinical Setting: A Cultural Perspective."
Overall, the Cultural Symposium has received positive feedback regarding the dialogue and awareness generated at the event. In the upcoming 2016–2017 academic year we hope to facilitate it once again.
Philadelphia LGBTQI Healthcare Symposium
The Philadelphia LGBTQI Healthcare Symposium was held on June 1, 2016, at Friends Hospital in Philadelphia, Pa. The program was organized by chief resident Francis Smith, DO, along with the support of the Drexel Department of Psychiatry and program leadership. A reconstructive plastic surgeon, a psychiatrist with an interest in LGBTQI issues, an attorney who serves as the director of LGBTQI Affairs for the Philadelphia Mayor’s Office, and several prominent transgender leaders in the community were present for this day-long event. Download the symposium agenda [PDF].
Drs. David Prado and Donna Sudak Publish Book Chapter
David Prado, DO, and Donna Sudak, MD, published a chapter in the book Terapia Cognitivo-Conductual Psicofarmacologia. The chapter discusses the use of cognitive behavioral therapy and other psychosocial interventions in the treatment of schizophrenia.
Drs. Mangiardi and Thangaraj Participate in Clinical Trials Workshop
PGY-2 residents Mario Mangiardi, MD, and Swaminathan Thangaraj, DO, participated at the 15th Annual Workshop on Clinical Trials in Psychopharmacology. The meeting was held at the New York City Bar Association in New York on April 20 and 21, 2016. The workshop was sponsored by the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology (ASCP) and the Zucker Hillside Hospital.
2016 Colloquium of Scholars
Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's Colloquium of Scholars was held at the College of Medicine's Queen Lane Campus. The following Drexel residents submitted a total of nine posters:
- Lindsey Harvilla, DO
- Mario Mangiardi, MD
- Mark Messih, MD
- Swaminathan Thangaraj, DO
- Damira Vulas, MD
- Shahana Ayub, MD
- Dan Bender, DO
- Irina Chikvashvili, DO
- Joanna Beyer, DO
- Mitali Patnaik, MD
- Chuck Stanfa, DO
Farid Nader, MD, won the CBT award.
Mitali Patnaik, MD, won the Family Oriented Clinical Care Award (fourth place, poster competition)
Dan Bender, DO, Alex Grewal, MD, and Swaminathan Thangaraj, DO were the Drexel representatives for the Mind Games competition.
Drs. Mitali Patnaik and Wei Du Present at Addictions Symposium
Chief resident Mitali Patnaik, MD, and residency program director Wei Du, MD, represented the Drexel Adult Psychiatry Residency program at the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's 2nd Annual Addictions Symposium on March 12, 2016. Their presentation was entitled "Evidence Based Strategies for Involving Families in Treatment." Dr. Patnaik focused on the use of the naloxone autoinjectable Evzio. Their presentation was well-received in the psychiatry community and both presenters participated in the panel discussion.
Mikal Hicks, DO, Organizes Purse Drive for Women in Need
Four residents who assisted with the purse drive.
One of our esteemed residents, Mikal Hicks, DO, organized a purse drive for women facing homelessness and domestic violence. The proceeds will be going to a local community organization called Women in Transition, which benefits women in domestic violence situations seeking emergency services. Thank you, Dr. Hicks, for organizing this important event. Thanks also to the members of the Department of Psychiatry for their active contribution in helping out our community!
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Shahana Ayub Presents at Patient Safety Conference
Shahana Ayub, MD, represented Drexel at the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's 2015 Patient Safety and Risk Management Conference in November 2015. Shahana presented her poster, "Lithium Toxicity in the Bariatric Surgery Patient," which won third place.
Daniel Bender Receives Humanism and Excellence in Teaching Award
Daniel Bender, DO, has been selected by the Class of 2016 to receive the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Award for Humanism and Excellence in Teaching and will be inducted into the Gold Humanism Honor Society. The Arnold P. Gold Foundation’s Humanism and Excellence in Teaching Award is based on the awardee's demonstration of commitment to teaching and compassionate treatment of patients and families, students and colleagues. Award recipients are also acknowledged on the Arnold P. Gold Foundation and ACGME website.
Congratulations Dr. Bender for being a positive role model, emphasizing humanism in medicine when dealing with your patients and for fostering this quality in those you teach!
Drexel Presents at 2015 APA Annual Meeting
Drexel had three representatives who presented posters at this year's APA Annual Meeting, which was held in Toronto.
They presented the following posters:
Title: Metabolic Side Effects on the Rise: Metformin to Counteract Clozapine-Induced Adverse Reactions-A Case report
Resident Lead Author: Celia Varghese, MD
Resident Co-authors: Munjerina A Munmun, MD and Joanna Beyer DO
Faculty Advisor: Donald Kushon, MD
Title: How can we help when nothing works? A Case of Treatment Resistant Schizoaffective Disorder: Case Report and Treatment Review
Resident Lead Author: Munjerina A. Munmun
Resident Co-author: Mitali Patnaik MD and Celia Varghese MD
Title: Loxapine as an alternative to Clozapine in Treatment Resistant Schizophrenia
Resident Lead Author: Alex B.
Resident Co-author: Sikandar S. Shah, MD; Mitali Patnaik MD, Francis Smith DO and Munjerina A. Ahmed MD
Congratulations to Drexel on a job well done!
Residents Participate in Small Group Session for Medical Students
Drs. Alex B. and Alexander Grewal, two of our esteemed residents, conducted a small group session at which Drexel students had an opportunity to learn details about being a resident in each participating discipline. They provided invaluable insight to the next generation of doctors. The feedback provided by students stated that this was considered one of the genuine high points of the program. Thank you, Alex B. and Alex G., for mentoring our Drexel students!
2015 Colloquium of Scholars
March 7, 2015
Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's Colloquium of Scholars was held at the College of Medicine's Queen Lane Campus on March 7, 2015. Drexel residents submitted a total of eight posters, including one original research paper and seven case reports.
Shahana Ayub, MD, won second place in the Original Research competition for her poster: "Suicide Prevention – Public Health Dilemma." The co-authors were Wei Du, MD, and Mitali Patnaik, MD.
Mitali Patnaik, MD, (second place) and Celia Varghese, MD, (third Place) were runners up in the CBT case formulation write-up.
Charles Stanfa, DO, Mitali Patnaik, MD, and Joanna Beyer, MD, were the Drexel representative for Mind Games and placed third in the competition.
Residents to Participate in Research Supported by Helen S. Vernik Grant
The Department of Psychiatry and the Helen S. Vernik Trust Review Committee have announced the winners of the Helen S. Vernik Schizophrenia Pilot Research Project Grant Competition for 2014.
The overarching goal of the Helen S. Vernik Schizophrenia Pilot Research Project Grant is to foster research training in the graduate medical education program in psychiatry leading to the development of novel, innovative and collaborative research led by faculty who commit to working with and mentoring psychiatric residents.
This year's Helen S. Vernik Schizophrenia Pilot Research Project Grant Competition has drawn significant interest from the faculty across the Drexel Community and residents in the Department of Psychiatry. We received a number of competitive grant proposals that are designed to address several key areas of schizophrenia.
This year's winning proposals, investigators and participating residents are as follows:
- Principal investigator: Wen-Jun Gao, PhD, professor, Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy
Title: Augmenting inhibition to alleviate cognitive impairment in schizophrenia
Participating psychiatry residents: Lillian Reilly, DO, David Prado, DO, Celia Varghese, MD
- Principal investigator: Rita Shaughnessy, MD, PhD, associate professor, Department of Psychiatry
Co-investigator: Richard Josiassen, PhD, research professor, Department of Psychiatry
Title: The genomics of treatment-resistant psychotic symptoms
Participating psychiatry residents: Sikandar Shah, MD, two residents to be announced
- Principal investigator: Patricia Shewokis, PhD, professor, Nutrition Sciences Department, College of Nursing and Health Professions and School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
Co-investigator: Hasan Ayaz, PhD, assistant research professor, School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
Title: Assessment of cognition in schizophrenia using optical brain imaging
Participating psychiatry residents: Mitali Patnaik, MD, Chuck Stanfa, DO, and Joanna Beyer, DO
Congratulations to Drs. Gao, Shaughnessy, Shewokis, Josiassen and Ayaz, and to the residents chosen to work with them on these important projects. We look forward to their productive research experience!
Drs. John Gillean and Rose Ries Publish Well-Received Article
Congratulations to John Gillean, MD, former chief resident, and Rose Ries, MD, clinical associate director and consultation-liaison attending psychiatrist, for their well-received article: "Should the use of 'endorse' be endorsed in writing in psychiatry?" in the January 2015 edition of Current Psychiatry.
Residents Match with Highly Competitive Fellowships
Congratulations to Ajeetha Ravindradoss, MD, Rajniderpal Kaur, MD, and Munjerina Munmun, MD, for matching with highly competitive child and adolescent fellowship programs. They have matched in the following programs:
- Ajeetha Ravindradoss – Drexel University College of Medicine
- Rajniderpal Kaur – Baylor College of Medicine
- Munjerina Munmun – George Washington University Hospital/Children's National Hospital
We are proud of their achievements and wish them the best in their careers!
Shahana Ayub, MD, Presents at 2014 Philadelphia Psychiatric Society Patient Safety Conference
On November 15, Shahana Ayub, MD, represented Drexel at the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's 2014 Patient Safety and Risk Management Conference, which took place at the Crowne Plaza Valley Forge Hotel in King of Prussia, Pa. Shahana presented her poster "Suicide Prevention – Public Health Dilemma." The co-authors were Wei Du, MD, and Mitali Patnaik, MD. Congratulations to Shahana for a poster that was well received at the event!
Munjerina Munmun, MD, Presents at 2014 Institute on Psychiatric Services
The Institute on Psychiatric Services was held in San Francisco from October 30 through November 2. We were pleased to have adult psychiatry resident, Munjerina A. Munmun, MD, represent the program at this year's convention. She presented the poster, "When You Hit Rock Bottom, Ketamine to the Rescue in Treatment Refractory Depression in Elderly Population." Her poster was enthusiastically received during the convention and we congratulate Munjerina on her achievement!
Adult Psychiatry Faculty, Residents and Staff Participate in Suicide Prevention Walk
Wei Du, MD, Syed Sikandar Shah, MD, Mikal Hicks, DO, Ayesha Silman, MD, and Yiqing Miao, MS, participated in the Out of the Darkness Walk on October 5, 2014, to raise awareness about suicide, which is the tenth leading cause of death in the U.S., claiming the life of someone about every 15 minutes. We applaud their commitment to the cause and thank them for their efforts!
First Cultural Competence Symposium Held
We were honored to have the first ever Cultural Competence symposium organized by our very own Dimas Javier Tirado-Morales, MD, PGY-5 from the Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Residency program on September 18, 2014. The objective of the symposium was to bring about better awareness while dealing with the multicultural aspects of psychiatry. Dr. Tirado-Morales has been the recipient of the AACAP's Systems of Care Award earlier in the year. He gave a stirring presentation on the Hispanic culture, followed by Maria Pena-Ariet, MD, who spoke about her personal journey coming from Cuba to America. Motaz Alhomsi, MD, spoke on cultural issues related to the Middle East. We also had Rajniderpal Kaur, MD, walk us through the nuances of South Asian culture. Mikal Hicks, DO, gave us wonderful insight on the struggles of the African-American people, and Yiqing Miao, MS, and Wei Du, MD, educated us about the psychiatric aspects to consider in the Chinese population.
A special thanks to Sunil Verma, MD, and Karriem Salaam, MD, who took the time out of their clinical duties to help the residents. We are thankful to these sensitive and care-oriented residents for making us realize that mental health care truly needs a global humanitarian approach.
Resident Selected to Represent City of Philadelphia
Sikander Shah, MD, PGY-4, has been elected as the resident representative for the city of Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania Psychiatric Society meetings. This is indeed an honor as he was selected from among the five leading psychiatric residency programs in Philadelphia to represent the city.
Residents Receive Clinical Trials Workshop Fellowship Award
Congratulations to John A. Gillean, MD, and Branden Youngman, DO, for receiving the prestigious 2014 Clinical Trials Workshop Fellowship Award. They will be joining the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology's annual Workshop on Clinical Trials in Psychopharmacology in Florida in the upcoming year to further advance developments in research.
Resident Awarded the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Award for Humanism and Excellence in Teaching
John A. Gillean has been selected by the Class of 2015 to receive the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Award for Humanism and Excellence in Teaching. The award is based on a demonstration of commitment to teaching and compassionate treatment of patients and families, students and colleagues. Congratulations to John for being a positive role model, emphasizing humanism in medicine when dealing with patients, and fostering this quality in those he teaches.
Announcing New Chief Residents of 2014-2015
The College of Medicine Adult Psychiatry Residency program welcomes our new chiefs of 2014-2015: Mitali Patnaik, MD, Charles Stanfa, DO, and Syed Sikandar Shah, MD. It is an honor to have this remarkable group of residents selected to be our chiefs. Congratulations!
Dr. Ahuja Elected Vice President of AGLP
In May 2014, Amir Ahuja, MD, was elected the vice president of the Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists (AGLP), the only national organization of LGBT psychiatrists. Dr. Ahuja will be organizing educational presentations at national and international psychiatry meetings, overseeing the formation of an LGBT 101 DVD to aid in resident and medical student education, and aid the president and executive director in forming a vision for the organization going forward.
Drexel at the 2014 APA
Drexel made their presence known at this year's APA! Drexel residents submitted five posters, including two in a new research section, one workshop presentation and faculty Dr. Sudak was a key speaker and chair.
"Managing Neutropenia in Patients Treated with Clozaril"
Resident lead author: Celia Varghese
Resident coauthor: Nivedita Mathur, Pedro Bauza and Beeta Verma
Faculty advisors: Drs. Verma and Kushon
"Asexuality – The No Longer Invisible Orientation"
Resident lead author: Mitali Patnaik
Resident coauthors: Chuck Stanfa and Celia Varghese
Faculty Advisors: Drs. Kushon and Du
"When You Hit Rock Bottom, Ketamine to the Rescue in Treatment Refractory Depression in the Elderly Population"
Resident lead author: Munjerina Munmun
Resident coauthors: Mitali Patnaik and Celia Varghese
Faculty Advisors: Dr. Waldfogel
"Characteristics of Substance Use Patients in an Inner City Psychiatric Inpatient Unit: Chart Review
Resident Lead Author: John Gillean
Resident coauthors: Nivedita Mathur, Pedro Bauza, Olufemi Ogundeji, Elif Yilmaz
Faculty Advisors: Drs Kushon and Du
"Management of Resistant Catatonia"
Resident Lead Author: Beeta Verma
Resident Coauthors: Liudmilia Lobach, Syed Sikander Shah
Faculty Advisors: Dr. Verma
"Substance Use Among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People: An Overview of Epidemiology and Treatment"
Chairs: Residents Drs. Amir Ahuja and Alex B.
Speaker: Dr. Petros Levounis
"Training the 21st Century Psychiatrist, AVATAR Therapy and CBT: New Developments in Treatment of Medication Resistant Psychosis, Loneliness and Social Isolation: A CBT Approach for the Busy Psychiatrist and Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Suicide"
Speaker: Dr. Sudak
"CBT for Treatment Resistant Depression and High Yield CBT for Brief Sessions"
Chair: Dr. Sudak
AADPRT Annual Meeting
In March, Jack presented a poster on team based learning in psychiatry residency programs at the AADPRT Annual Meeting in Tucson, Arizona. The poster was well received at the meeting. He was invited as a resident panelist to participate in the Psychotherapy Milestones Training Workshop led by Dr. Sudak and other experts in the field of psychotherapy.
Colloquium of Scholars
March 8, 2014
Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's Colloquium of Scholars (COS) was held at the College of Medicine's Queen Lane Campus on March 8, 2014. Drexel residents submitted a total of five posters including three original research papers and two case reports.
Dr. Branden Youngman's (PGY4, chief resident) study on the relationship of early childhood trauma experience and psychiatric diagnosis in patients seeking bariatric evaluations at HUH won the third place prize in the category of original research.
Drs. Youngman and Ahuja (PGY4, chief resident) received the CBT award for their excellent CBT case write-ups. Dr. Youngman's award for the CBT Case Conceptualization was a case write-up of a patient with refractory OCD who had significant improvement in symptoms after treatment with CBT.
Dr. Jonathan Barton (PGY4 child fellow) won the psychodynamic award for his case write-up using psychodynamic formulation.
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Resident Receives Achievement Award
November 16, 2013
Amir Ahuja, chief resident for Drexel's Department of Psychiatry, received the Resident Achievement Award at the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's annual Benjamin Rush Ball on Saturday, November 16, 2013.
This award is given to a resident in one of the area training programs who has been nominated for outstanding activity as a resident. Amir has been an active resident representative for the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society for several years. During that time, he has also been actively involved in work to increase the visibility of LGBT individuals and to improve their mental healthcare and access to care. He is currently on the board of two LGBT organizations, has presented four times at the APA, and has published several articles. He has also developed an LGBT symposium that has been incorporated into the Department of Psychiatry's yearly didactic curriculum.
Drexel's Department of Psychiatry is very proud of Amir's accomplishments and looks forward to supporting him in the years to come.
Resident Selected as APA/Diversity Leadership Fellow
June 17, 2013
Dr. Dimas Tirado-Morales, a PGY-3 resident, has been selected by the Selection Committee for the APA Minority Fellowships as an APA/Diversity Leadership Fellow for 2013 – 2015.
Dr. Tirado-Morales, born and raised in Puerto Rico, studied industrial microbiology at University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez campus and then attended medical school at Universidad Central del Caribe School of Medicine. He has completed his PGY-3 training in adult psychiatry at DUCOM and is now in the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Program, also at DUCOM.
Golden Apple Awards
April 16, 2013
Dr. Syed Shah won the Golden Apple Award for his excellence in medical student teaching. All medical schools in the country considered the Golden Apple Award to be one of the top honors bestowed on medical school teachers.
Dr. Shah, a PGY-3 resident, graduated from Khyber Medical College, University of Peshawar, Pakistan. He worked as research associate at Thomas Jefferson University and Mountain Manor Treatment Center.
Drexel Psychiatry Stands Out at Colloquium of Scholars
March 2, 2013
Drexel psychiatry residents dominated the poster presentations – in both quantity and quality – at the Philadelphia Psychiatric Society's Colloquium of Scholars, held March 2, 2013. Drexel residents submitted a total of seven posters, ranging from case reports to literature review to original research.
Dr. Nivedita Mathur's poster won the first prize in the category of "Original Research"; Dr. Maria Aguilo-Seara's poster won the first prize in the category of "Case Report"; and Dr. Beeta Verma's poster won the third prize in the same category. The Drexel Jeopardy Team also had a strong performance in the Mind Games that took place at the end of the meeting.
- "Divalporex Sodium Induced Non-Hepatic Hyperammonemia in a Patient with Schizoaffective Disorder and Complex Partial Seizure Disorder"
Maria Aguilo-Seara, Danielle Fine, Amirali Sayadipour, Ben Boswell, and Donald Kushon
- "Rampage Killing: A Psychosocial Analysis"
Jonathan Barton, Hassan Majeed, and Paul Ambrosini
- "Clinical Applications of Behavioral Activation"
Hassan Majeed, Branden Youngman, Yiqing Miao, and Donna Sudak
- "Characteristics of Substance Use Patients in an Inner City Psychiatric Inpatient Unit – A Chart Review"
Nivedita Mathur, Pedro Bauza, Olufemi Ogundeji, Elif Yilmaz, Gaurav Mathur, Samson Gurmu, Wei Du, and Donald Kushon
- "Management of Benzodiazepine Dependency in Pregnancy"
Amirali Sayadipour, Elizabeth Johnson, Maria Aguilo-Seara, Roza Javeri, Beeta Verma, and Sunil Verma
- "Managing Ziprasidone-Induced Neutropenia – A Case Report"
Amirali Sayadipour, Humberto A. Caro, Maria Aguilo-Seara, Beeta Verma, Roza Javeri, and Sunil Verma
- "Tacrolimus and Psychosis in Post-Transplant Recipients"
Beeta Verma, Nivedita Mathur, Vishal Verma, Amirali Sayadipour, and Sunil Verma
There are 30 residents in the Drexel/Hahnemann adult psychiatry program.
2013 APA Annual Meeting in San Francisco
Dr. Amirali Saydipour was selected to participate in the APA Colloquium of Research at the 2013 APA Annual Meeting in San Francisco.
Dr. Sayadipour graduated from Azad University-Tehran Medical Branch, Iran. He was a very productive researcher in the field of spinal cord injury. Since joining the program, he has continued his passion in clinical research in the field of psychiatry.
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