News Archive 2017

November 20, 2017
By Department of Medicine

Stony Brook Medicine Internal Medicine Residents had a clean sweep in the Resident Research Competition at the New York ACP Resident and Student Forum held on October 28, 2017, winner 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in the research category! As 1st place winner, Kevin Zarrabi receives support from NYACP to present his research at the national ACP meeting in New Orleans in 2018.

1st place: Kevin Zarrabi, “Assessing Clinical Outcomes in Colorectal Cancer with Assay for Invasive Circulating Tumor Cells”. Mentor: Dr. Yue Zhang

2nd place: Gregg Cantor: Predictors of Non-calcified Plaque Among Patients With Obstructive Coronary Artery Disease on Coronary Computed Tomography Angiography. Mentor: Dr. Getu Teressa

3rd place: Jessica Harris and Qin Rao. “Reducing Inflammatory Bowel Disease Readmissions: A Retrospective Review of Factors Contributing to IBD Readmissions at a Single University Hospital Over a Period of 5 years”. Mentors: Ramona Rajapakse and Farah Monzur.


November 17, 2017
By Department of Medicine


2017 Mid-Atlantic Society of General Internal Medicine Meeting in Newark, DE

  • Patricia Ng, MD and Rachel Wong, MD, MPH- Show Me the Money! Preliminary Results from a tailored financial wellness program for Internal Medicine Residents. (Oral Abstract Winner for Education Innovations)
  • Kevin Zarrabi, MD; Kelly Cummings, MD; Tejas Shah, MD; Nirvani Goolsaran, MD- Understanding the Barriers to Error Reporting: A Needs Assessment (Poster Winner for Education Innovations)
  • Vadim Divilov, MD; Abhinav Rohatgi, MD; Bonnie Kiner-Strachan, MD- A Rare Case of Extramedullary Leukemic Infiltration of Bilateral Breasts as a First Sign of Relapse in AML
  • Ruth Abeles, MD; Patricia Ng, MD; Muataz Yaziji, MD; Nand Wadhwa, MD- Mixed Cryoglobulinemia with Monoclonal IgM Kappa and IgG Kappa in the setting of Primary Sjogren Syndrome
  • Aaron Levit, DO and Patricia Ng, MD – Rothia dentocariosa Endocarditis: A Rare Case of Fatal Disease
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Dr. Kevin Zarrabi

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Dr. Aaron Levit

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Dr. Ruth Abeles

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Dr. Vadim Divilov

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Left to right: Drs. Zarrabi, Abeles, Divilov, Levit, Ng (Attending)

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Dr. Patricia Ng, Primary Care Program Director

November 16, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Aaron Levit
Dr. Aaron Levit, Internal Medicine Resident, has been appointed to the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) Medical Student and Advisory Panel. The USMLE Medical Student and Resident Advisory Panel is composed of medical students and residents from across the U.S. and internationally and is charged to assist USMLE staff in working through operational issues directly impacting the examinee experience of the exam and serve as a voice and resource to inform substantive policy questions from or before official USMLE committees. Topics the panel may be asked to address or weigh in on include strategic enhancements to the USMLE, communication strategies to examinees, performance feedback to examinees, the testing day experience of examinees, and changes in USMLE policy.

Congratulations to Dr. Levit on this achievement!

October 27, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Audun Lier, PGY2, was awarded by competitive application the ID Week Mentorship Program Travel Stipend. The program provided one-on-one mentoring and opportunities to discuss career opportunities including global health. Dr. Lier presented his research on “Barriers to successful linkage to care among HCV positive individuals” at the recent IDSA meeting. Dr. Lier’s faculty mentor is Dr. Luis Marcos from the Division of Infectious Diseases.


September 27, 2017
By Department of Medicine


We are proud to announce that we had a record number of posters accepted to NYACP. The acceptance rate for Stony Brook Medicine was 67% with an overall acceptance rate of 46%. Really proud of everyone who submitted posters!
The following individuals have posters accepted:

Abstract Category Abstract Title Author
Resident/Fellow Clinical Vignette Gangrenous Cholecystitis Secondary to Extension of Celiac Artery Dissection into Hepatic Artery Jessica Harris
Resident/Fellow Clinical Vignette Nafcillin-Induced Liver Failure: A Rare Report and Review of the Literature Talal Seoud
Resident/Fellow Clinical Vignette Dermatomyositis without the Myositis: Acute Hypoxic Respiratory Failure Diagnosed as Anti-MDA5 Clinically Amyopathic Dermatomyositis Layla Sankari
Resident/Fellow Clinical Vignette Methylene Blue Dye Used for Visual Confirmation of an Enterocutaneous Fistula: A Case Report and Review of the Literature Talal Seoud
Resident/Fellow Research Assessing Clinical Outcomes in Colorectal Cancer with Assay for Invasive Circulating Tumor Cells Kevin Zarrabi
Resident/Fellow Research Reducing Inflammatory Bowel Disease Readmissions: A Retrospective Review of Factors Contributing to IBD Readmissions at a Single University Hospital Over a Period of 5 years Jessica Harris

June 28, 2017
By Department of Medicine


The Department of Medicine Celebratory Grand Rounds was held on June 28, 2017. The 2017 recipients of Faculty Awards Program are as follows:

From left to right: Kaveh Sedigh, Teacher Educator Award (Medical Student category); Bettina Fries, Basic Science Research Award; Hal Skopicki, Clinical Research Award; Michelle Bloom, Mentoring Award; Alpa Desai, Teacher Educator Award (Fellow category); David Goodrich, Master Clinician Award; Susan Lee, Outstanding Service Award; Stephanie Jones, Teacher Educator Award (Resident category); Vincent Yang, Simons Chair of Medicine

June 6, 2017
By Department of Medicine


The 14th Annual Peter Cohn, MD, Lecture took place on May 24, 2017. This year’s speaker was Dr. William Lawson, Professor of Medicine and Vice Chair of Quality, Compliance and Patient Safety. The title of the talk was “Pipe Dreams of a Cardiologist”. Dr. Ken Kaushansky gave introductory remarks on both the Lectureship and the speaker. A commemorative plaque was presented to Dr. Lawson by Drs. Cohen and Javed Butler, Professor and Chief of Cardiology Division, and Co-Director of Stony Brook Heart Institute.


May 30, 2017
By Department of Medicine


On May 3, 2017, three Stony Brook Internal Medicine and 14 medical students volunteered for “Doctors Back to School” Day, a community outreach event organized by Dr. Cordia Beverly and Ms. Yvonne Spreckles. Primary Care Internal Medicine Residents, Drs. Olga Kaplun, Sean Hsu and Zachary Fleischner, spoke to nearly 500 students from Brentwood and Longwood High Schools to inspire them to pursue careers in medicine. The event was part of the American Medical Association’s nationwide efforts to increase underrepresented minority physicians in training and eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities.

Dr. Sean Hsu (3rd from the right)

Dr. Olga Kaplun teaching a Longwood High School student about auscultation

Dr. Olga Kaplun (2nd from the right)

May 23, 2017
By Department of Medicine


After 48 years of illustrious career as a cardiologist, 36 of which devoted to Stony Brook, Dr. Peter F. Cohn retired in January of this year as Professor of Medicine. A dinner was held in his honor on May 19, 2017, at the Melville Marriott Hotel and was attended by Peter’s family, friends, current and past Stony Brook faculty, as well as former fellows trained under him, including Professors Marvin Konstam of Tuft University and Marc Pfeffer of the Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston. Peter was the inaugural Chief of Cardiology at Stony Brook in 1981 when he moved from the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital of Harvard Medical School. He is known internationally for his pioneering work on silent myocardial ischemia. Under his leadership, Stony Brook Cardiology program grew tremendously both in terms of size as well as the services provided. A few years ago, friends of Peter also donated an endowment to initiate an annual Peter Cohn Distinguished Lectureship series. This year’s lecture will be delivered by Dr. William Lawson, Professor of Cardiology and Vice Chair of Medicine for Quality, titled “Pipe Dreams of Cardiologists”, on Wednesday May 24th.

From left to right: Dr. V. Yang; Dr. P. Cohn; Ms. Cohn; and Dr. J. Butler

April 11, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Sahar AhmadDr. Nirvani GoolsarranDr. Kaveh Sadigh Drs. Sahar Ahmad, Nirvani Goolsarran, and Kaveh Sadigh have been selected to become Members of the Miriam and David Donoho Academy of Clinical & Educational Scholars (ACES). Their selections reflect their contributions to teaching, mentoring, curriculum development, leadership and educational scholarship in medical education. As Members of this Academy they will become part of an elite group of leaders in medical education and medical education scholarship who will work with individuals and programs across all areas of the School of Medicine to identify, analyze, and solve challenges in medical education and clinical scholarship. The Academy aims to provide them with individualized mentorship to foster their educational and clinical scholarship for continuous career development, and to recognize and reward those who display dedication to and excellence in education.

Their initial terms in the Academy will be for three years, provided them continue to demonstrate exemplary service to the educational missions of ACES and of the School of Medicine. Their participation in and service to ACES will be reviewed annually by the ACES Director and the ACES Evaluation Committee.

Let's congratulate Drs. Sahar Ahmad, Nirvani Goolsarran, and Kaveh Sadigh on being selected as a Member of ACES.

More about the Miriam and David Donoho Academy of Clinical & Educational Scholars (ACES) can be found HERE.

April 6, 2017
By Undergraduate Research & Creative Activities (URECA)


Evelyn Kandov
Evelyn Kandov is on track to graduate in May with an honors degree in Biology — and in just 3 years! She is a member of the Women in Science & Engineering (WISE) program, and has been active in research at Stony Brook since she was a high school participant in the Garcia Research Scholars program. In her freshman year at SB, Evelyn began doing research in the Physiology & Biophysics Department, and participated in the 2015 PSEG-sponsored Explorations in STEM program. During 2015-16, she worked primarily with Dr. Richard Lin and Dr. Lisa Ballou on a project involving protein interactions in pancreatic tumor cells. In January 2016, Evelyn joined the laboratory of Dr. Berhane Ghebrehiwet (Medicine) and received a URECA award in Summer 2016 to support her work on “The dual roles of membrane and soluble forms of gC1qR and C1q in the breast cancer microenvironment." Evelyn will be presenting a poster at the The American Association of Immunologists in Washington D.C, next month. She will also be presenting on-campus at the annual URECA undergraduate research symposium on April 26th. This summer, Evelyn will be interning at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and in the fall will start a two-year post-baccalaureate program at the NIH.

Please click HERE for the full interview/feature on URECA site.

April 4, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Rachel Wong and her team won National ACP Champion Awards for their wonderful accomplishments in the Quality Improvements arena. We are very proud of their accomplishments:

Several residents and faculty members are named as ACP QI Champions this year:
2017 - 18 ACP QI Champions
Atrial Fibrillation - Bibi Zainul MD (faculty), Alley Fernan, RN (nursing)
Diabetes - Wendy Podany MD (resident)
Chronic Pain - Astha Muttreja MD (resident), Stephanie Jones MD (faculty), Alley Fernan RN (nursing), Rachel Wong MD (faculty)

From left to right: Rachel Wong, MD (faculty), Bibi Zainul, MD (faculty), Wendy Podany, MD (PGY2),
Astha Muttreja, MD (PGY2), Alley Fernan, RN

The Stony Brook QI Pain Champion team also won the 2017 John Palmiero ACP QI Team Champion Award for excellence in QI with their work on Chronic Pain Management. This is a remarkable achievement. The winning team members are:
William Carroll MD (resident), Alley Fernan RN (nurse), Rachel Wong MD (faculty)

From left to right on the left photo: Salem Wubu from the ACP accepting, Rachel Wong, MD and Alley Fernan, RN
On the right photo: Will Carroll, MD (PGY3) with the award

Dr. Rachel Wong’s efforts in Quality Improvement have led to national recognition of the excellent work she is leading with her team at Stony Brook. Congratulations to Dr. Wong and her colleagues!

March 9, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Sahar Ahmad
It is a pleasure to announce that Dr. Sahar Ahamd has been selected for the membership in the Medical Honor Society, Alpha Omega Alpha. This selection recognizes her important contribution to medical students' education and is a testament of their high regard for her. She now joins a most select group of physicians, scientists, and educators whose performance places them in the highest category of excellence. Let's join the students and other faculty members in offering the most sincere congratulations upon her selection for this honor.

February 27, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Susan Lane
Dr. Vincent Yang, Chair of Medicine, announced that Dr. Susan Lane has been elected as a Councilor to the Association of Program Directors in Internal Medicine (APDIM) for a three-year term, beginning July of this year. This is a remarkable achievement given the significant leadership role that the Councilor plays in guiding the development of policies and strategies of the society. Dr. Lane has been Chair of the Health Policy Committee of the Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine (AAIM), the parent organization to which APDIM belongs, and will be moderating the Opening Plenary at the annual AAIM conference at Baltimore in March. She certainly makes us at Stony Brook proud. Let's congratulate Dr. Lane for her exemplary contributions and accomplishments.

February 27, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Smadar Kort
The American College of Cardiology (ACC) is planning to produce a new version of EchoSAP – the popular self-assessment program on echocardiography – for release in 2018, and Dr. Smadar Kort has been selected to be the editor-in-chief for the next version of EchoSAP. EchoSAP helps its users prepare for the initial or recertification exam in echocardiography, stay abreast of new advances in the field, teach others and earn CME credit. We are excited to see Dr. Kort to make EchoSAP 8 even better than its predecessors! Congratulations!

February 27, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Jonathan Tolentino
Dr. Russ Kolarik, Chair of MPPDA Nominating Committee, announced that Dr. Jonathan Tolentino had been elected to be Member Representative of Medicine-Pediatrics Program Directors Association (MPPDA). Dr. Tolentino will serve a two-year term which begins July 1, 2017. Congratulations on this remarkable achievement!

January 23, 2017
By Department of Medicine


Dr. Michelle Bloom
Dr. Vincent Yang, Chair of Medicine, announced that at its most recent meeting, the School of Medicine’s Appointment, Promotion and Tenure (APT) Committee, had recommended the promotion of Dr. Michelle Bloom in the Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, to Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, pending on the approval of the President. Please join us in congratulating Dr. Michelle Bloom on the well-deserved and outstanding accomplishment.