Medical Graduates Join the Knowledge Dissemination Force

The Gilbert and Rose-Marie Chagoury School of Medicine holds its fourth-annual research day to celebrate and share Lebanon-focused original findings by its residents and fellows.

By Sara Makarem

Residents and fellows at the School of Medicine presented their research projects and case reports to a multi-disciplinary jury representing different medical specialties.
Dr. Chatila said that each edition of the event aims to feature higher quality and more impactful projects.
Dr. Chaaban highlighted the event’s role in advancing LAU research, peer knowledge-sharing and providing key data for Lebanon’s medical community.

For physicians, the journey from knowledge recipients to knowledge creators begins with research, the driving force behind scientific advancement.

However, to generate high-quality research that merits international publication and benefits both the local and global community, medical graduates must master key skills such as selecting appropriate research methods and designs, gathering data, and refining presentation techniques.

These skills were put to the test at the LAU Medical Center–Rizk Hospital on April 15, 2024, during the annual Graduate Medical Education Research Day, where residents and fellows from the Gilbert and Rose-Marie Chagoury School of Medicine presented their research projects and case reports to a multi-disciplinary jury representing different medical specialties.

The school offers a 12-session Introduction to Research course that covers various aspects of conducting research, starting with the generation of research questions, study design, literature review, obtaining IRB approval, hypothesis testing, and more.

Dr. Toufic Chaaban, clinical assistant professor and program director of the pulmonary disease fellowship at the school of medicine, said that this event not only cultivates a research culture within LAU’s community and facilitates knowledge-sharing among medical peers but also serves as a reliable source of data for the broader medical community in Lebanon.

“Since much of the research presented today focuses on data from patients in Lebanon,” noted Dr. Chabaan, “this ensures tailored findings and treatments that align with the country’s shared epidemiological characteristics.”

The projects included original prospective and retrospective research, systematic and narrative reviews, and meta-analyses and a few case reports.  These were conducted by residents and fellows from various departments, such as family and internal medicine, orthopedics, general surgery and dermatology.

Assistant Dean for Research and Chair of the Department of Human Genetics Andre Megarbane, who served as a jury member at the event, stressed the central role that research plays in honing a critical-thinking approach to learning among trainees.

“Conducting research teaches trainees not to take learning at face value and to adapt what they learn in class to real-life situations in the country,” he remarked.

Other jury members included Dr. Ayman Assi, associate professor at the Faculty of Medicine at Saint Joseph University, Dr. Hicham Cheikh Hassan, clinical associate professor and associate program director of the internal medicine residency program at the Gilbert and Rose-Marie Chagoury School of Medicine and Dr. Michele Cherfane, associate professor at the school.

“What distinguished this year’s event was the acceptance of submissions that already have results to share,” noted Dr. Rajaa Chatila, clinical associate professor and assistant dean for graduate medical education. “With each edition, we are trying to raise the bar for the projects presented to included higher quality and more impactful projects,” she added.

Dr. Emile Haykal, an orthopedic surgery resident at the medical center came first in the Original Research Projects and Metanalysis category for his study on using real-time measurements of the femoral head size during surgery to help determine the correct size of the socket part of the hip joint in hip replacement surgery. The other winners were as follows:

Second position: Dr. Zeid Ibrahim, PGY3 general surgery resident, for his research on laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy for cancer treatment.

Third position: Dr. Rana Attieh, PGY2 internal medicine resident, for her research on the Lebanese adult perceptions about travel vaccination.

Fourth position: Dr. Evelyne Towair, pulmonary and critical care fellow, for her research on burnout among residents in Lebanon.