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Archive for November 22, 2020

Remembering Paul Underwood

Last week marked the passing of one of my early teachers and mentors, Dr Paul Underwood.

Dr Underwood was a professor emeritus at Medical University of South Carolina, where I attended a residency from 2001 to 2005.

I was fortunate to get to train in a residency that was full of extraordinary people. Little did I know that not every department was like that. MUSC was an incredibly caring environment that looked after each resident like a member of family. Paul Underwood was a big part of that.

I can also say that without Dr Underwood, I would not be an endometriosis surgeon today. There is no question that he is the one that got me started on this path.

One day in my third year of residency Dr Underwood and I were doing an abdominal hysterectomy. We unexpectedly found stage IV endometriosis. While most attending would have been concerned about the complexity of the case, Dr Underwood was utterly unfazed, being a very experienced gynecologic oncologist. At the same time, he never took the case away from me. He always encouraged me to keep operating even when the case was just outside of my normal comfort zone, giving me a few pointers here and there. He was also one of those surgeons who might let a resident go a little too far and get into trouble, knowing he could fix it.

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Categories: General
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