Department of
Obstetrics and Gynecology

UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN
SCHOOL OF MEDICINE AND PUBLIC HEALTH
Portrait

Connor C. Wang, MD
Resident PGY-4
Resident



Office Address
Meriter Hospital, Room: 5E-UPH
202 S. Park (Meriter)
Madison, WI, 53715

Wang publishes study on digital cervicography in Gynecologic Oncology Reports

Congratulations to UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD, PGY-4, who published a new study in Gynecologic Oncology Reports! The study was a cooperative effort with the UW SMPH Department of Family Medicine and Community Health.

In “Digital cervicography for cervical cancer screening in low-resource settings: A scoping review”, Wang and co-authors synthesized data from past studies to understand how digital cervicography (DC) is implemented in programs and whether it has a role in improving cervical cancer disparities in low-to-middle-income countries (LMIC):

“The use of DC in LMICs is beneficial for support of healthcare workers, enhances quality improvement and demonstrates overall acceptability in screening programs. Advancing technologies for human papillomavirus (HPV) testing and cytology are common methods for cervical cancer screening, although are limited in LMICs. This scoping review demonstrates the different methods, uses, and benefit of digital cervicography in cervical cancer screening programs.”

Read the whole article here!


Wang published in AJOG

UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD, PGY-4, is the lead author on new research in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology!

In “Trends in public- and industry-funded uterine cancer clinical trials and disability-adjusted life years from 2007 to 2019”, Wang and co-authors Shannon Rush, MD, Shitanshu Uppal, MD, Laurel Rice, MD, and Ryan Spencer, MD, MS queried a database to determine the number of years lost to death or disability from endometrial cancer along with the number of new clinical trials opened each year from 2007-2019.

This study showed that when taking into consideration societal cancer burden metrics, endometrial cancer has undergone a significant decline in the relative number of available clinical trials in the prior 13 years for which data is available. This data can be used to help shape policy around funding for endometrial cancer clinical trials.

Read the whole study here!


Dryer, Gross, Wang match into Gynecologic Oncology fellowships!

Please join us in congratulating the PGY-4 residents who matched into Gynecologic Oncology fellowships!

Kathryn Dryer, MD, matched into the University of Virginia Gynecologic Oncology fellowship in Charlottesville, VA. 

Maya Gross, MD, MPH, matched with the University of Washington Gynecologic Oncology fellowship in Seattle, WA.

Connor Wang, MD, matched into the Northwestern University Gynecologic Oncology fellowship in Chicago, IL.

We’re so proud of all our residents, incredible work!


Wang published in Menopause

UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD, PGY-4 is the lead author on a new study published in Menopause!

In “Barriers to surgical menopause counseling in gynecologic cancers: a quantitative and qualitative study of patients and providers”, Wang and co-authors used a mix of chart review and surveys to better understand experiences with menopause counseling and care:

“Younger age at surgery increased odds of receiving surgical menopause counseling. Gynecologic cancer patients experienced significant menopause-related disturbances. Improved understanding of patient and provider preferences and greater emphases on surgical menopause and survivorship will improve care for gynecologic oncology patients.”

Wang also recorded a video summarizing the study – watch the video here! Read the whole article in Menopause.


Wang publishes in Gynecologic Oncology

UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD, PGY-4, is lead author on a new publication in Gynecologic Oncology!

In “Mechanical and oral antibiotic bowel preparation in ovarian cancer debulking: Are we lowering or just trading surgical complications?”, Wang and co-authors Rana Al-Rubaye, MD, Lauren Montemorano, MD, Vienna Tran, MD, and Ahmed Al-Niaimi, MD, examined postoperative complications associated with preoperative mechanical and oral antibiotic bowel preparation (MOABP) for patients with ovarian cancer who underwent bowel resection at cytoreductive surgery (CRS):

“Patients who underwent preoperative MOABP prior to ovarian cancer CRS with bowel resection had lower odds or deep/organ-space infections and readmissions, shorter hospital stays, fewer diverting ostomies, and more optimal resections. However, these patients also experienced higher odds of ICU admissions and grade 3 or higher cardiac and gastrointestinal complications. The positive and negative postoperative outcomes in this population should be considered in clinical practice.”

Read the whole study here! Congratulations to the research team!


Wang published in Gynecologic Oncology Reports

UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD is lead author on a new article published in Gynecologic Oncology Reports! Wang’s mentor on this project (and senior author on the publication) is UW Ob-Gyn Division of Gyencologic Oncology Director Steve Rose, MD.

Adaptive and maladaptive humor styles are closely associated with burnout and professional fulfillment in members of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology” used a survey of members of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology to assess individual humor styles and their connection to burnout. Humor styles (including adaptive styles and maladaptive styles) were assessed using the validated Humor Styles Questionnaire, and professional fulfillment (PF) and burnout (BO) were assessed using the Professional Fulfillment Index. The study examined responses from faculty, advanced practice providers, fellows, and residents:

“Clinically, our findings suggest the possibility of humor-based interventions to address BO and improve PF in SGO members. Humor-based interventions could be humor-based positive psychology interventions (PPIs) or workshops. Humor-based PPIs can enhance psychological and emotional wellbeing, life satisfaction, mood, and lower depressive feelings. (Wellenzohn et al., 2018) They can also increase participants’ sense of humor. (Wellenzohn et al., 2018)…Our results further indicated that trainees were more likely than faculty and APP to employ aggressive and self-defeating humors, and trainees experienced significantly lower PF than did faculty. Therefore, trainees may benefit most from humor-based interventions.”

Read the whole study here.


Congratulations to winners of UW Ob-Gyn 2022 department awards!

On June 23, 2022, the UW Department of Ob-Gyn held its annual awards ceremony, recognizing educational, research and administrative accomplishments throughout the year.

The ceremony started by acknowledging a few momentous departures. Many people retired from the department this academic year, including:

Carol Carr, CNM (Midwife in the ASOG Division)

Janet Short (Medical Student Education program coordinator)

Theresa Duello, PhD (Research)

Joel Henry, MD (ASOG Division)

Laurel Rice, MD (Gyn Onc Division and Department Chair)

Jenny Stevens, MBA (Department Administrator)

Departures:

Emily Buttigieg, MD – headed to Albert Einstein School of Medicine as an academic specialist in ob-gyn

Jay Lick, DO – transitioned practice to UW Health Urgent Care

Jackie Peebles, MD – academic position at the Medical College of Wisconsin

Makeba Williams, MD – Vice Chair of Professional Development in the Washington University in St. Louis Department of Ob-Gyn


In Memorium:

Jason Austin – Dr. Ian Bird shared remarks about Jason Austin, longtime member of the UW Ob-Gyn Division of Reproductive Sciences, who passed away in March 2022. Jason was a senior research specialist who made countless contributions to our research mission, was an incredible educator of medical students, residents, fellows, postdocs and more, and his loss is deeply felt.


New Arrivals:

We also have the great joy of welcoming new arrivals: 

Scott Infusino, MD will join us in July as the Maternal-Fetal Medicine fellow. Infusino received his MD from Quinnipiac University, followed by ob-gyn residency at the University of Maryland.

A couple familiar faces will stay in our department for fellowships:

Matt Wagar, MD is the incoming Gynecologic Oncology fellow. Dr. Wagar attended the University of Minnesota Medical School and completed ob-gyn residency in our department. 

Ushma Patel, MD is the incoming Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery fellow. Dr. Patel attended Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine and completed ob-gyn residency in our department.

And of course, we are thrilled to welcome the Ob-Gyn residency intern class!


MEDICAL STUDENT AWARDS

DR. SAMUEL G. PERLSON SCHOLARSHIP – Ingmar Bastian (Baylor), Katarina Braun (Yale), Leeann Bui (Santa Clara)

This award goes out to one or more fourth year medical students planning to pursue a career in Ob-Gyn who have demonstrated outstanding abilities as a scholar and outstanding humanistic qualities.

T.A. LEONARD AWARD – Jamie Elizabeth Brown, Francis Arnold Perkins

The T.A. Leonard Award is given to one or more medical students in recognition of exemplary performance on their third year Ob/Gyn rotation. 

MEDICAL STUDENT EDUCATOR AWARD FOR RESIDENT TEACHING – Matt Wagar, MD

This award is given to a UW-Madison, Obstetrics and Gynecology resident, selected by 3rd and 4th year medical students, who exhibits a high interest in teaching, actively involves students in patient care, teaches at an appropriate level, is respectful, approachable, honest, and is a great role model. 

OUTSTANDING RESIDENT TEACHING AWARD – Talya Spivak, MD

Given to the most exceptional resident teacher in all of UW SMPH, as voted on by UW-Madison’s 4th year medical students.


RESIDENCY AWARDS

CHIEF RESIDENT RECOGNITION – John Poehlmann, MD (Administrative Chief Resident), Vienna Tran, MD (Administrative Chief Resident), Matt Wagar, MD (first-ever Education Chief Resident)

For service as the chief residents, academic year 2021-22

UW HEALTH INTERDISCIPLINARY GLOBAL HEALTH TRACK RECOGNITION – Ushma Patel, MD

Given to a graduating resident upon the completion of the Global Health Track.

UW HEALTH RURAL TRAINING TRACK RECOGNITION – Alexa Lowry, MD

Given to a graduating resident upon the completion of the Rural Training Track. 

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF GYNECOLOGIC LAPAROSCOPISTS (AAGL) AWARD – Connor Wang, MD

Given to a PGY-3 resident with special excellence in endoscopic procedures.

SOCIETY OF LAPAROENDOSCOPIC SURGEONS (SLS) AWARD – Maya Gross, MD

Awarded to a PGY-3, outstanding laparoendoscopic resident.

RESIDENT CREOG AWARD – Maya Gross, MD

Awarded for the highest exam score on the annual CREOG In-Training Examination

BEN M. PECKHAM AWARD – Matt Wagar, MD

Awarded to a senior resident for excellence in the teaching and clinical practice of Ob-Gyn, as voted by the residents.

SOCIETY OF GYNECOLOGIC ONCOLOGY (SGO) AWARD – Connor Wang, MD

Awarded to a PGY-3 who best exemplifies the qualities of the mission and vision of SGO.

SOCIETY FOR ACADEMIC SPECIALISTS IN GENERAL OBSTETRICS & GYNECOLOGY (SASGOG) AWARD – Jordan Ward, MD

Awarded to a PGY-4 who has distinguished themselves academically and demonstrates an interest in a career as an Academic Specialist.

AMERICAN UROGYNECOLOGIC SOCIETY (AUGS) AWARD – Madeline Wetterhahn, MD

Awarded to a PGY-3 resident demonstrating excellence in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, as chosen by the FPMRS faculty.

SOCIETY FOR MATERNAL-FETAL MEDICINE (SMFM) AWARD – Kaley Gyorfi, MD

Awarded to the PGY-2 resident who best exemplifies the qualities of the vision of our society to improve pregnancy and perinatal outcomes.


RESEARCH AWARDS

DOUGLAS W. LAUBE BEST TRAINEE PAPER AWARD – Kristal Gant, PhD

For the best peer reviewed paper by a graduate student dissertator or medical fellow.

ROLAND K. MEYER, PhD GRADUATE TRAINEE AWARD – Rachel Dahn, BS (mentor: Ian Bird); Kristal Gant, PhD (mentor: Manish Patankar)

Awarded to the graduate student dissertator showing the most scientific productivity and scholarly activity.

CHESTER B. MARTIN GRADUATE TRAINING PROGRAM MENTORSHIP AWARD – Luca Clemente, PhD (postdoctoral fellow in Ian Bird and Derek Boeldt’s lab)

Awarded to faculty or staff that has had the most impact on graduate student degree-related training.

PHILLIP R. HAMILTON III, MD RESIDENT RESEARCH AWARD – John Poehlmann, MD

Awarded to the senior residents demonstrating the best effort in research.      


ADVANCED PRACTICE PROVIDER AWARDS

APP/CNM EXCELLENCE AWARD – Megan Peterson, DNP

This award recognizes outstanding PA, NP, or CNM who routinely and regularly exemplifies the mission of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

BEST CONSULTING RESIDENT PHYSICIAN AWARD – Matt Wagar, MD

Given to a PGY-2, 3 or 4 who exemplifies significant consulting physician skills.


DEPARTMENT ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF AWARDS

OBGYN SUPPORT STAFF EXCELLENCE AWARD – Christy Lincicum

In recognition of outstanding staff who routinely and regularly exemplify the mission of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology through excellent performance and customer service.

JENNIFER STEVENS AWARD IN SUPPORT STAFF LEADERSHIP AWARD – Chad Craighill

In recognition of staff who display exemplary leadership skills, positive influence on colleagues, and an ability to affect change in support of the department’s mission and vision.

OBGYN SUPPORT STAFF PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT AWARD – Lisa Scott, PhD

In recognition of a commitment to lifelong learning and contributions to department success through continuing education.

OBGYN SUPPORT STAFF RISING STAR AWARD – Ariel Sorenson, MS

In recognition of a staff member who has been with the department 3 years or less who is emerging as a leader and whose record reflects ongoing and exceptional growth in contribution to the department mission. 


RESIDENT FACULTY RECOGNITION AWARDS

JOHN M. ANDERSON, MD MEMORIAL AWARD – Jackie Peebles, MD

For demonstrating the traits of Dr. Anderson: patience, integrity and compassion in the care of women.

KIMBERLEY J. MILLER-THORESON COMPASSIONATE COLLEAGUE AWARD – Patrice Grzebielski, MD

For demonstrating the traits of Dr. Miller-Thoreson showing respect, compassion, dedication and unending support towards their colleagues and trainees.

DOLORES A. BUCHLER AWARD – Luther Gaston, MD

For excellence in instruction at the senior resident level.

KARL A. RUDAT AWARD – Jay Lick, DO

For excellence in surgical teaching at the senior resident level.


FACULTY RECOGNITION AWARDS

LUIS “BEN” CURET AWARD IN OB-GYN EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE – Ian Bird, PhD

This award honors one individual who demonstrates a true passion for education. This awardee is selected by colleagues and recognizes one who exhibits compassion, patience, and respect for all learners and goes above and beyond expectations to create a positive educational experience within the discipline of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

LAUREL W. RICE OUTSTANDING FELLOW EDUCATOR AWARD – Jennifer Jacobson, MD

Given to one fellow for excellence in resident education.

ST. MARY’S ADJUNCT FACULTY EDUCATOR AWARD – Elizabeth Strom, MD (SSM Health)

Selected by the residents for excellence in resident education.

MERITER ADJUNCT FACULTY EDUCATOR AWARD – Sarah Yahnke, MD (Madison Women’s Health)

Selected by the residents for excellence in resident education. 

SOCIETY FOR ACADEMIC SPECIALISTS IN GENERAL OBSTETRICS AND GYNECOLOGY (SASGOG) AWARD – Cholene Espinoza, MD

National faculty award for dedication and commitment to the ideals of being an academic generalist.

SABINE DROSTE AWARD – Cholene Espinoza, MD

The Sabine Droste Award is selected by the junior residents for a faculty member who demonstrates excellence in instruction at the junior resident level.

ELLEN HARTENBACH AWARD – Emily Buttigieg, MD

Selected by the residents and given annually to the faculty member who has made the greatest contribution in simulation education.

CREOG FACULTY AWARD – Cholene Espinoza, MD

National faculty award for excellence in resident education.


Gross, Mojdehbakhsh, Wang selected as 2022-23 residency chiefs

Huge congratulations to soon-to-be PGY-4 residents Maya Gross, MD, Rachel Mojdehbakhsh, MD, and Connor Wang, MD, who were elected to serve as chief residents for the 2022-23 academic year!

Gross was selected to serve as Education Chief, while Mojdehbakhsh and Wang are Administrative Chiefs. They take over from graduating residents John Poehlmann, MD and Vienna Tran, MD.

Congratulations to the new chiefs!


Wang published in Gynecologic Oncology Reports

Congratulations to UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD, PGY-3, who is lead author on a new publication in Gynecologic Oncology Reports!

In the article “When we open and close: postoperative outcomes after aborted primary cytoreduction for ovarian cancer”, Wang and co-authors Matt Wagar, MD, PGY-4, Amy Godecker, PhD, Ahmed Al-Niaimi, MD, and David Kushner, MD aimed to expand available data to help counsel patients about outcomes after aborted primary debulking surgery.

This retrospective study looked at postsurgical morbidity for 43 patients who underwent aborted primary debulking surgery for advanced ovarian cancer:

“All patients subsequently underwent ICS, [interval cytoreductive surgery] with 21 (48.8%) achieving no residual macroscopic disease and 21 (48.8%) to ≤1cm of macroscopic disease. After AD [aborted primary debulking], 16 (37.2%) experienced at least one G≥3 event within the first 30 days. The most common complication was gastrointestinal complications. Preoperative albumin was the only significant predictor for G≥3 complication after AD.”

Read the whole study here!


UW Ob-Gyn presentations at 2022 Society of Gynecologic Oncology conference

Members of the UW Ob-Gyn Division of Gynecologic Oncology, fellows and residents prepared an impressive slate of posters and presentations for the 2022 Society of Gynecologic Oncology Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer! Take a look at just some of the research brought to the hybrid conference, as well as the variety of service and leadership roles held by members of our department:

Ahmed Al-Niaimi, MD:

Master Class: Optimize and Operate: Enhancing Perioperative Quality, Safety, Experience, and Outcomes

Master Class: Debulk and Deliver: A Virtual Live-Streamed Master Class with Optional Hands-On Cytoreductive Surgery Lab 

Oral Plenary Presentation: Mechanical bowel preparation and post-operative renal dysfunction in patients undergoing cytoreductive surgery for ovarian cancer

Lisa Barroilhet, MD, MS:

Distillation: On-Demand Oral Featured Posters: Novel Therapies, PROs, and Disparities in Care

Special Interest Session: Curriculum for Emerging Clinical Trialists (Dr. Barroilhet is course director for this session)

Vice-Chair of the Patient Education Committee

Katherine Dryer, MD:

Poster: Outpatient palliative care utilization and aggressiveness of end-of-life care in women with gynecologic cancers (authors Kathryn Dryer MD, Janelle Sobecki MD, Michael Lasarev MS, Lena Law BA, Anna Stecher MD, Ellen Hartenbach MD)

Maya Gross, MD, MPH:

Poster: Risk factors associated with distress among postoperative patients in an academic gynecologic oncology practice

Ellen Hartenbach, MD:

Symposium: Wake to Wellness: Beating Burnout Through Better Patient Communication (Hartenbach presented “Mitigating Burnout Through Effective Communication Techniques”)

Palliative Medicine Committee 

Clinical Practice Committee

David Kushner, MD:

Finance Committee

Wellness Committee (Chair)

Developed two “Wake to Wellness” Sessions based on SGO Wellness Curriculum that was just published:

Managing Priorities 

Moving from Surviving to Thriving (Kushner will present as part of this session)

Senior author on Surgical Innovation presentation “Beneath the Surface: Fluorescein mapping in vulvar Paget’s Disease” given by Gyn Onc fellow Catherine Zhang, MD

Joanne Rash, PA:

Attending the SGO Board meeting (virtually), and will start her board term as the first-ever APP representative on the SGO board

Stephen Rose, MD:

Co-Chair of the Fellowship Program Directors Network and will be leading the annual meeting Thursday night. 

Hosting the UW Fellow Alumni Reception Sunday night

Senior author on Connor Wang’s study: Adaptive and maladaptive humor styles are closely associated with burnout and professional fulfillment in members of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology

Shannon Rush, MD:

Poster: Hormone replacement therapy counseling at prophylactic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy in high risk patients

Janelle Sobecki, MD:

Poster: Risk factors associated with distress among postoperative patients in an academic gynecologic oncology practice (Maya Gross, Sumer Wallace - Senior)

Poster: Outpatient Palliative Care Utilization and Aggressiveness of End-of-Life Care in Women with Gynecologic Cancers (Kathryn Dryer, Ellen Hartenbach – Senior)

Sumer Wallace, MD:

Serves on Policy, Quality, & Outcomes task force for the Health Policy and Socioeconomic committee

Connor Wang, MD:

Poster: Adaptive and maladaptive humor styles are closely associated with burnout and professional fulfillment in members of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology

Catherine Zhang, MD:

Poster: Thromboembolic events in gynecologic cancer patients treated with chemotherapy (authors R. Zhang, MD; T. Stewart, BS; K. Tetreault, MS; R. Alexandridis, PhD; J. Bergsbaken, PharmD;  S. Wallace, MD; D. Kushner, MD;E. Hartenbach, MD)

Farr Nezhat Session Surgical Innovation Session: How Surgical Futurists are Revolutionizing Cancer Care (Zhang presented “Beneath the Surface: Fluorescein mapping in vulvar Paget’s Disease”)

Congratulations to all for these incredible achievements!


Wang presents oral abstract at SGO 2021 virtual conference

During the 2021 Society of Gynecologic Oncology Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer, UW Ob-Gyn resident Connor Wang, MD, PGY-2 presented an oral abstract!

Wang presented the abstract “Cancer lethality: An important burden metric to consider for the allocation of clinical trial research funding from all sources” during a session on Sunday, March 21:

GYN cancers have significantly fewer initiated studies when compared by Lethality across funding categories. Lethality incorporates incidence, mortality, and YLL. It is an important measure of individual cancer burden and should be considered for funding allocation. Within all cancer sites, there is a significant trend towards rising industry and other funded trials and a trend towards decreasing or stagnating number of public funded studies. This data can be used to investigate reasons for the differential allocation of resources regarding clinical trial initiation.”

Congratulations, Dr. Wang!


First HAGO Conference was a great success!

On September 10-11, the UW Ob-Gyn Division of Gynecologic Oncology hosted the first-ever Heartland Association of Gynecologic Oncology (HAGO) meeting. More than 70 gynecologic oncology professionals tuned in for the virtual conference, which included two keynote presentations and 21 research abstract presentations.

HAGO was founded in 2020 by UW Ob-Gyn Division of Gyn Onc Director Stephen Rose, MD, and the program committee included Ryan Spencer, MD and UW Ob-Gyn Gyn Onc fellowship graduates Andrea O’Shea, MD and Shitanshu Uppal, MD.

Of the 21 abstracts selected for presentation, five were from our department (Matthew Wagar, MD with mentor Sumer Wallace, MDWagar with mentor Makeba Williams, MDShannon Rush, MD with mentor Steve Rose, MDRachel Mojdehbakhsh, MD with mentor Ryan Spencer, MD; and Connor Wang, MD with mentor Spencer).

UW Ob-Gyn Gyn Onc fellow Shannon Rush, MD earned the first Award for Clinical Research for her abstract “65 Revisited: A Revised Markov Model for Evaluating Oophorectomy at the Time of Hysterectomy for Benign Disease”!

Lisa Barroilhet, MD was also an invited distillation presenter and UW Ob-Gyn Department Chair Laurel Rice, MD gave a keynote address and received the inaugural HAGO Award for Service and Leadership.

Our congratulations to everyone involved in planning and preparing the HAGO Conference – incredible work!