Dr. Yosef Legesse Debele, MD (Ethiopia)

Mentor: Dr. Jacek Szepietowski, MD

Wroclaw, Poland. 2018

For ISD mentorship awardee Dr. Yosef Legesse Debele of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, traveling more than 3,000 miles to Poland for a three-month dermatosurgery fellowship was well worth the trip. Training with mentor Prof. Dr. Jacek C. Szepietowski in the Department of Dermatology, Venereology, and Allergology at Wroclaw Medical University in Wroclaw, Poland, Dr. Yosef had the opportunity to expand his knowledge of dermatosurgery and enhance his surgical skills.

Dr. Yosef observed and assisted in the dermatosurgery outpatient clinic on a daily basis, including during pre-operative preparation, in the operating theater, and assisting with the post-operative care of surgical patients. He encountered a wide range of patients undergoing surgical procedures, including those with non-melanoma skin cancers, benign tumors, hidradenitis suppurativa, rhinophyma, nail disorders, and surgical scar revision. In the case of hidradenitis suppurativa, Dr. Yosef gained enormous experience in its surgical management, as this particular clinic is the only referral center in Poland that treats advanced cases.

In addition, Dr. Yosef also had the opportunity to be trained in cryosurgery, electrosurgery and cutaneous laser surgery for non-aesthetic purposes. Through a special arrangement made by Prof. Szepietowski, he also was trained in Mohs micrographic surgery at Bieniek Medical Center in Wroclaw.

Other highlights of his mentorship experience included observing the workings of the clinical trial unit, mycology laboratory, and immunofluorescence lab where Dr. Yosef gained new insights into the field of general dermatology. During breaks in his daily training, Dr. Yosef found Wroclaw to be a marvelous city to explore -- complete with a spectacular view, mouthwatering traditional Polish food, and the most welcoming people.

Upon returning to Ethiopia, Dr. Yosef is looking forward to establishing a dermatosurgery unit within the Department of Dermatovenereology at the College of Health Sciences, School of Medicine, at Addis Ababa University. He plans to offer enhanced surgical training for dermatology residents and undergraduate students and to provide quality dermatologic care. He also aspires to start a fellowship in dermatosurgery.

“I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to Prof. Jacek C. Szepietowski, the most considerate person, and his colleagues for being my mentors and making my stay fruitful and worthwhile.” -- Dr. Yosef Legesse Debele

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