When Dr. Alan Koffron was growing up, his father was a woodworker who could fix nearly anything. “Between my father’s career and working as a veterinary technician in high school where I was able to assist with surgery, I wanted to take the ‘fix it’ mindset and apply it to patients,” Dr. Koffron says. Now, he has been practicing for 26 years and loves the challenge and reward that comes with restoring organs, but he notes that patient input and teamwork among the staff is what truly elevates the experience. “Our staff is very supportive of one another, and it allows us to tailor our care for individuals’ particular needs,” says Dr. Koffron. “One of my personal philosophies is to always listen to the patient – they know themselves best. Just being sincere and caring makes everything else much easier.”
“The innovation needed to replace an organ in a way that it works in a new individual is challenging and extremely rewarding.”
1. What do you love most about your profession?
I love returning patients to health. Many organ recipients have been ill for years prior to a transplant, and it is a pleasure to be a part of the new life that they can enjoy.
2. What is one of your happiest professional moments?
Being a part of the creation and validation of a minimally invasive organ donation. Organ donors are heroes – anything we can invent or create to help them donate and speed their recovery is foremost.
3. What is your best advice for patients?
Ask questions. Everyone is different and has different personal worries and needs. Your care team needs your input to help address those.
4. What do you see as the most exciting new development for your profession?
By far, it’s medication advances. The medications effectively prevent organ rejection, so that recipients need less medication and experience fewer side effects.
5. What would you consider to be your main strengths?
Keeping an open mind. I always try to keep improving, take advice, and find those people and examples that can elevate my skills.
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