Paediatric Researcher Starts
Amal Abou-Hamden MB.BS, B.Med.Sc.(Hons), FRACS. Amal, Adelaide girl, has returned as a staff neurosurgeon with appointments at the Royal Adelaide Hospital and the Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
Amal started her Neurosurgical Career here in Adelaide where she undertook research in head injury and syringomyelia under the then NRF Chair of Neurosurgery Prof Nigel Jones, funded by the Neurosurgical Research Foundation (NRF).
The NRF is pleased to announce that Amal has completed her postgraduate fellowships in Melbourne and Toronto and will be bringing much needed new skills to the neurosurgery departments at the Women’s & Children’s Hospital (W&CH) and Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH).
Finishing her training at the RAH & W&CH as a Neurosurgery Registrar in 2005, Amal completed her final 2 years of neurosurgical training as a Senior Neurosurgical Registrar at Monash Hospital in Melbourne, working with adult and pediatric patients. After successfully completing her neurosurgery training, Amal started her work in epilepsy surgery at the Austin Hospital in Melbourne as the epilepsy surgery fellow for 6 months.
She then travelled to Canada where she spent 1 year at Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto and completed a Paediatric Neurosurgery Fellowship. She subsequently completed another fellowship year at the Toronto Western Hospital, in Cerebrovascular Neurosurgery. Her neurosurgical areas of expertise include cerebrovascular and epilepsy surgery both in adults and children. Her cerebrovascular surgery experience includes surgery for aneurysms, AVM’s, carotid artery stenosis, moya moya disease, cerebral revascularization, stroke and brain haemorrhage.
One of her goals is to establish, in collaboration with neurology colleagues, an Epilepsy Surgery program which will benefit up to 5 – 10% of children and adults living with severe, medically intractable epilepsy. Amal will also be taking up Paediatric Neurosurgery Research, funded by the NRF.
Children are still suffering everyday and travelling interstate for necessary treatment such as epilepsy surgery. Amal’s addition to the W&CH Paediatric Neurosurgical team will endeavor to change this. The neurosurgical skills she has acquired interstate and overseas can help change the lives of some people living with epilepsy and she is eager to establish an epilepsy surgery program in Adelaide.
She will be working on combining scientific research and translating it into the clinical setting leading to potentially lifesaving treatment. One of her initial priorities is to improve the accuracy and therefore success of shunt insertion for hydrocephalus patients by using intraoperative ultrasound for shunt placement. This can also be a useful adjunct for certain cranial and spinal operations for tumors or hemorrhage.
Amal is committed to excellence not only in her surgical skills and delivery of health care to patients, but also in the advancement of the understanding and treatment of neurosurgical disease through clinical and basic science research as well as establishing dedicated subspecialty units which have been shown to improve patient outcomes.