Pitchamol Vilaisaktipakorn, MD, is currently in the USA for a clinical paediatric neuromuscular fellowship with the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in Ohio, but is originally from Thailand and plans to return to Thailand after completing her fellowship.Image is a headshot of Pitchamol Vilaisaktipackorn, MD. She is known as Peach. Peach has long, straight dark hair and wears a cream blazer. She is smiling at the camera.

Pitchamol, known as Peach, attended medical school at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand, before completing a paediatric and child neurology residency at University of Chicago, in Illinois, USA. She has been in her current position since 2023.

Peach was drawn to the emerging field of neuromuscular diseases. She says: “When I was medical student, there was no treatment specific to neuromuscular diseases, but then during my journey to becoming a child neurologist, there have been many emerging treatments specific to diseases including SMA and DMD. I believe that we can help patients to optimise their quality of life.”

Her main interest is in DMD and BMD, including the multidisciplinary outcomes in this new genetic therapy area. In clinic, she sees patients with DMD, BMD, SMA, myotonic dystrophy, congenital myopathy, congenital muscular dystrophy, metabolic myopathy, mitochondrial myopathy, CMT, and anything that relates to muscle and nerves.

Working in the United States, Peach sees one of the main challenges for patients is the distance they have to travel for the comprehensive, multidisciplinary clinic. She says: “I believe access to care for all organ systems needed in each patient is the key to optimising a patient’s quality of life. These specialties include neurology, rehabilitation, pulmonology, cardiology, endocrinology, dietitian, physical therapy, and psychology. I found that patients who are willing to travel to here for many-hour drive or even on a flight, often say that it is difficult to find such comprehensive care locally. Here is like a one stop service for them, and that is important for most neuromuscular diseases.”

Peach is inspired by patient improvement. She says: “I love seeing patients getting better or at least able to enjoy their daily activities as much as they can. Whether there is disease-specific treatment for a patient or not, I believe we can help patients optimise their quality of life.

“Also, going to national and international meetings gives me inspiration to pursue this career to help patients in my home country.”

Recognising the importance of international working in our field, Peach says: “I think collaboration is the key here, since technology in diagnosis and treatments in different countries are developing differently, one might have something that the other needs, or need something that the other might have! Also, in some rare diseases, it is good to look into patients from other places who have the same or similar diagnosis to be able to help each other learn more about those diseases, which could potentially lead to further investigations.”

Published on 25 March 2024.

Related

03 Apr 2024 Fellowship benefits for 2023 recipients

31 Mar 2024 March newsletter from the World Muscle Society

26 Mar 2024 Sustainability at the WMS

WMS Twitter Feed
WMS Facebook Feed