#129: Same Surgeon, Different Light: Dr. Sharon Ben-Or

March 17, 2022

In this episode, Dr. David Tom Cooke interviews Dr. Sharon Ben-Or—the first female President of the Eastern Cardiothoracic Surgical Society. This inspirational leader shares remarkable, thought-provoking details about her journey into medicine. She credits her uncle with opening her eyes to the possibility of medical school. Listeners will learn that while on a family trip, Dr. Ben-Or skipped the skiing and spent the day with her uncle who was studying for the MCAT. Why cardiothoracic surgery? A clerical error, she explains. When considering a surgical subspecialty, Dr. Ben-Or was interested in the pancreas and liver, so she “signed up” for surgical oncology. But someone mixed up the paperwork, and she ended up on the thoracic oncology rotation. “I loved it,” she said. Dr. Ben-Or also generously shares how her 2017 breast cancer diagnosis “completely changed” her approach to patients and helped her better understand and empathize with patients’ feelings of fear and anger. She is in the process of rebuilding her life—"a new life”—because “so many things have changed.” Don’t miss the stories, experiences, and valuable advice from this leading light in cardiothoracic surgery. Same Surgeon, Different Light” is a program from the Society designed to demystify cardiothoracic surgery, revealing the men and women behind their surgical masks.