Interview: Dr. Abdullah Algadheeb, Urology Fellow
Tell us about yourself!
Hi, I’m Dr. Abdullah Algadheeb and I’m currently completing a fellowship with Humber River Hospital’s Urology Program. I am from Saudi Arabia, and I came to Canada two years ago for a fellowship in Hamilton. I arrived at Humber River Hospital in August and will be here for a year.
What kinds of things are you training in during your Urology fellowship?
I am training in laparoscopic urology, robotic surgery using the da Vinci Surgical System, and endourology which includes minimally invasive procedures performed with an endoscope through the urethra.
What is the difference between minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery and surgery with the da Vinci Surgical Robot?
Both types of procedures are performed through small incisions but the da Vinci robot allows the surgeon to have a full 360° range of motion from inside the patient. During more complex cases, it gives us as surgeons the opportunity for very precise movements in deeper areas.
One of our current fundraising priorities is upgrading from the da Vinci Si to the da Vinci Xi. How will this make a difference to the surgeons who use the robot?
The Xi is definitely an improvement from the Si. The most notable difference in my opinion is the docking time, the time it takes to position the robot for surgery. Docking time for the Si can sometimes take 20-30 minutes. The Xi uses lasers for positioning, so it takes closer to 5-10 minutes, which saves valuable OR time.
The Xi also has auto-balancing for the camera which saves even more time and improves diagnostics. This process with the Si is manual, requiring us to make adjustments throughout the surgery – with the Xi we can better focus on the procedure rather than the equipment.
What makes you proud to be part of the Urology team at Humber?
Humber River Hospital is a very exciting place to practice because its Urology Program sees a large volume of cases annually, and so this gives me the opportunity to train in a variety of types of cases. I’m learning a lot from the other Urologists, who all have different experiences and different perspectives. Our team also includes three women, which is not common at other hospitals, and means we can cater to more comfort levels.
Because of the volume, the variety, and the team I’m working with, this fellowship has offered learning opportunities I really don’t believe I could have found in any other fellowship!
What has it been like working with Dr. Jack Barkin (Our 2022 Doctor of Philanthropy)?
My advice for anyone on their way to becoming a doctor is to try to find people who can help guide you.
Dr. Barkin has been like a mentor to me. He’s been very supportive of my learning. I’ve done a number of cases with him and working with him has been amazing.
What do you love about your job?
I love being a doctor because we care for human beings – what could be better than that? After med school I was deciding between Orthopaedics and Urology. Orthopaedics is amazing, but it’s like a completely different language – it involves a lot of physics, angles, and range of motion. Urology just makes sense to me. I love how clinical the practice is, and that it is a subspecialty that offers a lot of variety.
What is something you’re looking forward to in the next year?
My wife and I want to explore Canada while we’re here! We have heard great things about Montreal and Vancouver, and we want to see Blue Mountain soon.
The da Vinci Surgical Robot is the centerpiece of the Murphy and Helen Hull Robotics Centre at Humber River Hospital. The Centre was established thanks to a transformational donation from the late Murphy and Helen Hull.
Help Expand Robotics at Humber River Hospital
As we look to the future, it’s time to expand our Robotic Surgery Program to help even more Canadians. With your help, we can bring a second ROSA® to Humber, upgrade our da Vinci Surgical Robot to the newest Xi model, and add Intellijoint HIP for total hip replacements, continuing our journey of innovation and helping Canadians get back to their lives quicker. Click here to learn more or contact Caterina Magisano at firstname.lastname@example.org