Fourth-year medical student Justin Baum is preparing for a career in neurosurgery by getting exposure at national conferences.
His latest presentation focused on one of two main ways to treat aneurysms: microsurgical clipping. Baum made a case for clipping rather than the alternative endovascular coiling method because clipping, although more invasive, offers a much lower chance for the aneurysm to grow back.Baum, with the help of Dr. Azedine Medhkour, associate professor of neurosurgery at The University of Toledo, presented the video titled “Clipping of an Unruptured Middle Cerebral Artery Aneurysm Complicated by a Wide Neck and Incorporation of the Temporal Artery” at the annual meeting of the American College of Surgeons in October in Chicago.
Baum said Medhkour has served as his mentor for the past four years. The video of the procedure, which was performed at UT Medical Center, demonstrated a clipping technique where the retraction of the brain is minimized.
“Whenever possible, it is good to limit retraction because it can cause unnecessary trauma to the brain, which can lead to brain swelling, focal strokes or seizures,” Baum said.
Medhkour said Baum is making connections that will help him secure a residency after he graduates in May.
“Justin is one-of-a-kind when it comes to intellectual prowess and hard work,” Medhkour said. “He has had many works accepted at national and international conferences — work that is normally presented by senior residents or attending neurosurgeons.
“They call him ‘Dr. Justin,’ even though he tells everyone he is a fourth-year medical student,” Medhkour said. “At UT, we encourage our medical students to be more aggressive and scholastic. Our students should be prepared for academia early on as we have some of the brightest minds on campus. I think Justin is a good example of someone doing just that, and he will be an excellent neurosurgeon in the near future.”
In May, Baum also gave a presentation on “Traumatic Lung Injury and Multiple Organ Trauma Effects on Traumatic Brain Injury Patients” at the annual meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons in Washington, D.C.