Friday, April 29, 2011

Tornado Relief Effort: How You Can Help

Following Wednesday's devastating tornadoes, many people have asked what they can do to help the familes in need.

Click here to read a story in today's Press-Register about ways to support the effort.

Med School Café - Expert Advice for the Community

This week, Dr. Anne-Marie Kaulfers, assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine presented this month's Med School Café lecture, "Potential Cures for Type I Diabetes."

The next Med School Café lecture will be held on May 12, 2011, and will feature Dr. Jorge Herrera, professor of internal medicine at USA. His talk will discuss the modern management of liver disease and highlight new drug therapies that are scheduled to be released later this year.  If you are interested in attending, email for details.

COM Dean Honored With Alumni Achievement Award

Dr. Samuel Strada, dean of the University of South Alabama College of Medicine, was recently selected to receive the 2011 Alumni Achievement Award from the University of Missouri at Kansas City (UMKC).

Dr. Strada, along with his fellow alumni award recipients, were honored by UMKC at an awards luncheon in Kansas City, Mo., on April 27, 2011.

Each year, individuals are selected to receive alumni awards from each of UMKC’s academic units. The alumni awards process is highly competitive, with a nomination by the award committee and the endorsement of the nomination by the dean and by a campus-wide independent selection committee comprised of both former award recipients and top faculty.

UMKC’s Alumni Association highlighted the recipients’ stories and accomplishments at the luncheon as well as through speeches, presentations and classroom visits where they shared their experiences with students. One alumnus is chosen from each of the University’s 12 academic units.

Dr. Strada joined USA in 1983 as professor and chair of pharmacology. In 1994, he was named senior associate medical dean for the USA College of Medicine. During his tenure at USA, Dr. Strada has served as acting director of the graduate program in basic medical sciences, assistant dean for admissions, acting chair of psychiatry, and was faculty athletics representative from 1990-97.

In addition, Dr. Strada was instrumental in the creation of the Office of Technology Development, Office of Research Compliance and Assurance, and the USA Technology and Research Park. He currently serves as president of the South Alabama Medical Science Foundation.

Dr. Strada has national recognition for his research on cellular signaling mechanisms and has published more than 200 articles and abstracts. He has been active in the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics and the Council of Academic Societies of the Association of American Medical Colleges. He has served as president of the Association for Medical School Pharmacology Chairs as well as the Southeastern Pharmacology Society.

Dr. Strada received both his bachelor’s degree in pharmacy and master’s in pharmacology from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and his doctorate in pharmacology from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tenn. He conducted his post-doctoral training in neuropharmacology at the National Institutes of Mental Health in Washington, D.C. Prior to USA, he spent 11 years on the faculty as the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, where he rose to acting chair of pharmacology.

Dr. Rutecki Interviewed By Baltimore Sun

Nephrologist Dr. Gregory Rutecki, professor of internal medicine at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine, was interviewed for an article in the April 11 Baltimore Sun about using HIV-infected organs for transplants.

Click here to read the entire article.

USA Orthopaedic Rehabilitation Center Celebrates Anniversary at New Location

The University of South Alabama Orthopaedic Rehabilitation Center recently celebrated its 5-year anniversary at its new location at 2 Medical Park in West Mobile. In 2006, they moved from Knollwood Hospital to the USA Orthopaedic Surgery clinic, giving patients convenient access to both the surgeons and therapists.

Roy Daigle, associate dean of computer and information sciences at USA and a physical therapy patient, said the department has been very successful in creating a professional environment. “I like the atmosphere they have created there, and I would absolutely recommend them to anyone,” he said. “The atmosphere is friendly and inviting, and everyone knows you. They follow a team-oriented collaborative approach that I really like.”

Daigle started physical therapy to avoid surgery on his shoulder, but he soon learned that surgery was inevitable. After having rotator cuff surgery, Daigle started therapy with physical therapist Mark Leflore. He said all of the therapists at the Orthopaedic Rehabilitation Center have a strong connection with their patients. “I observed what was happening during therapy, and I saw that they all find ways to achieve the objectives without boring the patient,” he said. “You aren’t doing the same repetitive thing over and over again.”

“I have achieved so much, and I know that I will be where I want to be because of their tremendous help,” Daigle said.

Another patient, Kim King, began therapy following an injury that shattered the radius of her wrist in November. During her therapy sessions, she works with her occupational therapist, Susan Bishop, to build up strength and improve range of motion. “It’s coming along very well,” said King, a pharmacy technician at USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital. “It’s slow, but I see improvements every day.”

“Susan’s awesome,” King said. “She’s understanding, and I know that I can sit down and talk to her because she is a great listener. I’ve been with her for so long, and I couldn’t be happier.”

Although King has never attended occupational therapy sessions prior to this injury, she said the entire experience has been a positive one. “Right when you walk in the door, everyone smiles and asks about your day,” King said. “The new location is also very convenient because my physician and therapist are in the same building.”

Teresa Englestead, manager of credit and collection for the USA hospitals, has been seeing physical therapist Joan Friedlander on and off for three years because of issues with her neck, hip and knees.

“This department has always been very accommodating, especially now that therapy is located alongside the physicians,” she said.

Englestead said Friedlander fit her program to suit what was going on in her life. “Joanie is a great listener, and she has helped me so much,” Englestead said. “She has taught me what to do at home, and the therapy has made me feel much better. I feel like I have a great relationship with my therapist, and that’s what is most important.”

The USA Orthopaedic Rehabilitation Center provides outpatient physical and occupational therapy to treat a wide range of injuries and conditions. To learn more, call (251) 665-8201 or visit

Next Week's DSS - Dr. Joseph Brewer

The next Distinguished Scientist Seminar at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine will be presented by Dr. Joseph W. Brewer, associate professor of microbiology and immunology at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine.

The lecture will take place May 5, 2011, at 4 p.m. in the Medical Sciences Building auditorium.

The goal of Dr. Brewer’s research program is to delineate the molecular mechanisms that regulate homeostasis of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in mammalian cells.

Dr. Brewer received his Ph.D. in immunology from Duke University and carried out his postdoctoral studies at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

For more information on Dr. Brewer’s research, visit To learn more about the seminar, call Natalie Kent at (251) 461-1548.

RSVP Today Online - 2011 Oncology Outlook

The USA Mitchell Cancer Institute is hosting a CME Event, Oncology Outlook 2011, on May 6-7 at the Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Point Clear, Ala.

The University of South Alabama is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.The University of South Alabama designates this educational activity for a maximum of 5.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM.

To view the brochure and complete schedule of events, click here. To register, click here.