Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine

News and Announcements


Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)
for UCSD Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine Patients will be offered on
Monday, September 19 - Monday, November 17, 2016.

UCSD Center for Mindfulness
5060 Shoreham Place                           
Suite 330
San Diego, California 92122              
United States


Email: mindfulness@ucsd.edu

Please click here to register for this course.



                                          Marisa Magana, MD
Dr. Magana was selected by the Department of Medicine Clinical Services Committee for an award for “Leadership and innovation in patient-centered systems”.   The PCCSM Division wholeheartedly agrees and says, “Congratulations- well deserved!”  The award will be given at the DOM Clinical Services meeting on May 12, 2016.

  2016 Attending Physician of the Year: Kim Kerr, MD


Each year the Medical Staff Executive Committee obtains nominations from the Attending Staff in recognition of one individual to receive the Attending Physician of the Year Award. The nominees are evaluated on their patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning, interpersonal and communication skill, professionalism, and systems-based practice. We are pleased (but not surprised) that Dr. Kim Kerr was selected from this year’s nominees to receive the 2016 Attending Physician of the Year award.
Congratulations Dr. Kerr!

International Award Winner
Rebecca Sell, MD won the Young Iinvestigator Award at the19th Asia Pacific Respiratory Society in Bali, Indonesia, November 2014.


Update on Lung Cancer Screening - As seen on KPBS Evening Edition 1/2/14
Estimates by the American Cancer Society ranks new cases of lung cancer in 2013 third behind only prostate cancer and breast cancer.  The difficulty in detecting it means more people die from lung cancer than breast, prostate and colon cancer combined.

Now, the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force said lung cancer screening for many chain-smokers and former smokers should be done with a CT scan instead of an X-ray.

Under the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — CT scans are to be covered by a patient's insurance. According to the Associated Press, task force-recommended cancer screenings are to be covered under the law without the requirement of a copay. However, as the AP reports, there is a one-year time period to adopt new recommendations.

Click here to see explanation from Dr. Philippe Montgrain, UCSD Pulmonologist.
3,000th Pulmonary Thromobendarterectomy Surgery (PTE) performed
Surgeons at UC San Diego Health System have performed their 3,000th pulmonary thromboendarterectomy (PTE), a lifesaving surgery to clear the lung's arteries of scar-like tissue that robs patients of their ability to breathe. During the extraordinary eight to ten hour surgery, the patient is put into a form of suspended animation in which the heart and blood circulation is completely stopped and the brain ceases activity while surgeons clear the pulmonary arteries of disease. Learn more Understanding PTE Surgery

Patients are worked up and followed by our PTE Pulmonary physicians: Dr. Bill Auger, Dr. Nick Kim, and Dr. Kim Kerr.  To see video of the 3,000th patient to have this surgery done at UCSD, click here.

Dr. Kevin Shaw received an Academy of Clinical Scholars Faculty Development Award for his project proposal:  "Transitions of Care in the Cystic Fibrosis Population".  Congratulations, Dr. Shaw, for being selected for this AoCS award!

We are delighted to announce that UC San Diego Health System is once again ranked among the nation’s best in U.S. News & World Report’s 2013-14 “America’s Best Hospitals” issue. The magazine placed UC San Diego Health System #1 in the San Diego metropolitan area with national rankings in 10 specialties, placing it among the country’s most prestigious institutions. We are especially proud that UCSD Pulmonology was ranked #9 nationally! Congratulations to our dedicated physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists and all who make up the UCSD Pulmonary team!

Congratulations to Dr. Willis Li and his research team for their discovery of a new mechanism that seems to suppress tumor growth. His study report entitled, "Unphosphorylated STAT5A stabilizes heterochromatin and suppresses tumor growth" was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). For more information, click: Potential New Way to Suppress Tumor Growth Discovered

Dr. Willis X. Li


American Lung Association Honors Dr. Tim Morris

Each year, the American Lung Association in California honors outstanding San Diego citizens for their work in the fight for healthy lungs and clean air. All honorees commit to improving air quality and lung health, not because it is required, but because it is the right thing to do. This year, the American Lung Association in California is proud to present the 7th annual Evening in the Sky Gala to celebrate the 2013 honorees:

Our own Dr. Tim Morris, SDG&E, and Dr. Mel Hovell. The event will be held at the University of San Diego, Hahn Center on Friday, June 7, 2013. Congratulations, Dr. Morris! We are very proud to have you on our team.

For more information click: Evening in the Sky Gala

Pulmonary Thromboendarterectomy program honored as “Center of Excellence”
The physicians, surgeons and team members who pioneered the lifesaving pulmonary thromboendarterectomy (PTE) procedure at University of California, San Diego Health System are being honored for excellence at the annual CHEST conference, hosted by the American College of Chest Physicians, in Atlanta, October 20 to 25, 2012.  The PTE program based at the UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center is among 11 specially selected “Centers of Excellence” showcasing the defining characteristics and practices that make them unique among health-care providers.

Dr. Bill Auger, Alicia Gormican and Dr. Nick Kim: proud to lead the PTE Program at
UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center. For more information, please click here.


Congratulations to Tim Fernandes!   Dr. Fernandes was a semifinalist for the Top Poster Award at CHEST 2012. The title of his poster, "Hospital-acquired and Post-discharge Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) in Patients with Cancer Hospitalized for a Medical Illness: Analysis of Risk Factors and Effect on Survival."  Dr. Fernandes was one of only 10 finalists for this award. The decision for the top finalist will be announced next week.


We are pleased to announce that 6 of our physicians were named “Top Docs” in San Diego Magazine’s “Physicians of Exceptional Excellence” survey.  The list is created by compiling the responses of each member of the San Diego County Medical Society, who is asked to vote for board-certified physicians practicing in San Diego County to whom they would refer their own patients, family and friends.  Being rated among the best by colleagues is a distinct honor.  These physicians are being recognized not only for their expertise, but for their dedication to our patients and for providing superb service.  

Critical Care Medicine                                                   Pulmonary Disease
Peter Fedullo, MD                                                           William Auger, MD
Kim Kerr, MD                                                                    Timothy D. Bigby, MD
Kevin Shaw, MD                                                               Samir S. Makani, MD

Congratulations for the recognition of your excellent work!

Congratulations to Our Health Sciences Colleagues on Their Recent Appointments, Accomplishments, Awards and Honors:

Dr. Timothy Bigby received the Department of Medicine's Leadership & Innovation in Patient-Centered Systems Award for 2011-2012. The annual award recognizes the clinical program leader whose efforts have achieved particular excellence in service of the patient care mission in internal medicine and its subspecialties.

Dr. Timothy Bigby


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                        • Congratulations to Dr. Peter Fedullo as new Chief of Staff for UCSD Medical Center.  The Medical Staff Administration has appointed Dr. Fedullo to this position for 2012 - 2014.  Dr. Fedullo previously served as Vice Chief of Staff from 2010 – 2012.

Congratulations to Dr. Mark Fuster for his first RO1 Grant titled, "Lymphatic Microenvironment: Altering Cell Traffic by Targeting Glycans".  According to Dr. Fuster, the basic focus is on novel mechanisms that control the traffic of immune cells and tumor cells to regional lymph nodes.  According to Dr. Fuster, the basic focus is on novel mechanisms that control the traffic of immune cells and tumor cells to regional lymph nodes.  Understanding the mechanisms that control such "lymphatic cell traffic," including immunologic responses in cancer, is an area of opportunity.  We think that the actions of some key molecules that drive such cell traffic may be "orchestrated" by novel interactions with complex carbohydrates on the lymphatic landscape.  He hopes that the research will guide the development of new approaches to inhibit pathologic immune responses as well as tumor-cell traffic.  Another hope is to improve our basic understanding of lymphatic vascular biology.