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MAY 30, 2014  

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In This Issue

Stony Brook Receives $3.5 Million to Establish Bahl Molecular Imaging Laboratory 

Bariatric and Metabolic Weight Loss Center Receives Full Approval as a Comprehensive Bariatric Facility 

Stony Brook Introduces Quiet Zones 

Stony Brook Children's Pediatric Hematologist/ Oncologist Puts Spotlight on Effects of Childhood Cancer 

Valve Conference Provides Forum on Latest Advances in Valve Disease 

Investigative Treatment for Frozen Shoulder Enters Advanced Trials 

School of Medicine Celebrates 40th Convocation 

Cancer Center Receives $50,000 from 20th Annual Walk for Beauty 

Stony Brook's New Physicians 

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Stretta Therapy for GERD Now Available
at Stony Brook

Juan Carlos Bucobo, MD
Juan Carlos Bucobo, MD

Stony Brook now offers a highly effective procedure to help sufferers of refractory gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

Known as Stretta Therapy, this minimally invasive outpatient procedure significantly reduces GERD symptoms without surgery. It helps the up to 30 percent of patients whose symptoms aren't sufficiently relieved by lifestyle changes and daily medication, such as antacids and proton-pump inhibitors, as well as patients who want to avoid the risks of long-term medication.

An endoscopically guided procedure done under moderate sedation, Stretta uses radiofrequency energy to remodel the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). This improves the function of the LES, the muscle that prevents regurgitation and acid reflux.

"With Stretta, we can offer patients a safe, effective middle ground between drug therapy and surgery," said Juan Carlos Bucobo, MD, Director, Endoscopy. "Most patients are able to stop or significantly reduce their reflux medications. And by alleviating their GERD symptoms, patients can enjoy an improved quality of life."

The procedure takes about an hour. Patients generally go home two hours later and resume normal activities the following day.

To learn more about Stretta Therapy or to schedule a consult for a patient, call (631) 444-5220.


Stony Brook Receives $3.5 Million to Establish
Bahl Molecular Imaging Laboratory

Lalit and Kavita Bahl
Lalit and Kavita Bahl

Kavita and Lalit Bahl of Stony Brook have pledged $3.5 million to establish the Kavita and Lalit Bahl Molecular Imaging Laboratory at Stony Brook Medicine. The high-tech laboratory will enable physicians and researchers to diagnose and monitor disease at the molecular level, as well as develop new targeted treatments for cancer, neurological disorders and other diseases. Plans for the laboratory include a cyclotron, a particle accelerator that is used in medicine to create radioactive tracer molecules to enhance diagnostic capabilities or treat specific diseases, particularly cancer.

The Bahl Molecular Imaging Laboratory will be located in Stony Brook's Medical and Research Translation (MART) building. The cyclotron will complement and further enhance Stony Brook's positron emission tomography/magnetic resonance imaging (PET/MRI) technology, which provides imaging results with a more precise and accurate assessment of disease.

"This gift will make a huge impact on our medical imaging program, clinical capabilities and new Department of Biomedical Informatics," said Kenneth Kaushansky, MD, Senior Vice President, Health Sciences, and Dean, School of Medicine. "Our use of cutting-edge molecular imaging in conjunction with computer technology to analyze biological data will be a catalyst toward increasing our abilities to understand disease processes, make earlier diagnoses and better treat patients."


Bariatric and Metabolic Weight Loss Center Receives Full Approval as a Comprehensive Bariatric Facility

Bariatric Team
Seated from left, Catherine Tuppo, PT, Bariatric Coordinator; Aurora Pryor, MD, Director, Bariatric Surgery; and Dana Telem, MD, Associate Director, Bariatric Surgery. Standing from left, Kaitlyn Roggemann, Database Manager; Christine Erickson, Administrative Assistant; Kartik Gohil, MD, Fellow; Kathryn Cottell, RD, Dietitian; Darragh Herlihy, NP; Maria Altieri, MD, Research Fellow; Genna Hymowitz, PhD, Psychologist; Renee Browning Goss, Pre-Certification Specialist; Jennifer Rosenstein, RN, Clinical Nurse Specialist, 9 North; and Donna Hoffman, RN, Nurse Manager, 9 North.

In recognition of its commitment to delivering high-quality care for patients in need of bariatric surgery, Stony Brook has been granted full accreditation as a comprehensive bariatric facility by the new Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP) of the American College of Surgeons and American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.

"Accreditation is an important way for patients to verify that a practice has access to all the key resources necessary for optimal care, and we are proud to be acknowledged here for our excellence at Stony Brook Medicine," said Aurora D. Pryor, MD, Director, Stony Brook Bariatric and Metabolic Weight Loss Center.


Stony Brook Introduces Quiet Zones

Voice lowered? Check. Mobile phones set to silent or vibrate? Check. Lights dimmed? Check. No, you're not about to watch a movie. You're entering a Quiet Zone.

Studies have shown that patients heal better in hospitals that provide calm and quiet environments. However, Stony Brook's Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey score for "quiet at night" indicated that there was room for improvement.

To support patients' well-being, Stony Brook has created a new program called Quiet Zones, which will be initiated in phases. Hospital-wide, Quiet Zone hours are from 8 pm to 7 am, and also take place during the day in certain units (times chosen by the unit's nurse manager) when hallway lights are dimmed.

When Quiet Zone hours are in effect, visitors and hospital personnel will be required to lower their voices and dial down the volume on televisions, radios and mobile phones. Patients who are sensitive to noise can also request earplugs.


Stony Brook Children's Pediatric Hematologist/ Oncologist Puts Spotlight on Effects of
Childhood Cancer

Laura Hogan, MD
Laura Hogan, MD

Laura Hogan, MD, Director, Pediatric Survivorship Program, has recently brought her expertise on late effects of childhood cancer to CureSearch for Children's Cancer, a national nonprofit dedicated to pediatric cancer research. There, she founded and remains chair of the CureSearch Survivorship Council. Its mission is to build awareness and support for the unique issues cancer survivors encounter as a result of their treatment for childhood cancer. The Council will also raise funds to support survivorship and late effects research and resources.

At Stony Brook Children's Hospital, Dr. Hogan runs the newly opened Pediatric Oncology Survivorship Program, which takes a multidisciplinary approach to screening and management of the multiple lifelong effects cancer survivors face following treatment.

This is a relatively new problem because unlike in years past when children with cancer faced a poor outcome, today 80 percent survive. However, two thirds of them will experience medical or psychosocial complications as a result of either the disease itself or the therapies used to treat it. These can include serious heart and lung issues, anxiety, depression, and problems with school, self-esteem and quality of life.

Dr. Hogan's team, which includes a nurse practitioner, social worker, nutritionist, psychologist, child life specialist and a representative from the school re-entry program, takes a proactive approach with children and families -- committed to prevention, ongoing surveillance and collaboration with the patient's healthcare providers.


Valve Conference Provides Forum on Latest Advances in Valve Disease

Physicians are invited to share their challenging clinical cases with valve disease experts at the upcoming Valve Conference on Wednesday, June 4, 6 to 7:30 pm, at the Stony Brook University Heart Institute Conference Room.

Conference participants include a multidisciplinary team of cardiovascular surgeons, interventional cardiologists and imaging experts. The discussion will cover diagnostic considerations and strategies, and treatment options. Physicians are welcome to bring any imaging data (echocardiography, cardiac magnetic resonance imaging, computed tomography or angiogram) of patients they would like to discuss.

Physicians who participate in the conference are eligible to earn 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit. A buffet dinner will be provided. For more information or to pre-register, call Karen Sanders, RN, at (631) 444-2010. On-site registration is also available. A conference call line will also be made available to physicians. Call (631) 444-2010 to request the conference call number.


Investigative Treatment for Frozen Shoulder Enters Advanced Trials

Frozen Shoulder Trial
Marie Badalamente, PhD (center), and Edward Wang, MD (right)

An investigational drug developed by Stony Brook Medicine researchers for adhesive capsulitis, a painful condition more commonly known as "frozen shoulder," has advanced to Phase 2b Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulated clinical trials. Twenty-five centers across the U.S., including Stony Brook Medicine, as well as 10 in Australia are conducting these trials. The Department of Orthopaedics at Stony Brook Medicine is seeking participants for the trial.

The research study involves injections of an enzyme called collagenase (collagenase clostridium histolyticum or CCH). The CCH drug used was developed by researchers in the Department of Orthopaedics at Stony Brook. Marie A. Badalamente, PhD, Professor, Department of Orthopaedics, and Edward Wang, MD, Associate Professor of Orthopaedics, Division of Shoulder, Elbow and Hand Surgery, were the first to develop the collagenase injection method for frozen shoulder and to patent the technology.

Eligibility criteria for the clinical trial include being age 18 or older, having frozen shoulder of only one shoulder with a duration of at least three months but no more than a year, and having no rotator cuff tears, arthritis or other shoulder problems. Interested individuals can call (631) 444-2215 for details.


School of Medicine Celebrates 40th Convocation

SOM Convocation
Stony Brook University School of Medicine Class of 2014 recites the Hippocratic Oath for the first time as physicians.

Stony Brook University School of Medicine has come a long way in 40 years: from its first graduating class of 18 in 1974 to 129 graduates this year, to its rise as an academic medical center on Long Island and in New York State and its evolution into a hub for collaborative medical research involving the University and other institutions. These themes resounded during the School's 40th convocation and anniversary celebration that took place at Stony Brook University's Staller Center on May 22.

Doctoral degrees were conferred on 129 graduates, and all of the graduates took the Hippocratic Oath for the first time as physicians. Members of the School's first graduating class of 1974 joined the ceremony.

The Class of 2014 is a diverse group set to begin residency training in July. More than one third of the graduates will train in primary care. Collectively, the graduates will launch their journeys into medicine at residencies in New York and 17 other states. They will train in 21 specialty programs, such as surgery and emergency medicine. Fifty-four percent will remain in New York State to practice.


Cancer Center Receives $50,000 from 20th Annual Walk for Beauty

Walk for Beauty
From left, Chiara Luberto, PhD, Research Associate Professor, Department of Physiology and Biophysics; Gloria Rocchio, President of the Ward Melville Heritage Organization; Yusuf A. Hannun, MD, Director, Stony Brook University Cancer Center, Vice Dean, Cancer Medicine, and Joel Kenny Professor of Medicine; and Anat Biegon, PhD, Senior Scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory and Professor of Neurology

On May 19, Gloria Rocchio, President of the Ward Melville Heritage Organization, presented a check for $50,000 to Yusuf A. Hannun, MD, Director, Stony Brook University Cancer Center, Vice Dean, Cancer Medicine, and Joel Kenny Professor of Medicine. The check represents proceeds raised from the 20th annual Walk for Beauty to benefit cancer research at Stony Brook University.

Chiara Luberto, PhD, Research Associate Professor, Department of Physiology and Biophysics, and Anat Biegon, PhD, Senior Scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory and Professor of Neurology, are the two cancer researchers whose projects will receive funds raised from the walk.

A collaboration between Stony Brook University and the Ward Melville Heritage Organization, the Walk for Beauty has raised more than $1.2 million for cancer research since its inception in 1994. The Walk for Beauty Fund also enables patients with cancer to purchase wigs, prostheses and other special products. The event is an all-volunteer initiative, and all proceeds stay in the community to benefit cancer research at Stony Brook.


Stony Brook Welcomes Its New Physicians

Introducing the physicians who recently joined Stony Brook's medical staff:

Department of Medicine

Grace Chung, MD, Internal Medicine-Cardiovascular Disease

Monika Datt, DO, Internal Medicine-Endocrine and Metabolism

Deirdre Cocks Eschler, MD, Internal Medicine-Endocrine and Metabolism

Carlos Fermo Jr., MD, Internal Medicine-Geriatrics

Abram Mozes, MD, Internal Medicine-Cardiac Electrophysiology

Kelly D. Steed, MD, Internal Medicine-Rheumatology

Department of Neurological Surgery

David A. Chesler, MD

Department of Neurology

Andrew M. Goldfine, MD

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Jacqueline Ammirata, MD

Angelica M. Hernandez, MD

Peter A. Judge, MD

Margarita Jurak, MD

Robert H. Kramer, DO

Denise E. Lester, MD

Maria Lockhart, MD

William Maiorino, MD

John A. Pallotta, MD

Department of Pediatrics

Barry L. Diener, MD, Pediatric Pulmonology

Stuart M. Holzer, MD, Pediatric Cardiology

Department of Psychiatry

Constantine Ioannou, MD

Jessica J. Richter, DO

Department of Radiology

Annapurneswara Rao Chimpiri, MBBS

Alexander Filatov, MD, Neuroradiology

Andrew Maleson, MD, Interventional Radiology

Luboslav Woroch, DO

Upcoming Events

WomenHeart of Central Suffolk

June 3, 6-7:30 pm, Hilton Garden Inn, Stony Brook University

Hosted by Stony Brook University Heart Institute, this meeting is open to women with heart disease who want to learn more about living a heart-healthy life. For more information, email Dawn Blatt.

Learn to Be Tobacco Free

June 3, 10, 17, 24, July 1, 8, and 29, 6 pm, Mastic Recreation Center, 15 Herkimer Street, Mastic, (631) 281-7655

A six-week, one-hour-per-week program, plus a reunion that offers techniques to stop smoking and provides tips for stress management, relaxation and behavior modification. Smoking cessation medication provided for a nominal fee. Led by a public health educator from the Suffolk County Department of Health.

Valve Conference

June 4, 6-7:30 pm, Stony Brook Heart Institute Conference Room, (631) 444-2010

Physicians are invited to discuss their complex or challenging clinical cases with other valve disease experts. The discussion will cover diagnostic considerations and strategies, and treatment options. Participants can earn 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM. The conference is free and includes a buffet dinner. For more information or to pre-register, call Karen Sanders, RN, at (631) 444-2010. On-site registration is also available.

National Cancer Survivors Day

June 8, 11 am-3 pm, Stony Brook University Cancer Center, 3 Edmund D. Pellegrino Road, Stony Brook, (631) 444-4000

Stony Brook's 10th annual National Cancer Survivors Day will feature inspirational speaker Scott Burton, a national headlining comedian and world champion juggler, who was one of the first to use wholesome, empowering humor as a way to tell his cancer story, "A Life in Balance." Also included will be the Parade of Survivors, games, musical entertainment and light refreshments. To attend this free event, register online or call (631) 444-4000.

Kids Health and Safety Expo at Long Island Ducks Baseball Game

June 12, 6:35 pm (gates open at 5:30 pm), Bethpage Ballpark (Long Island Ducks Stadium), Central Islip

Join Stony Brook Children's Hospital for an evening of family fun and baseball as the Long Island Ducks host the Bridgeport Bluefish. Learn from Stony Brook's healthcare experts and take part in health screenings, interactive exhibits, health demonstrations and other hands-on activities. Ducks chill packs will be handed out to the first 1,500 fans. Stony Brook employees can take advantage of a special ticket rate of $9 per person. Click here for a ticket order form.

Convoy of Hope Community Health Fair

June 14, 10 am to 2 pm, Robert Rowley Park, Corner of Patchogue Avenue and Hoffman Avenue, Bellport

Experts from Stony Brook Medicine will provide the latest information on vascular disease and dental health, along with screenings for blood pressure and cholesterol. This free health fair is open to all and will take place rain or shine.

Stand-Up for Kids: Comedy Show to Support Stony Brook Children's Hospital

June 18, 8 pm, Staller Center for the Arts, Stony Brook University

Get ready to laugh when Billy Gardell, star of the hit TV show Mike & Molly, brings his hilarious live stand-up show to Stony Brook. All proceeds from this event will be matched dollar for dollar and will benefit the Building Fund for the new Stony Brook Children's Hospital. Register online for tickets or call (631) 632-4466.

Varicose Vein Screening

June 21, 8 am to 2 pm, Stony Brook Vein Center, 24 Research Way, East Setauket, (631) 444-VEIN (8346)

Open to individuals between the ages of 18 to 80 who suffer from large varicose veins that are causing pain and/or swelling, this free screening includes a brief, noninvasive examination of the lower legs by board-certified physicians. Patients should wear or bring shorts to the screening. Registration is required and space is limited. To register, call (631) 444-VEIN (8346).

Vascular Screening

June 28, 8 am to 4 pm, Stony Brook University Heart Institute, (631) 638-2100

This free screening includes a carotid ultrasound, abdominal aortic ultrasound and ankle-brachial index to help detect vascular disease. For those who are 60 and older with one or more of the following risk factors: current or past smoker, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease or a family history of aortic aneurysm. Pre-registration and a qualifying interview are required by calling (631) 638-2100.

For More Information

Tell us what you'd like to see. Please send content for consideration to:

Therese Xeller 

Communications Manager

Stony Brook Medicine  

188 Belle Mead Road

East Setauket, NY 11733-9228

(631) 444-4883


Stony Brook University/SUNY is an affirmative action, equal opportunity educator and employer.

Produced by the Office of Communications.