In Canada, arthritis is the highest cause of disability in women, second highest in men, and total annual costs approach $33 billion. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most prevalent form of arthritis, and knee OA affects almost 40% of North Americans. The knee is comprised of both the tibiofemoral (TF) joint and the patellofemoral (PF) joint – or 'knee cap' – and the PF joint is a substantially under-recognized cause of pain and disability. A predominant theory for both onset and progression of knee OA relates to biomechanics, specifically abnormal alignment at the knee cap. Here at UBC I have access to the only stand-up MRI scanner being used worldwide for research purposes, so my project involves measuring alignment of the knee in people with OA while both standing and squatting, two tasks that are clinically known to be both painful and challenging for people with knee OA.
What do you hope to accomplish with your research?
I aim to further elucidate the role of alignment at the patellofemoral joint in both the onset and progression of knee OA, and more specifically, patellofemoral OA.
What are your future career goals?
I aim to build a career in research that capitalizes on my experience as a clinician and also gives me continuous opportunities to both learn and share/teach.
Why did you decide to study at UBC?
I specifically contacted Professor Karim Khan, a world renowned researcher in the physiotherapy and sports medicine fields, which led me to pursue my studies here. In fact, I am pursuing a joint-PhD through the Universitas 21 program, and am therefore a student at both UBC and the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. The U21 program is a fantastic way to explore international collaborations and to learn from diverse research groups.
What has been your most memorable Vancouver experience so far?
I have lived in other countries and travelled the world, and always enjoy coming home to Vancouver. My community here supports me in living a life where I have freedom of expression and freedom to chase my dreams.
Personal Interests / Hobbies
I enjoy rock climbing, active commuting (cycling), play the electric bass, and occasionally volunteer with large scale collaborative art installations for international festivals.