Marla Dubinsky, MD
Dr. Marla Dubinsky
What motivated you to specialize
I was inspired by inflammatory bowel disease patients and wanted to be able to be involved in a research field where there are more questions than answers.
My Personal Motto:
Lead by example
and inspire others.
What is the greatest challenge many
of your patients with UC face?
People living with UC accept a new reality, settling for long periods of symptoms. We have a responsibility to partner with patients, empowering them to achieve their goals – whether it’s being able to eat what they want, skydive or ski on their holiday – and give them hope.
Number of countries visited:
Visiting the gorillas in Rwanda.
In treating patients with UC,
what is your biggest challenge?
We still don’t know what causes UC – we know there is an interplay between genetic susceptibility, the bacteria living in the gut and environmental factors, but we don’t understand any of these contributors well enough. So, while treatment options exist, I still don’t have a cure that I can offer my patients.
What advice would you give a person
living with UC?
If you’re experiencing UC symptoms, you are not in remission. You don’t have to accept a new reality that involves multiple trips to the bathroom or a constant degree of abdominal pain. By working with your physician and together formulating a disease management plan, it should be possible to make your days better.
Beyond a cure, what is your number
one wish for the UC community?
Greater access to a multidisciplinary team (MDT). Many patients suffer for a long time before they’re diagnosed and face all sorts of challenges. Co-management ensures they get what they need, because at that stage, they don’t know what they need. And people continue to need that ancillary support in the longer term – for nutrition, pregnancy, emotions, etc.