Leighton Forrester MD

By MedStar Health

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Cardiology
Start Date: 1989

LIFE AND MEDICINE INTERTWINED FROM THE BEGINNING

MedStar Washington Hospital Center has played an integral role in the milestones that have shaped my life and career. When I was a young boy, my first memories of the Hospital Center were waiting eagerly to pick up my mom who worked as a registered nurse.

I had several encounters with the Emergency Department, including one for a broken arm. At eleven, I was taken to the hospital again because of swollen lymph nodes. There was some concern that I might have had Hodgkin's disease and luckily, it turned out I did not. While being tested, I met a hematologist, Lawrence Pierce, MD, who made a wonderful impression on me as one of the kindest and gentlest doctors I had ever met. He was a great role model for me because I had wanted to become a physician from early childhood.

Some 16 years later, during my Hospital Center residency, I was privileged to run into Dr. Pierce and work with him. It was great to see him and see how he was still such a caring physician.

My connection to the Hospital Center continued, when in 1995 I was on call as a cardiology fellow, and I met a nurse who would eventually become my wife. Although she had to move back to California that very week, we maintained a long-distance relationship for three years and married in 1998. After she moved to the Washington area, David Downing, MD, was her OB/GYN and he delivered both our baby girls - at the Hospital Center, of course!

Looking back, the Hospital Center has been an amazing part of my life. It's not only where my family receives care, it's primarily where I provide care as a cardiologist. I am happy and proud to be a part of the history of such a wonderful organization.