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Howard Rowley Receives 2020 Gold Medal from American Society of Neuroradiology

Howard Rowley, MD, has been awarded the 2020 Gold Medal by the American Society of Neuroradiology. This award honors exceptional service and achievement in neuroradiology and recognizes Dr. Rowley’s many contributions to stroke trials, dementia research and advanced imaging techniques, as well as what is perhaps is greatest contribution—his gift for teaching and his ability to distill complex topics into manageable and memorable information.
“This is not really my award. It’s an award given to all the people who taught me and supported me, especially my partners in medical physics,” said Dr. Rowley, who is a Professor of Radiology, Neurology, and Neurosurgery; Chief of Neurological MRI, and the Joseph F. Sackett Professor of Radiology at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. “I stand on the shoulders of giants—everyone from janitors to administrative assistants who have made this possible. I’m grateful for all of those connections.”
His peers have hailed him one of the greatest educators in Neuroradiology. Dr. Rowley’s skill for teaching and his ability to communicate science into easily understandable presentation—in a way that can be practically applied—have defined his career and are recognized throughout the neuroradiology community. He said he hopes the knowledge he has acquired over the past 30 years will be passed on to help others improve their practice of medicine and understanding of imaging physics. “Last year at a meeting someone came up to me and said, ‘you won’t remember me, but you gave a talk 20 years ago, and I still use your construct’,” Dr. Rowley said. “Maybe he’s the only person in the world, but I like to think maybe there are 10 or 12 people who I’ve impacted and that’s what motivates me.” Dr. Rowley said he views sharing knowledge as a tool to build collaborative community, generate new ideas and question assumptions, and he has used the COVID-19 pandemic to re-evaluate his teaching methods and reinvigorate as an educator. By disseminating knowledge, he hopes to inspire others to create even better solutions to problems and incrementally improve the field. Dr. Rowley is also working to promote health equity by developing brief MRI protocol. MRIs can be very expensive, especially for children or older adults who may require sedation or anesthesia to conduct an exam. Over the past few years, he and his colleagues have led the field in fast imaging, particularly for children with hydrocephalus and patients suspected to have had a stroke or other neurologic emergency. These new protocols find the necessary information for diagnosis within a shorter time, reducing cost and extending the reach of imaging to more people. Dr. Rowley has been involved in ASNR since 1990, serving as chair of the Foundation from 2010 to 2015 and as ASNR President during 2016-2017. By Josie Zindler, communications intern, as part of a series focusing on members of the school who received national awards during the 2019-20 academic year. https://www.med.wisc.edu/news-and-events/2020/september/howard-rowley-receives-2020-gold-medal-from-asnr/

Wisconsin Partnership Program welcomes new PERC member - Dr. Jason Stephenson

The Wisconsin Partnership Program is pleased to welcome Jason W Stephenson, MD to the Partnership Education and Research Committee (PERC). Dr. Stephenson was appointed by Dean Robert Golden, and replaces Dr. Tracy Downs, who has served on the committee over the past four years. Dr. Stephenson is an associate professor in the SMPH Department of Radiology. He is board certified in diagnostic radiology. Dr. Stephenson’s expertise, clinical interests and commitment to resident and medical student education will greatly inform and enhance the PERC’s work. The Wisconsin Partnership Program thanks Dr. Downs for his leadership and contributions to PERC. In addition to serving on PERC, Dr. Downs served on the PERC’s Executive Committee and provided thoughtful and thorough review and evaluation of PERC grant applications. He also brought a very important voice and perspective to the Partnership Program’s health equity work and participated in its inaugural Advancing Health Equity conference. The Partnership Education and Research Committee broadly represents SMPH faculty, staff and leadership, and allocates and distributes funds designated for education and research aimed at improving the health of Wisconsin residents. Original article: http://wpp.cmail19.com/t/ViewEmail/d/189ED324F917E0E82540EF23F30FEDED/79AB7C3285E0CDBBD8E2A916412CAE5B

Radiology "Fact or Fiction" Panel Hosted by Department Radiology Interest Group


The Department of Radiology, along with the medical student Radiology Interest Group, hosted a new event for incoming medical students - Intro to Radiology: Fact or Fiction Panel. Panelists (including Dr. Mai Elezaby, Dr. Jane Lyon, Dr. Daniela Martin, Dr. Teresa Martin-Carreras, and Dr. JP Yu) shared their experiences as radiologists and helped to clear up some prevailing misconceptions about the field. Despite the all-virtual format, students spent their noon hour asking insightful questions and also had the opportunity to be matched with radiology mentors!

Dr. Burnside Receives ACR Grant to Support Clinical Informatics Research

Dr. Elizabeth Burnside
Dr. Elizabeth Burnside, Professor of Radiology and Associate Dean for Team Science and Interdisciplinary Research, was recently awarded a grant from the American College of Radiology (ACR). The ACR Fund for Collaborative Research in Imaging (FCRI) will support a multi-site project titled: Algorithms for Accurate Adaptive Audit Methods (A4M). As an extension of Dr. Burnside’s work in clinical informatics, the A4M project is designed to harness the power of artificial intelligence and medical imaging to advance breast cancer screening quality improvement. While breast cancer screening in the U.S. has effectively reduced overall breast cancer mortality, not all women have benefited. In the U.S., the lack of meaningful comprehensive quality improvement capabilities and persistent variability of practice, precludes evaluation and subsequent targeted improvements of mammography screening practices. Scalable and cost-effective approaches are needed to enable U.S. radiology practices and policy makers to better evaluate widespread breast cancer screening performance. Audits provide the opportunity to understand variability of practice and favorably influence quality of care. A recent Cochrane Review revealed that audit feedback can effectively improve professional performance and patient outcomes. The ACR National Mammography Database (NMD), currently provides mammography audit capabilities to over 400 practices throughout every region of the US. However, the NMD has substantial challenges related to incomplete capture of outcomes data. Developing algorithms to overcome the issue of incomplete data capture is a rapid and pragmatic solution, with the potential to increase the value of NMD as a tool for monitoring quality and outcomes in the near-term. Development of these adaptive audit algorithms would enable the NMD to more accurately measure radiologists’ performance. The A4M project has the capability to quickly and cost-effectively develop algorithms that empower the NMD to provide more accurate outcomes data to all mammography screening practices. The goal of the A4M project is to develop adaptive audit methods to account for incomplete outcomes data capture when calculating metrics on University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW Madison) breast cancer screening data. These methods will be validated on data from two additional sites: the Vermont Breast Cancer Surveillance System and the University of California-Davis (UC-Davis), both affiliated with the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium (BCSC). The realization of the potential to audit mammography screening widely and accurately could provide a foundation on which quality improvement initiatives could save thousands of lives per year in the U.S. The A4M project will be led by Dr. Burnside in collaboration with co-investigators Brian Sprague (Vermont Breast Cancer Surveillance System); Diana Miglioretti (UC-Davis); Janie Lee (University of Washington); and Amy Trentham-Dietz (University of Wisconsin-Madison).

Successful Shapiro Summer Research Program Concludes with Virtual Twist

The Shapiro Summer Research Program allows medical students the opportunity to complete an original research project with a faculty mentor during the summer between their first and second year. Due to COVID-19, all 2020 Shapiro projects had to be completed remotely, but our Department of Radiology faculty mentors rose to the challenge. Eleven Shapiro Summer Research Students completed projects with seven faculty mentors, ranging from comprehensive literature reviews to 3D image reconstruction.

Dr. Drew Ross, MD, with the help of Katie Yang, MS, created a new Radiology Shapiro Summer Research Mentoring Program, which provided students with on-demand support to join professional societies, present at national conferences, and connect to the field of academic radiology. The program also built community among the students and faculty through biweekly Peer Mentoring meetings, in which students presented an elevator pitch-style take on their research and challenges they faced in the remote environment. Radiology faculty (Dr. Amy Fowler, Dr. Lori Mankowski Gettle, Dr. Jason Stephenson, and Dr. JP Yu) facilitated these sessions and helped students to develop solutions to the challenges that they faced.

The new Radiology Shapiro Summer Research Mentoring Program concluded with students presenting virtual of graphical abstracts of their projects. Faculty, fellows, residents, and medical students joined to watch students discuss their work. Congratulations to all the Radiology Shapiro Summer Research Students on their fantastic work, and thank you to all of faculty mentors and facilitators for making this program possible!

Radiology Interest Group Hosts M4 Student Event Online

Allison Grayev
Dr. Allison Grayev
Dr. Daniela Martin
Mathew Larson
Dr. Matthew Larson
Radiology Interest Group faculty mentors Dr. Daniela Martin and Dr. Alison Grayev, along with second year resident Dr. Matthew Larson, recently hosted an online panel for rising M4 students interested in applying to Radiology. The Radiologists fielded questions about changes to the radiology residency application process due to COVID-19 and how to find the best “fit” when everything is virtual. The event was attended by seven students interested in applying to the residency in the fall, and the panel was able to field numerous questions. The students indicated this session was especially helpful in planning their applications. Those interested in learning more about the UWSMPH Department of Radiology Residency Program, please visit radiology.wisc.edu/education/residency/.

Dr. Propeck Appointed as American Board of Radiology Trustee

Dr. Pamela Propeck

Pamela Propeck, MD, Department of Radiology faculty member in the Community Radiology Section, was recently appointed as a Trustee of the American Board of Radiology (ABR). Dr. Propeck will serve as the lead Breast Specialist, providing oversight and direction to ABR staff and volunteers relating to the examination process for radiologist board certification. Dr. Propeck has held numerous important roles in the ABR, beginning as an examiner for breast certification, serving as a senior advisor on the Online Longitudinal Assessment (OLA) Committee, and, most recently, the Chair of the ABR OLA Committee. Dr. Propeck’s appointment to this important position affirms her long-standing contributions to the field, and is the culmination of her wide experience and expertise in precision medical imaging and diagnostic breast imaging. Dr. Propec is the third department faculty member to serve as an ABR  Trustee. Previous Trustees from UW Radiology are Lester Paul, MD, and Joseph Sackett, MD.

Alan McMillan and Multidisciplinary Team Awarded R01 Grant

Alan McMillan
Dr. Alan McMillan

Professors Alan McMillan, PhD, Associate Professor in the UWSMPH Department of Radiology, Po-Ling Loh, PhD, Associate Professor in UW’s Department of Statistics, and Varun Jog, PhD, Assistant Professor in the UW College of Engineering were awarded an R01 from the National Library of Medicine. The title of their project is “Can Machines Be Trusted? Robustification of Deep Learning for Medical Imaging.” The goal of their research is to study ways to strengthen deep learning networks by looking at the ways in which they fail in both intentional and real-world situations. This research will be funded from the National Library of Medicine FOA [PAR18-896] - NLM Research Grants in Biomedical Informatics and Data Science.

Professor Alan McMillan, PhD, received a pilot grant that helped bring the idea of the development of robust AI. “We have always been able to engineer good solutions with AI for any problem… however, it is not known how the methods will respond in respect to unanticipated inputs” Professor Alan McMillan also stated when talking about how they came up with the idea. AI is very specific to the data and application that was used to train the model, so what works well at UW may not work at other institutions for many reasons. Some of the causes of the AI “failures” is that there is data that it hasn’t seen before, or patient effects like motion, operator error of the scanner, or other artifacts could cause an AI algorithm to give an unpredictable result.

Neuroimaging Lab Team Awarded $3.9 MM Grant

Vivek Prabhakaran
Dr. Vivek Prabhakaran
Dr. Veena Nair

Associate Professor Vivek Prabhakaran, Research scientist Dr. Veena Nair, and Postdoctoral fellow Dr. Jiancheng Hou are part of the team that has been awarded a $3.9 million NIH grant. This grant will focus on the neurodevelopmental deficits in macaque infants that have been exposed to the Zika virus in utero. The group will work with experts in neurodevelopment, neuropathy, and neuroradiology while utilizing quantitative MRI, hearing and visual studies. This is the third NIH grant received by this team, also including his work on Brain Computer Interface (BCI) and its effects on the rehabilitation time of stroke patients, clarifying the overlapping pathology of delirium and dementia, and mapping the connectome in Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy (JME).

Liisa Bergmann Wins Award for Executive MBA Project

Dr. Liisa Bergmann

Liisa Bergmann, MD, MBA, along with her cohort team in the UW Executive MBA program, created a business plan as part of a capstone project for their Executing Strategy course. The project won the “most Innovative” project award in the Badger Sett competition. Her business plan was for a potential new product, a CPR training system called “ResusciDGi.” ResusciDGi is a CPR training system that combines the internet and a digitized manikin that feels more like a human, to allow for socially-distanced CPR training and certification. Her team’s project was voted to be the most innovative by her professor, a team of two judges, and her classmates. The invention has been disclosed to WARF, where it is now under consideration, while its team of creators is working on prototype development. Dr. Bergmann is a graduating MR fellow in the department.