Boston Marathon 2016: Running to Support Trauma Research

April 14, 2016 Brigham and Women's Hospital

Margarita Ramos, MD, MPH, a research fellow in the Department of Surgery, will run her first marathon on April 18 as a member of the BWH Stepping Strong Marathon Team.

Margarita Ramos, MD, MPH, will run her first marathon on April 18 as a member of the BWH Stepping Strong Marathon Team.

Margarita Ramos, MD, MPH, a research fellow in the Brigham and Women’s Department of Surgery, will run her first marathon on April 18 as a member of the BWH Stepping Strong Marathon Team, supporting innovative trauma research and clinical care.

“I can’t wait to join thousands of runners at the Boston Marathon who believe in making a difference,” Dr. Ramos says. “It will be a day to celebrate the resilience of the human spirit.”

Dr. Ramos says she is excited to run in honor of Gillian Reny, a family friend and Boston Marathon bombing survivor, who was treated at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH). As a spectator at the 2013 Boston Marathon, Dr. Ramos quickly learned from a friend of the Renys that Gillian had been critically injured and transported to BWH. Dr. Ramos hurried to the hospital to see how she could help.

“As a trusted friend, I wanted to do everything I could to help Gillian’s family understand the steps the surgical trauma team was taking to care for her,” says Dr. Ramos. “I reviewed X-ray images with them and answered their questions. It takes a multidisciplinary medical team to care for our trauma patients, and I was glad to participate.”

Because of this experience, Dr. Ramos was inspired to continue research in the field of limb reconstruction. During her general surgery training at BWH, Dr. Ramos participated in more than a thousand surgeries. She founded the Cost and Effectiveness in Surgery research group with E.J. Caterson, MD, PhD, of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, where she has mentored dozens of premedical, medical, and dental students and published numerous articles on providing cost-effective care and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

Dr. Ramos is currently working on several research projects, including preserving tissue after trauma and treating and preventing traumatic wound infections with a novel biogel dressing.

Having run two half-marathons before, Dr. Ramos says she has always wanted to participate in the Boston Marathon. She has been training hard and has enjoyed getting to know her teammates.

“Boston is a special city to me,” Dr. Ramos says. “This marathon opportunity is dear to my heart. The support I have received from family, friends, the hospital, colleagues, and complete strangers has been amazing.”

– Kim H.

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