Sanjay P. Prabhu MD
Professional Title: Assistant Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School
Locale: Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA.
Fellowships: Pediatric Radiology, Pediatric Neuroradiology, Pediatric Cardiac Imaging
ASPNR member since 2012
ASPNR: What attracted you to pediatric neuroradiology?
Sanjay Prabhu: I love the extremely varied nature of pediatric radiology that occurs from fetal life to late teenage years. If you ask me what I like about pediatric neuroradiology, I would tell you that it surprises me every day with something new or a variation on what I thought was “pathognomonic”- that is always humbling and rewarding. There is so much we don’t know about the pediatric brain and so much we can do to help the child on the other side of the scan!! I could go on and on….
ASPNR: Do you have a colleague or mentor that inspired you in your career?
SP: I was first introduced to pediatric neuroradiology by Alan Sprigg in Sheffield. He made game-changing diagnoses on cranial ultrasounds in the neonatal unit where I was a pediatric resident. That showed me the direct impact radiology can have on patient care. Working with neuroradiologists like Marcus Likeman in England, during my residency, and with Lee Coleman in Melbourne, during my pediatric radiology fellowship, further fueled my interest in the field. Finally, my colleagues at Boston Children’s Hospital have been a great support and inspiration.
ASPNR: What is your favorite part of your job?
SP: The collaboration in the weekly 2-hour epilepsy conference is the most enjoyable part of my job. I love the interaction with my neurology colleagues and neurosurgeons, and I love it when I can make the key imaging finding that helps the team decide or change and sometimes even abandon a surgical approach. The 6-month epilepsy surgery outcomes meetings are also very gratifying as I can see the results of the team’s efforts.
ASPNR: What is the biggest challenge of your job?
SP: Trying to keep up with the ever-expanding tomes of literature about new insights in medicine every single day, like genomics and radiomics, so that we can keep up with our subspecialist clinicians who are asking us to image and interpret!
ASPNR: What is the most interesting project you are working on right now?
SP: Machine learning and AI-based diagnostic tools in brain tumors and epilepsy to maximize the yield of high-quality imaging.
ASPNR: What words of wisdom would you pass on to your junior attending self?
SP: Learn from every experience, the good and the bad. When you are tired at the end of a long workday, remember that behind every image there is a clinician, a patient, and the patient’s family eagerly waiting to hear what you have to say. This will instantly cause a paradigm shift in your thought process. Finally, avoid overcommitting yourself – if the answer to a request is not “Hell, yes!”, then just say “No, thank you”!
ASPNR: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
SP: I love to sing Bollywood songs and I can speak more than 10 languages. However, I cannot remember directions to familiar destinations without a GPS!
ASPNR: Will you be attending the 2020 ASPNR meeting in South Beach?
SP: Absolutely!! Looking forward to the rendezvous with stars of the pediatric neuroradiology world in the beautiful city of Miami!