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  • Lucy De La Cruz
    January 20, 2022

    The renowned 39-year-old breast surgeon becomes youngest Latina woman to lead breast surgery program in U.S. at major academic medical center

    WASHINGTONLucy Maria De La Cruz, MD, has joined MedStar Georgetown University Hospital as chief of its Breast Surgery Program and director of the Betty Lou Ourisman Breast Health Center. Dr. De La Cruz is a fellowship-trained breast surgeon who specializes in advanced breast surgery procedures, including wireless lumpectomies, hidden scar technique, oncoplastic breast conservation, and nipple-sparing mastectomy. She has been published in more than two dozen peer-reviewed scientific journals, and her pivotal papers on nipple-sparing mastectomy and oncologic outcomes have been cited worldwide. She will also direct the hospital’s breast surgery fellowship program.

    Lucy De La Cruz

    “I am honored and excited to lead the breast surgery program and the Betty Lou Ourisman Breast Health Center at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital,” said De La Cruz. “It has been my life-long dream to bring my passion for medicine, helping others and building a state-of-the-art breast surgery program to advance breast health. I look forward to working with our multidisciplinary team of breast health experts to compassionately care for, educate and empower my patients in their health journey.”

    Dr. De La Cruz is an academic breast surgeon who conducts outcomes-focused research, and among her special interests are the impact of genomic mapping to guide breast cancer treatment and male breast cancer treatment. Her work is guided by a long-standing commitment to promoting equity and efficacy in breast cancer care delivery, using the principles of value-based health care.
      
    “The Betty Lou Ourisman Breast Health Center and MedStar Georgetown University Hospital are thrilled to have Dr. De La Cruz lead the breast surgery program. Her commitment to patients, their journey, and their outcomes are unmatched; and her expertise in novel surgical techniques brings new and beneficial options to patients,” said David H. Song, MD, MBA, FACS, Physician Executive Director, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, Professor and Chair Department of Plastic Surgery, and Interim Chair, Department of Surgery, Georgetown University School of Medicine.
     
    Dr. De La Cruz’s story

    Dr. De La Cruz, 39, started her journey towards becoming the youngest Latina woman to lead a breast cancer surgery program at a major academic medical center at young age. As the daughter of international physician researchers, she spent a lot of time in labs where her parents worked, sparking her passion for medicine and “making a difference in people’s lives.” She grew up in Cuba, Mozambique, Spain, and Miami.
     
    In college, she studied abroad in the Dominican Republic at the Universidad Central Del Este School of Medicine, where students were involved in patient care very early in their education and training. There, she completed her medical degree, founded an American Medical Student Association chapter and raised scholarship funds to help those who couldn’t afford tuition.

    After graduation, she was told becoming a surgeon would be nearly impossible as a foreign medical graduate and a female. Despite this, De La Cruz obtained research fellowships from the University of Miami and George Washington University in Washington, D.C. She continued her journey by obtaining a one-year residency internship at Jackson Memorial Hospital at the University of Miami, where she earned the Intern of the Year award and an AOA medical honor society membership for her dedication to medical student teaching. During her residency, she worked on an award-winning oncologic outcomes research project for nipple-sparing mastectomy that continues to be cited worldwide.
     
    That same year, Dr. De La Cruz started her breast surgery fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania. Following graduation, she worked in private practice for a year before returning to the University of Pennsylvania as a faculty member in the associate program director of the breast cancer surgery fellowship program.
     
    After relocating to Washington, D.C., to be close to her family, she founded the breast cancer fellowship program curriculum at the Inova Health System. Now at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and The Betty Lou Ourisman Breast Health Center, she continues to teach residents and fellows, pursue research, and care for patients – the fulfillment of her lifelong dream. 

    About MedStar Georgetown University Hospital

    About the Betty Lou Ourisman Breast Health Center


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  • January 05, 2017
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    There’s no disputing the proof that Michael Booth knows what he’s talking about when it comes to healthy eating.  His “before body,” one hundred pounds heavier than his “after body,” means he not only practices what he preaches and knows the best tips having tried them himself, but he also can empathize with patients struggling to become healthier by making better food choices. 

    The Howard graduate in Nutritional Sciences and registered dietician offers the following tips:

    1. Consult your doctor before beginning any new eating and exercise pattern.
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    3. Eat until satisfied and don’t stuff yourself past the point of fullness. If takes you about 20 minutes to recognize that you are getting full. Slow down, chew your food, and listen to your body. It will be your guide to determining just how much you should be eating.

    4. Often, portion control has more of an impact than changing the food you typically eat. When you go to a restaurant, for example, you can ask for half your portion as a meal and half to take home for another meal. Spreading your calories in 5-6 small meals throughout the day will keep you from overeating.  

    5. Do your research and learn how to choose healthy food. Fad diets aren’t made for long term results.  Instead, visit ChooseMyPlate.gov, which gives practical advice on how to portion what you eat to ensure adequate intake of macro- and micronutrients. “What helped me get where I wanted to be was learning the science behind what I was doing,” said Booth.

    6. Choose fresh and whole foods versus pre-packaged or fast food. One way to control ingredients is to cook at home, which can be made into a fun, family activity. This will help cut down on sugar, fat and salt intake which in excess can lead to the development of various chronic diseases.

    7. Cut down on sugar, fat and salt. Salt has an even greater negative effect on African-Americans, says Booth.

    8. Find opportunities to replace soda and juice with water. There are hidden calories in many drinks that can really increase your daily calorie count.

    9. Eat until satisfied, not full.

    10. Add exercise. According to the CDC, the general recommendation for most healthy adults is 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (i.e. briskly walking). Taking a walk with your kids benefits everyone’s hearts.

    11. Measure your progress, but do not be discouraged by the scale. The scale may not be changing, but as you increase your level of physical activity, you will likely be decreasing the amount of fat and increasing the amount of muscle stored on your body. In this case, it is a good idea to use a tape measure in combination with the scale to truly track your success.
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