Salim Hommeida, M.D.

What attracted you to pediatric gastroenterology?

During my clinical rotations, I enjoyed all the clinical exposure I received but found myself most attracted to pediatric gastroenterology more than any other subspecialty.

I was impressed by the pediatric gastroenterologists. Besides being committed to offering patients the best care possible, they were knowledgeable, skilled and able to solve complex problems in a systemic and methodical manner.

The challenge of puzzling over each case in order to localize the lesion and make a final diagnosis as well as the ability to alleviate a patient's suffering captivated me, as it reflects a big part of my character that loves problem-solving and helping others.

After taking care of patients with gastrointestinal disease and being able to perform endoscopies, my passion for gastroenterology has strengthened. I learned that a wide spectrum of gastrointestinal complaints like constipation, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and eosinophilic esophagitis might have a negative impact on the lifestyle of the patient, and how much a difference the gastroenterologist can make in the patient's life after diagnosing the condition and taking the appropriate steps to manage it.

Pursuing a career in pediatric gastroenterology will help me achieve my personal life goals. It will help me make a difference and prevent illnesses, disabilities and suffering. Finally, it will help me lighten the path of humanity and make huge steps in the field of medicine through research.

What attracted you to Mayo Clinic for fellowship training?

I have been inspired to continue my education in pediatric gastroenterology in a strong fellowship program with the hope of providing distinctive care, receiving intellectual motivation, building lifelong friendships, and using the knowledge I acquire to heal children and train others interested in the field.

Mayo Clinic is recognized internationally for its research and unique patient care. I was impressed by the friendly and professional environment at Mayo Clinic. The wide variety of cases will ensure adequate exposure to develop my clinical and procedural skills.

The opportunity to pursue a master's degree in research and the ability to perform clinical and basic science research will help me contribute to the exciting and rapidly growing field of pediatric gastroenterology research.

How is your fellowship at Mayo Clinic going?

I am pleased to have joined this program. I am impressed by the consultants and staff members. In addition to being knowledgeable, they are friendly and professional. They have offered me all the assistance and support I have needed. Throughout my clinical and research rotations, I have been provided with excellent mentorship.

I have had a chance to focus on my primary interest in esophageal disease by participating in clinical studies and working in the multidisciplinary aerodigestive and eosinophilic esophagitis clinics.

Did anything surprise you about Mayo's program?

I was surprised by how well Mayo Clinic is organized despite being a huge institution. Everything runs smoothly and efficiently.

As far as the Pediatric Gastroenterology Fellowship is concerned, I was surprised by the available clinical and research opportunities. The fellows will have the opportunity to pursue a diploma or master's degree in clinical research. The clinical experience and number of procedures that fellows perform will qualify them to excel in the field of pediatric gastroenterology.

What is living in Rochester, Minnesota, like for you?

Rochester is a nice city. It has many parks and recreation facilities. It features four distinct seasons, which helps one enjoy nature and different indoor and outdoor activities. The people are friendly and hospitable.

May 17, 2016