1. Salcido, Richard MD

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In last month's issue of Advances in Skin & Wound Care, I announced that we are preparing to unveil our revised editorial advisory board and peer review panel. To date, we have secured responses from nearly all of our newly invited members. Over the next several months, I would like to take the opportunity to shine the spotlight on a few of our many distinguished wound care professionals.

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With this month's editorial, I am happy to welcome Caroline E. Fife, MD, to our editorial advisory board. A very prolific member of the wound care community, exemplified by her increasing levels of responsibility and leadership, Dr Fife's current positions include: Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology at the University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston, and the Director of Clinical Research for the Memorial Hermann Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Wound Care program. Additionally she is the Chief Medical Officer of Intellicure, Inc, The Woodlands, Texas.


Dr Fife has an extensive background in hyperbaric medicine, following her father's example; her father was a physiologist at Brooks Air Force Base and was one of the initiators of the seminal hyperbaric program in aerospace medicine for the Air Force's aerospace program at that time. Dr Fife was asked to serve in Turkey to be the doctor for the Institute of Nautical Archeology, which was doing some very deep and dangerous diving as it excavated the world's oldest shipwreck (3000 years old). She was essentially practicing "diving medicine," which invigorated her desire for advanced training in this emerging area of medicine. Thus, Dr Fife secured and completed a Fellowship in Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine (USHM) at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina. In addition, she simultaneously spent 2 more summers as a physician excavating in Turkey.


Subsequent to her Fellowship in USHM at Duke, Dr Fife was recruited to develop a hyperbaric medicine program at the University of Texas Houston. Her expertise, innovation, and leadership facilitated the unification of regional commercial diving needs, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) initiatives, and hyperbaric medicine under 1 programmatic umbrella. Owing to her capable leadership, under Dr Fife's direction her group engaged in shaping important altitude decompression research that ultimately facilitated NASA space station readiness.


"We participated in some really important altitude decompression research that allowed the space station to be built, a project that helped decrease the amount of time the astronauts have to breathe oxygen (called "oxygen pre-breathe") before they make a space walk to prevent them getting decompression sickness," shared Dr Fife.


Despite spearheading these technological advances used in deep waters and outer space, Dr Fife had some land-based (down-to-earth) problems to address. She wanted to solve everyday patient care issues common to patients presenting with a complexity of wounds and faced her next challenge: how to heal them.


Her interest in medical practice, academics, and patients with chronic non-healing wounds cemented Dr Fife's interest in wound care. Ultimately, her dual interest in wound care and USHM culminated in Dr Fife's appointment to a committee to decide what wound care products would be stocked on Space Station Freedom to handle wound and surgical emergencies in space.


Her missionary zeal for wound healing led to the development of a nationally recognized wound center at the University of Texas Houston in 1992, followed by a lymphedema center in 1998. Dr Fife's progressive work in lymphedema has lead to exciting work in mapping the lymphatic system to help us understand normal and pathologic lymphatic flow as it relates to lymphedema management. Not content to stand still, in 1995 Dr Fife began linking her experiences in the wound clinic with the need for electronic medical records (EMR), with a focus on wound management. In 2000, she formed a company with David Walker, and in 2002, began to license Intellicure EMR to clients. The Intellicure Research Consortium is now the largest repository of complete wound care data in the world. It is increasingly being used to answer important questions regarding how our patients really respond to the products and other interventions that we do.


Dr Fife is also the co-editor of the textbook Wound Care Practice with Paul Sheffield. She serves on the Board of the Association for the Advancement of Wound Care and is a past board member of the American Academy of Wound Management. She became a certified wound specialist in 1998, and became sub-specialty board certified in USHM in 2000.


Please join me in welcoming Dr Fife to the editorial advisory board of Advances in Skin and Wound Care.


Richard "Sal" Salcido, MD

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