School of Medicine
Faculty of Health Sciences Queen's University

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, also known as Physiatry, is the branch of medicine concerned with the comprehensive diagnosis, medical management and rehabilitation of people of all ages with neuromusculoskeletal disorders and associated disabilities.  Physiatrists work in a diverse range of subspecialty areas to help patients with a variety of impairments related to conditions such as stroke acquired brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, amputation, and various musculoskeletal disorders.  Physiatrists play a vital role in our health care system and as the Canadian population continues to age, the demand for their services will only continue to grow.

Registration Reminder

Published Wed Apr 23/14 10:00am.
All residents who plan to continue in their residency programs in 2014-2015 are reminded that they must complete the online registration process.  You will need your Queen's NetID and Password in order to log into the secure online registration system. Once into the system, you will be guided through the requirements for Queen’s Postgraduate Medical Education registration and Kingston General Hospital contract renewal and reappointment. Please note that you can complete the KGH information at any time. You are encouraged to complete this as quickly as possible.   Complete information is available at 

Travill Debate 2014

Published Thu Apr 17/14 1:00pm.
The Travill Debate 2014

New Division of Dermatology launched

Published Wed Apr 16/14 2:00pm.

The shortage of dermatologists in the local area is about to end. Today the Department of Medicine at Queen’s University is launching a new academic Division of Dermatology. The clinics will be based at Hotel Dieu Hospital and the Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario.

“Canadian Dermatology Workforce Survey documents indicate that the clinical needs of an area with the population of Southeastern Ontario should be served by approximately nine dermatologists,” says Stephen Archer, Head of the Department of Medicine at Queen’s. “Until now, however, we’ve had only one very busy private practice dermatologist.”

“Typically, patients have seen the existing dermatologist, been referred elsewhere or not seen at all.  Patients have been dramatically underserved here, and the recruitment of these two new dermatologists marks the beginning of the long journey to address those patient needs and to build an outstanding academic dermatology program at Queen’s.”

The Hotel Dieu clinics started up the week of March 31, when Yuka Asai began seeing patients.  Recruited from McGill University where she is completing a PhD, Asai brings clinical expertise in dermatology and research interests that include understanding the genetic basis of peanut allergy.  In August, the division will add a second specialist physician/PhD, Mark Kirchoff, to help meet the growing demand for dermatological services at a time when skin cancer rates alone are skyrocketing.

Still in its early days, the new Division will ramp up slowly, he says, which means patients eager for an appointment should not expect to be seen immediately. “We’re facing a decade of need that won’t be solved overnight.  We want to develop the program in a way that doesn’t swamp capacity,” Dr. Archer explains.

Patients will require a referral from their family physician to attend the clinic at Hotel Dieu, which is being equipped with therapeutic phototherapy technology used to treat various skin diseases and conditions such as psoriasis, eczema and skin lymphoma.  At present, the clinic is targeting adults only.

For more information visit the Hotel Dieu website.

2014 Simulation Olympics

Published Wed Apr 16/14 10:00am.

The 2014 competition will be held on April 30th, May 1st and 2nd (Wed/Thurs/Fri) at the Queen’s Clinical Simulation Centre. Faculty-supervised practice sessions will be announced at a later date.

All teams must have the following: 4 members total with a maximum of 2 senior residents, an RN and/or RT member, and a supervising faculty coach.  Faculty coaches are responsible for practice sessions and debriefing during the competition.  Teams without an RN or RT will not qualify to go beyond the preliminary round. 

Registration will be open until April 1st and will be capped at twenty teams.

This year’s competition schedule will include a preliminary rounds (minimum 2 scenarios per team), a semi-final round, and a final round (top 3 teams overall).  The top placing teams from the preliminary round will advance directly to the FINALS.  The SEMIFINAL round will be a single elimination format (2nd-5th place teams). 

Wednesday, April 30th (AM & PM) & Thursday, May 1st (AM).                     
Thursday, May 1st (PM) for out-of-town teams only.

Friday, May 2nd (AM) for the 2nd-5th place teams overall.

Friday, May 2nd (4-6pm) for the 1st place team overall (direct from PRELIMS) and the 2 SEMIFINAL winners.

As in previous years, there will be lots of expertise to share, prizes to win, colleagues to share stories with, and an awards ceremony reception following the finals.  Come out and enjoy the competition as a competitor, spectator, or senior administrator/educator.


Contact Jessica Montagner (Dept EM) by phone 613-548-2368 or email c/o 2014 Simulation Olympics competition. Please include your team name, team captain contact info (cell/pager/email), team members, faculty coach, and preferred preliminary competition day/time. 

Researcher finds gaps in care for high-risk cancer patients

Published Mon Apr 14/14 10:00am.
Christopher Booth (Queen’s Department of Oncology and Kingston General Hospital) has found that chemotherapy before or after surgery for high-risk bladder cancer is not commonly used in routine clinical practice despite the fact that it is shown to improve long-term survival by five per cent. He is now using those findings to better understand the barriers to using chemotherapy, with the goal of implementing a plan to improve treatment rates.
“Results from our study demonstrate that chemotherapy given after surgery improves patient survival—probably on the same order of magnitude as chemotherapy before surgery,” says Dr. Booth. “Patients having surgery for bladder cancer should have chemotherapy, either before or after surgery. Efforts are needed to improve uptake of this treatment, which appears to be vastly underutilized.”

To investigate, Dr. Booth, a member of the Cancer Research Institute at Queen’s University, examined treatment records of all 2,944 patients who had surgery for high-risk bladder cancer in Ontario between 1994 and 2008.

Use of chemotherapy before surgery remained stable (an average of four per cent of patients) over the study period despite international guidelines recommending its use.  Despite more limited evidence supporting its use, chemotherapy after surgery increased over time: 16 per cent of patients between 1994 and 1998, 18 per cent between 1999 and 2003, and 22 per cent between 2004 and 2008. Study results showed that use of chemotherapy after surgery improved long-term survival by five per cent.

“The reasons for underutilization of chemotherapy in high-risk bladder cancer are not well understood. This problem is not unique to Ontario and has been identified by researchers in the United States and Europe,” says Dr. Booth. “It likely relates to a complex interaction between physician knowledge, beliefs and attitudes and patient preferences.

“More work is needed to understand what is driving this gap in care so that interventions to improve treatment delivery may be implemented in Ontario and beyond.”

The findings are published online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society.

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