End Stage Renal Disease Outcomes Research | PCOM DO Student
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End Stage Renal Disease Outcomes Research 
Katie Bombly (DO '24)

February 1, 2022

Osteopathic medicine student Katie Bombly (DO ‘24) holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a doctorate of nursing practice from The University of North Florida.

PCOM South Georgia medical student Katie Bombly (DO ‘24)Prior to and throughout her medical education and training, Bombly has been involved with research. She has worked alongside physicians as well as fellow medical school students to complete research projects that directly affect challenges in health care.

What do you study?

The research I am involved in seeks to investigate different outcomes in populations affected by end-stage renal disease (ESRD) requiring hemodialysis (HD) in the Atlanta area. The poster presented at the Southern Association of Vascular Surgeons Annual Meeting discussed treatment outcomes in the undocumented population who underwent arteriovenous (AV) access creation requiring HD. Future investigations will be identifying how the management of patients with ESRD can be improved.

What prompted you to pursue research?

As an aspiring vascular surgeon, I wanted to learn more about the common diseases seen in this specialty to be able to provide exceptional care for my future patients. I also believe that by participating in research, I have the opportunity to be a part of finding solutions to important healthcare challenges including improving quality of life, creating equitable healthcare access and identifying the best evidence-based treatment approaches.

What experience do you have conducting research?

Prior to medical school, I worked as a clinical research nurse with inpatient populations conducting phase II and phase III clinical trials for a few years in Jacksonville, Florida. Some of the studies I worked on utilized treatments for reducing the burden of atherosclerotic plaques in coronary arteries, minimizing liver and kidney injury during open-heart surgery and reducing the symptoms associated with acute heart failure. While pursuing my Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), I completed my final project and manuscript by studying the screening modalities and management of hepatitis C in patients in underserved areas who could not afford health insurance.

At PCOM South Georgia, I have collaborated with other second-year medical students Samual Prahlow (DO ‘24), Anthony Sciuva (DO ‘24) and Emily Wilson (DO ‘24) to evaluate the histopathologic evidence of atherosclerosis in various arteries in cadavers from the Southeastern United States. My classmates and I will present our findings as a poster at the International Conference on Pathology in March 2022. Additionally, I am working with another classmate, Alexandra Cain (DO ‘24), and a local general surgeon, Amber Holt, DO, evaluating perioperative management of gastric outlet obstruction.

What are your responsibilities in this research project?

As a research intern, I work with a team from Emory University Medical School which includes other medical students, vascular surgeons and vascular surgery fellows. In collaboration with EUMS, the vascular surgery team treats patients at Grady Memorial Hospital which allows access for myself and other research colleagues to screen and collect data from their patients who underwent surgical AV access creation for HD. Additionally, I am working with Christopher Ramos, MD, vascular surgeon and assistant professor at EUMS on two projects: 1) comparing the patency of various AV access sites to add to the existing body of knowledge related to HD access and 2) the role of perioperative therapies on AV access outcomes.

What is the broader impact of your research?

ESRD is a chronic disease that has historically reduced life expectancy and has a significant impact on not only patients and caregivers, but the healthcare system as a whole. Our database has collected information that may identify barriers that delay patient access to care, which leads us to finding possible solutions to improve patients’ quality of life and reduce unnecessary hospital visits and procedures.

How does your research affect healthcare/health professions?

The improved management of patients with ESRD requiring hemodialysis (HD) also impacts other healthcare professions commonly involved such as nephrologists, primary care physicians, dialysis centers and emergency department members. Patients with ESRD utilize these services often, sometimes a few times a week. With improved HD access management, departments and team members are more efficiently used, and ideally, emergency services are reduced.

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  • About PCOM South Georgia

    In 2019, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM), a premier osteopathic medical school with a storied 125-year history, extended its commitment to the Southeast by establishing PCOM South Georgia. An additional teaching location in Moultrie, Georgia, PCOM South Georgia offers both a full, four-year medical program leading to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree and a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences. PCOM is a private, not-for-profit institution that trains professionals in the health and behavioral sciences fields. Joining PCOM Georgia in Suwanee in helping to meet the healthcare needs of the state, PCOM South Georgia focuses on educating physicians for the region. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 229-668-3110.

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