Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine

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Resident Profiles

Thank you to our wonderful three Chief Residents: here are their short bios

Chrystina Jeter MD
Chrystina was born and raised in Bakersfield, CA and is the youngest of five children. After finishing high school, she left Bakersfield to attend the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She graduated with a major in Biology and a minor in Chemistry. After college, Chrystina spent 3 years working in HIV research at UCLA and healthcare IT at Kaiser Permanente. She attended medical school at UCLA and then moved north to Stanford for residency. She recently matched into the Pain Medicine fellowship at Stanford and is thrilled for the opportunity to spend another year in the bay area.
In her free time, she enjoys relaxing with her husband, Rich, and dog, Kona. She also enjoys traveling, reading, and watching movies.

Jason Johns MD
Jason was born and raised in the Mesa, Arizona area. He attended Arizona State University graduating with a degree in Biology while working in consumer banking at Chase Bank. After graduating he and his wife Annie moved to Chicago, Illinois so he could attend Loyola Medical School while Annie worked as a dental hygienist. Enjoying his time in the snow he subsequently stayed in the Chicago area doing a prelim medicine internship at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, Illinois. During his time in Chicago his first son was born, Bennett (5). After enough cold weather he chose to return to the west coast to do his anesthesia residency at Stanford. While here, his second child Cate (2) was born. Jason has an avid interest in regional anesthesia and will stay at Stanford to complete a regional anesthesia fellowship. When not at the hospital Jason can typically be found being a father and husband/enjoying family time. Jason does always enjoy sneaking in some time to golf, hike, fish, or experience new restaurants.

Christopher Press MD
Chris was born in southern California but lived in many places around the U.S. because of his father’s job. He did his undergraduate work at Emory University where he majored in Biology and Economics while competing at a National level as an NCAA swimmer. Upon graduation Chris took a couple years off to work at LABioMed as a research fellow. He then headed to New Orleans, LA for medical school at Tulane where he continued to stay active in all water sports. Chris was ecstatic to return to the West Coast for residency. He plans to stay at Stanford for a year of fellowship training in cardiac anesthesia and hopes to pursue a career in Northern California.

Resident refection essay for the Medical Education and Simulation elective

Dr. Tammy Wang, CA-3, kindly agreed to share her reflections after completing the Medical Education and Simulation Elective in the Stanford Department of Anesthesiology.

My Medical Education and Simulation elective has been an excellent experience. It has reinvigorated me and given me some time to reflect on possible future career paths and choices. This month has reminded me of how much I truly enjoy not just teaching itself, but also thinking about how best to educate medical students and residents. I have thought not just about effective teaching, but also about how students learn, and how to study that. We need to have more educators who do not just impart knowledge, but also assess need and evaluate the efficacy of the curriculum design.

I have also enjoyed having some time to focus on performing a task well. ImPRINT has been a pleasure to coordinate this academic year. However, with my own academic studies and clinical duties taking priority, it has been a challenge to devote the amount of time to the course that it deserved. This month, I was able to put together a robust curriculum for May that I feel proud of. In addition, I have been able to complete a separate scholarly project for submission to MedEd Portal, based on the ImPRINT curriculum.

Our residency exposes us to a great deal of simulation as a learner. It has been interesting and enlightening to further experience simulation as a novice instructor. Through reading articles, observing expert instructors, and self-practice, I have improved my own abilities in debriefing. I have also increased my own medical knowledge and skills in Crisis Resource Management (CRM) by being allowed to attend multiple ACRM sessions. For me, the repetition is really helpful in reinforcing the information.

I have been told repeatedly that we are trained well as Stanford Anesthesia Residents. I have been a little skeptical about that, since I do not feel there is an easy way to gauge that. This is the only anesthesia residency I have ever been through! However, this month, I helped instruct the Internal Medicine resident code team training at the VA, and it does seem clear that our crisis resource management education is robust compared to other specialties. In addition, the instructors at the PALS course this month repeatedly expressed their pleasure at our facile use of CRM principles compared to their typical learners. It has been gratifying to realize that, as I near the end of my training, I do indeed have significant knowledge and skill that I might be able to impart to others in the future.

It has been interesting to learn a little bit about the curriculum available for an advanced degree in medical education as well. The reading for this course has given me a little exposure to the field, and I am definitely interested in learning more.

The primary challenge during the rotation has been time management. It is difficult to simultaneously (1) be an active participant in the plethora of simulation activities Stanford and the VA has to offer, (2) produce meaningful scholarly work, (3) complete the required readings and lectures, and (4) honor the clinical commitment for the elective. There are not enough hours in the month! Certainly any resident choosing this elective must have an on-going project that they can use this month to solidify or complete. It would be a challenge to expect to complete academic work that was started during the same month.

Overall, this has been an excellent elective, and I am grateful for the opportunity to be the inaugural resident. The mentorship during this rotation has been especially wonderful. I am grateful to Dr. Udani for the limitless time and energy he has put into this course. In addition, Drs. Harrison, Howard, and Gaba have been generous mentors and role models. I would highly recommend it to any resident with an interest in medical education and/or simulation.

Bios for Chief Residents for 2013-2104

Jorge Caballero, M.D.
Jorge was born in the Mexican colonial city of Morelia and grew up in sunny southern California before moving to the Bay Area. He met his college sweetheart, LeeAnn, as a senior at Stanford and they married while he was a student at the Stanford School of Medicine. Since he’ll be sticking around next year as a FARM Fellow, he’s earned the label of being a “Stanford Lifer” – and he’s all too willing share his knowledge of all the great opportunities Stanford has to offer. As a FARM Scholar, Jorge’s scholarly pursuits are driven by a desire to merge his interest in computing with his passion for medicine. His research focuses on improving anesthesiology and perioperative care by leveraging clinical data to catalyze translational research. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with friends, attending Stanford Football games, traveling, and day tripping to wine country.

Marie McHenry, M.D.
Marie grew up on the East Coast in Annapolis, Maryland. She went to Johns Hopkins University, earning a degree in biomedical and electrical engineering. The first of many adventures with her husband Rob was to head west to San Diego California, where he was stationed on a Navy Nuclear Submarine. Although trained as an engineer, she quickly realized that she was a little too social for that field and followed an opportunity into the financial services industry where she worked with retirement investment funds. After eight years in finance, in what was perhaps an early midlife crisis, she pursued her dream of medical school at Georgetown University School of Medicine. A little older and hopefully wiser, anesthesia was a clear choice and a perfect fit. After an internship at INOVA Fairfax in Northern Virginia and with fond memories of the west coast, she came to Stanford for anesthesia residency where she is currently a chief resident. Having chosen to pursue fellowship training in cardiac anesthesia, Marie will be heading to The Texas Heart Institute in July 2014. Who knows where the adventure will take her after fellowship, but she is hoping to come back to the San Francisco Bay Area. When not at the hospital, she can be found enjoying all that the Bay Area has to offer, including great wind, great weather, and great wine!

Matthew Wagaman, M.D.
Matt was born just down Hwy 101 in San Jose CA where his Dad came in the late 70’s trying to pitch the idea of an electronic medical record for dental offices. Given the size and expense of the personal computer at the time not many were interested and so the Wagaman’s moved to be near family in Utah which is where Matt grew up. After graduating from Brigham Young University with a B.S. in Exercise Physiology he spent 1 yr. working as a dialysis technician for DaVita Dialysis. During this time he had his first child, Elizabeth (Ellie, 7). He completed his medical degree at the University of Michigan and became an avid Michigan sports fan. Matt completed a Transitional Year Internship at St. John’s Hospital in Detroit. It was during this time in Michigan that Noah (5) and Rowena (Row, 2) were born. Although very fond of the mid-west, Matt and his family were searching for a warmer location to complete residency training and were immediately captivated by the idea of coming to Stanford. He feels privileged to be part of this great program and to represent his co-residents as a Chief Resident. Matt will be joining a private practice in Colorado Springs, CO beginning in July 2014. When he is not fulfilling his role as a parent and husband Matt enjoys watching and playing most sports, music, snow skiing, golf, and Thai food.

Three Stanford Anesthesia Chief Residents


Crucial to any residency is the Chief Resident. At Stanford we have 3 Chief Residents every year elected by housestaff and faculty. As Program Director it is a real treat to interact with these young leaders.

This year the three Chief Residents (with a short bio) are: Drs. Javier Lorenzo, Laura Downey, and Jay Jay Desai.

Arjun "JJ" Desai, MD
JJ was born and raised in Southern California. Following in two generations of tradition, JJ attended the University of Oklahoma where he served as university president and held several leadership positions. During college, JJ worked on Capitol Hill as an intern for Congressman Christopher Cox and the House Policy Committee where he helped to shape emerging healthcare legislation. After college, JJ lived in Singapore as a delegate of the State Department and Rotarian Ambassadorial Scholar of Goodwill. In Singapore, he taught in the graduate school of International Health Economics at the National University of Singapore. Additionally, he traveled to over 11 countries to speak with village coalitions and local health ministries to develop sustainable vaccination programs and preventative health clinics. JJ attended the University of Miami school of medicine. In Miami, JJ helped to develop an international non-profit health system in Gujarat, India. Over 40 medical students from the University of Miami traveled to India with JJ to work and volunteer their services. Combined with an interest in clinical anesthesia, JJ continues here at Stanford with a research focus in operating room management and Anesthesia business development. Fun fact - while in Miami, JJ met his best friend and future wife - who is now also an Anesthesia resident at Stanford!

Laura Downey MD
I was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia. I graduated from Duke University with a degree in Marine Biology in 2003. I then moved to California and spent a year working as a research assistant in an immunology lab here at Stanford. I decided to move back east to attend Duke for my medical degree. After graduation, I felt the pull back to the west coast and moved to Seattle, WA for my intern year as an internal medicine resident at University of Washington. Subsequently, I moved to Stanford for my three years of anesthesia residency. I am curently one of the chief residents and have really enjoyed getting to know our residents and the applicants this year. I will be starting a pediatric anesthesia fellowship at Children's Hospital of Boston next fall. Outside of the hospital, I enjoy many of the activities that they bay area has to offer, including SCUBA diving, traveling, hiking, rock climbing, and taking a trip to the wine country with friends.

Javier Lorenzo MD
Javier was born and raised in Cuba, and immigrated to the United States at the age of eleven. He attended Carnegie Mellon University where he graduated with a degree in Biological Sciences and Biomedical Engineering. Before attending medical school in Stanford University, he lived in Bethesda (MD) where he worked at the National Institutes of Health doing research elucidating molecular pathways of insulin resistance. He was also involved in public science policy and was a guest writer for the NIH Catalyst. Javier decided to stay in the Bay Area for his residency because he enjoys the "magical universe" of the region. He is an avid hiker and a self proclaimed 'foodie'. During his free time is catching up with his hobby as a cinema enthusiast, weightlifting, or discovering eateries in the area. He will soon be starting his fellowship in Critical Care Medicine here in Stanford.

Thank you Chiefs for a job very well done,
Thank you,
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A short interview with Stanford anesthesia resident Joyce Hairston

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Applicants know that residents in the program provide the best information about any residency. So Joyce Hairston, one of our CA2 residents, who came to Palo Alto from Harvard Medical School after having grown up in Maryland was nice enough to answer some questions!

Joyce, Please tell us what a typical day looks like for a Stanford anesthesia resident.

My typical work day requires getting up early, heading to Stanford to sneak a snack from the breakroom, stop by the pharmacy and get meds for my patients, set up my assigned room and go meet my first patient of the day and see how they're doing -- all the time making sure I troubleshoot any potential upcoming issues, like a difficult airway. (Then repeat setting up room and meeting patients x3-4) and then I try to figure out what patients are on the agenda for tomorrow. After work I can often get in a 45 min run. On an early day I can go for a bike ride. I often meet my boyfriend for dinner and/or reading time. Then I chat with my roommate about the latest crazy show on TV (she keeps me updated on Grey's Anatomy and other such shows); then I hit the hay.

What is your favorite part about residency?

Taking really good care of a challenging patient and making it look smooth– staying a step ahead of the surgeons, potential post-operative concerns, and keeping the patients as close to the comfort zone as possible–while making it all look easy.

What is your least favorite part about residency?

Not having a 9-5 job where it's easy to take a day off to attend to whatever important thing comes up or a job with flexibility such that you can come in at 10am and leave at 8pm if you happen to need some morning time for an appointment or to carpool.

What do you do for fun?

Fun includes going out dancing on the weekends, going running or cycling, traveling to and exploring a new part of the bay area, meeting up with and spending time with old friends in the area.

Why did you decide to come to Stanford for Anesthesia Residency?

Stanford was an easy decision for me because it offers so many things under one roof: tremendous case diversity to broaden our experiences in anesthesia and also offers challenging cases that deepen your understanding in a particular field--all the while being taught and guided by an accomplished faculty member. There are trips to other countries to do mission work which is both grueling and yet so very worthwhile and rewarding; there are tons of research labs to contribute to and advance the frontiers of science; and there are many expert faculty mentors and GME advisors to turn to who can help steer your career in the right direction. There are fellowships here which offer the opportunity to interact with other trainees a level above us as residents and that provides both insight and advice from people who have just gone through the process of securing an outstanding fellowship.

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