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The LSU Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery was founded in 1931, as one of the charter surgical departments in the newly created Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans. Thus, we have reached our 80th year of operation. Although the geographics of the Department have changed following hurricane Katrina, our philosophies and commitment to patient care and education have remained the same.
The Department of Otolaryngology has continued to move forward and flourish despite obstacles. Our residents continue to be among the most sought after applicants and mature into compassionate and competent physicians of whom we can be proud. Since 1994, graduates of the LSU Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery residency program have had 100% success rate in board certification by the American Board of Otolaryngology. In the last 20 years, the department has produced about a dozen graduates who went on to pursue careers in academic otolaryngology, and four of these have risen to the rank of department chair or higher. We have also been consistently successful in matching our graduates to exceptional fellowships at institutions such as M.D. Anderson, Sloan-Kettering, University of California at San Francisco, University of Pittsburgh, University of North Carolina, Lahey Clinic, and others.
In 2005, we underwent a major re-organization of our program. We managed to continue our critical objectives of restoring education and patient care by forming new hospital affiliations in nearby cities, incorporating residents and faculty into new training sites, and essentially restructuring the entire residency program. This multi-city arrangement transformed us into a new “regional program”. We now practice at the following hospitals: LSU Interim Public Hospital and Children’s Hospital in New Orleans; Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, LSU Surgical Facility (out- patient) and Earl K. Long Hospital in Baton Rouge and University Medical Center in Lafayette.
We have worked hard at -- and had the good fortune of -- retaining and recruiting a very talented faculty, and as a team we have been able to develop a high-volume tertiary referral practice that serves as the cornerstone of our clinical training program. We now have a strong balance of seasoned and experienced senior faculty who have achieved national/international reputations in their respective fields, younger but experienced faculty who are clearly on track toward national recognition, and multiple junior faculty members who have immense potential as innovators and teachers.
We have also dedicated much of our time to research advancements. Dr. Hamilton Farris and Dr. Jennifer Lentz have represented LSU through many publications. Dr. Hamilton Farris was recently published in Smithsonian Science and Nature Communications. We are looking forward to a future appointment of an Instructor of Research. This appointment is to continue the fascinating work of developing a device that will serve as a “multi-detector,” characterizing tumors based on molecular structure, magnetic movement, and other factors and allows for prediction of response therapy. Additionally, we fully support a Postdoctoral position which has enhanced the mathematical and computational analysis of work related to high-speed digital imaging of vocal fold vibration. Dr. Ikuma Takeshi continues to facilitate the analysis of HSV data using the PVG method, determines the clinically salient PVG features and works on adding new clinically relevant parameters to PVG. We are hopeful that this addition to our research team will help achieve our goal of sustainable funding from the National Institutes of Health on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD).
The history of the LSU Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery is indeed a rich one, with nearly 80 consecutive years of clinical, academic and research excellence. Our experiences have further defined us as resilient, creative, and indefatigable in our missions of patient care, research, and resident education.