Dermatologic surgeon fills educational need with Fundamentals Series videos
Kavita Mariwalla, MD
May 10, 2013, Rolling Meadows, Ill.
– Every time Kavita Mariwalla, M.D., prepared to teach a new class, she
inevitably would find herself creating a dermatologic surgery lecture from
scratch. The time-consuming task was a regular reminder that teaching would be
much more efficient if she had a ready-made series of surgical lectures.
That led Dr. Mariwalla, an assistant professor at Stony Brook University
in New York and a dermatologic surgeon in private practice, to create the
American Society for Dermatologic Surgery’s Fundamentals
Series – an educational tool from which both residents and residency
programs can benefit. The series provides dermatology residents – regardless of
their post-graduate year level – with high-quality, up-to-date didactic lectures
on basic subjects in dermatologic surgery.
“It’s a lot of work to
create a lecture from scratch, so I thought it would be nice to produce a series
of lectures that everyone can use for teaching,” said Dr. Mariwalla, an ASDS member. “It allows them to
learn the basics of dermatologic surgery at their own pace and on their own
time. It also allows them to stay up-to-date with peers who may have strong
surgical sections in their dermatologic programs.”
chose five narrow topics for the initial installments in the Fundamentals Series
to ensure that even if students had already graduated residency, dermatologic
surgery still could be accessible to them.
Each 45-minute lecture
begins and ends with a test of five questions to gauge the listener’s pre- and
post-lecture knowledge of the subject. The lecture topics include:
• Components of the surgical tray and instrument sterilization methods
• Sutures and wound closure materials
• Phases of
• Proper suturing technique
“The first five
lectures of the Fundamentals Series act as a basis for a learning library that
can be continually added to such that a surgical curriculum emerges for
residency programs to follow,” Dr. Mariwalla said. “One of my goals was to have
residency program directors consider the Fundamentals Series for inclusion into
dermatology residency curriculum.”
In the long term, Dr. Mariwalla
said she hopes that the Fundamentals Series can create a ladder of learning for
all dermatologists in procedural dermatology.
“Surgery in dermatology
is taught in a varied way and is constantly changing,” she said. “This allows
people to go back and review the basics, and it gives them a platform on which
to continue growing and learning – like a ladder. The project shows the
commitment the ASDS has to education and also its belief in its young members to
launch projects to help shape the field of dermatologic surgery.”
Fundamentals Series – a result of a 2010-11 ASDS Future
Leaders Network project – is one of the many steps in the ASDS expansion of
its role in education and becoming the source for lifelong learning in
In 2012, Dr. Mariwalla was the recipient of the
ASDS Award for Outstanding Service, which recognizes young, emerging leaders of
the ASDS who have demonstrated commitment to the Society's growth and success.
The next five lectures in the series, to be released later this
year, will include the topics of local anesthetics, elliptical excision,
neurotoxins, laser and light-based devices, and sclerotherapy.
Members can view the Fundamentals Series videos at: asds.net/Fundamentals/.
About the ASDS
The American Society for Dermatologic
Surgery (ASDS) is the largest specialty organization exclusively representing
dermatologic surgeons who have unique training and experience to treat the
health, function and beauty of the skin. ASDS members are pioneers in the field.
Many are involved in the clinical studies that bring popular treatments to
revitalize skin and fill and diminish wrinkles to the forefront. Their work has
helped create and enhance many of the devices that remove blemishes, hair and
fat, and tighten skin. Dermatologic surgeons also are experts in skin cancer
prevention, detection and treatment. As the incidence of skin cancer rises,
dermatologic surgeons are committed to taking steps to minimize the
life-threatening effects of this disease. For more information, visit asds.net.
American Society for Dermatologic