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Current Fellows

Group photo of directors and fellows of the 2020-2021 Pediatric Pulmonology Fellowship
44198-Wall, Brittany

Brittany L. Wall, MD

PGY 6

Hometown: Ashland, KY 

Research Interests: Cystic fibrosis, high risk asthma, and interstitial lung disease

Hobbies: Playing with my dog, spending time with my husband, college football/basketball (War Eagle), golf, and craft beer

Why Peds Pulm?
I became interested in pulmonology starting at a young age as a child with asthma which led to my interest in a career as a physician.  In medical school, I enjoyed learning about the mechanics of lung physiology, as it required the integration of anatomy, physiology, and physics.  As I progressed through my clinical rotations, I began to appreciate the complexities of caring for patients with pulmonary diseases.  This became particularly apparent as I gained exposure to pediatric patients with cystic fibrosis and high risk asthma during pediatric residency.  Not only was I fascinated by the mechanisms of the underlying disorder, I also enjoyed the complex, multidisciplinary care required of these patients.  My time as a pediatric pulmonology fellow has made it evident that I made the right decision as I enjoy having the opportunity to manage an array of disorders in both an inpatient and outpatient setting along with doing procedures.The pulmonary patients I met as a Peds intern were my favorite patients. It was a busy month and I still loved it! I really became attached to the chronic challenges of pulmonary disease and loved the varied scope of the field.

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38184-Averill, Sam

Sam H. Averill, MD

PGY 5

Hometown: Edgewood, Kentucky

Research interests: High risk asthma, stem cell transplant patients

Hobbies: Running, Orange Theory, concerts, cooking, bourbon

Why Peds Pulm?
I chose pediatric pulmonology for so many reasons. I loved the patient population, how you can have life-time continuity with patients in and out of the hospital. Additionally, there are so many opportunities for scholarly activity and interesting research.

Why IU/Riley?
Choosing Riley was the obvious choice to continue my training because of all of the amazing physicians that work here. I knew that I would receive excellent training and grow in my relationships with my colleagues. Riley serves patients from all over the region and I knew I would see not only the "bread and butter" of pulmonology but also the rare diseases. During my residency I was able to witness the strong relationships between fellows, faculty and and their research mentors.

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38333-Krasinkiewicz, Johnny

Johnny M. Krasinkiewicz

PGY 5

Hometown: I am originally from Windsor, Ontario in Canada.

Research interests: Although I am currently undecided on the specific facet of research I wish to pursue, my interest within pulmonary lies in bronchopulmonary dysplasia and pulmonary arterial hypertension. We have a large repository of patients and I am excited to meet with my mentors to start discussing potential projects!

Hobbies: I enjoy going for runs and hikes, playing and recording music (I play guitar, piano, and sing), playing video games, and going for brunch with friends. 

Why Peds Pulm?
I’ve always had to understand “why” things work in order to remember them, and I feel that mindset has attracted me to the specialties that are more physiology-based. In addition, pulmonary is a broad field that offers fun procedures, challenging diagnostic mysteries, and great continuity of care in both inpatient and outpatient settings.

Why IU/Riley?
Everyone has their own values when it comes to what’s important to them and, for me, it was a combination of numerous factors. I felt that Riley fell into this “Goldilocks zone” where it was big enough of a program to have many opportunities, but not so big that I felt overwhelmed and develop a “choice paralysis”. Because I was undecided in my exact niche within pulmonary, I felt this was the perfect place for me as there is a high faculty-to-learner ratio and everyone I had interacted with was so willing to invest in me and help me reflect on my experiences to truly decide what’s most fulfilling for me.  In addition, we perform a substantial number of bronchoscopies and our research is quite well-funded. And finally, I loved the collegial environment that everyone here helps create and the proximity to my family as well.

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38199-Saunders, Jessica

Jessica L. Saunders, MD

PGY 5

Hometown: I grew up in a small town in Indiana about an hour outside of Indianapolis - Rushville, IN.

Research interests: I am interested in CF research and received the first year Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Fellowship Grant this year. During residency I worked on a project looking at factors associated with poor nutritional outcomes in patients with meconium ileus and in fellowship I plan to expand on this project with Dr. Sanders using the PHIS database to review more patients nutritional and pulmonary outcomes. I have also helped with a QI project looking at FEV1 indicated CF exacerbation signals and cannot wait to choose a fellowship project that will allow me to explore my interests in CF further.

Hobbies: Outside of the hospital, I enjoy spending time with my dog and my husband, going out to eat, swimming on the Indiana Master’s team, cooking, traveling and exercising. 

Why Peds Pulm?
My fascination with pulmonology also started at a young age, as I watched one of my cousins suffer from asthma and was able to see first-hand the impact that diagnosis can have on a family. My decision to pursue pediatric pulmonary medicine as a career was solidified when I traveled to Australia for three months during medical school and contributed to an asthma research study and had the chance to work on a project looking at factors that may impact the severity of asthma exacerbation and hospitalizations. Although I learned a lot about asthma that summer, the most memorable part of the trip was meeting a CF and double lung transplants. During my time there, I gained and intimate understanding of a patient’s life and how future research is essential to improving the care of CF patients.

Why IU/Riley?
I was a Riley kid growing up, I completed my residency here and I loved it so much I wanted to stay! The Pulm faculty here are the most amazing group to work with and there is no place else I would rather be!

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42160-Almeda, Marco

Marco S. Almeda, MD

PGY 4

Undergraduate School: Loyola University Chicago      

Medical School: Creighton University School of Medicine

Residency: Indiana University

Why did you pursue a Peds Pulm fellowship?  The pulmonary population is at an (obvious) increased risk of respiratory failure -- and as a Pulmonologist, I'd like to be part of the team that helps prevent it! I know their care can be particularly complicated (daily medications, different breathing treatments, vents, etc.), so I'd like to work closely with families to turn an overwhelming disease into something more manageable.

What do you like about the IU School of Medicine program? Having done residency here, I knew I'd get good exposure to the Pulmonary patient population - and the faculty and staff are some of the best I've ever worked with! We get both primary service and consult experience at a busy institution, but work-life balance never seems to be compromised - as evidenced by how cool, calm, and collected all the fellows are.

Research/QI interests? Aerodigestive, Neuromuscular, Chronic Vent patients

Future plans?  I'd like to stay involved with medical education (and possibly some administration work) in addition to caring for the patient populations above.

Hobbies/ Interests? Concerts, breweries, and tacos.

What do you enjoy in Indianapolis? Biking along the Cultural Trail, canal, or Monon. Going out to the different neighborhoods. And finally, the Rooftop Bar in Fountain Square!

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