Meet the Speakers

  • Martin Birchall, UK

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    Martin is one of the leading Academic Otolaryngologists in the world, one of the leading academic surgeons in Europe and an international figure in the field of translational regenerative medicine. His work is dedicated to the successful translation of innovative technologies, especially in the field of stem cells and regenerative medicine, with a focus on alleviating suffering and improving the quality of life for those with disorders of the head and neck, voice and swallowing. He aims to achieve these aims through forming partnerships with the very best scientists and surgeons in the appropriate fields. These multidisciplinary teams focus on clear therapeutic targets. He has supervised 9 PhD and 5 MD students, raised over £4 million in peer-reviewed grant money, including from MRC, NIH and Wellcome Trust (nearly £2 million held presently) and has published 130 peer-reviewed scientific papers plus numerous reviews and reports. He is Director of UCL Partners ENT Programme and was named Morgan Stanley Briton of the Year in 2008.

  • Tetsuji Sanuki

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    Prof. Tetsuji Sanuki graduated from Ehime University and spent his fellowship at Isshiki clinic Kyoto Voice Surgery Center with Emeritus Professor Nobuhiko Isshiki. He has been an Associate Professor of the Department of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, since 2017. He is a member of the Oto-Rhino-Laryngological Society of Japan, the Japanese Broncho-Esophagological Society, the Japanese Society of Logopedics and Phoniatrics and the Association for research in Otolaryngology. Dr. Sanuki’s major interest is in phonosurgery, particularly in frame-work surgery.
    Dr. Sanuki’s current work involves the development and testing of a medical device (titanium bridges) used in a surgical approach (type 2 thyroplasty) for adductor spasmodic dysphonia. Part of this work involved him leading a clinical trial from 2014 to 2017 in order to gain approval for the device to be covered under the Japan national health insurance system. In addition, Dr. Sanuki has been active in spreading type 2 thyroplasty outside of Japan, and is a frequent lecturer at many conferences and workshops. Domestically, Dr. Sanuki is pioneering the development of a registry for spasmodic dysphonia, which employs a series of diagnostic criteria.

  • Markus Hess

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    Markus Hess, MD, is a dedicated otolaryngologist and phoniatrician. After chairing a university
    phoniatrics department for 20 years he founded a Voice Clinic (Deutsche Stimmklinik, 2014). His activities focus
    exclusively on clinical laryngology, phonosurgery, and cutting edge research. Many of his clinical procedures are
    office-based using transnasally routed channeled flexible endoscopes, where glass fibres with 300 to 400
    microns enable interventions with the new blue laser at 445nm. Markus Hess is a devoted teacher and active in
    many international societies.

  • Albert Merati

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    Dr. Merati is an internationally recognized leader in Laryngology.  Following medical school at the University of Washington under Charlie Cummings, he completed his Otolaryngology training at the UCSD, including one year of NIH research training.  From there, Dr. Merati went to Vanderbilt to study Laryngology with Dr. Robert Ossoff at the premier training institution for academic laryngologists. This time at Vanderbilt also included work with Dr. Jim Netterville on laryngeal framework surgery.  Following very productive years at the University of Kansas and at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Dr. Merati returned to his native Seattle to head up the Laryngology program at the University of Washington, now widely recognized among the leaders in clinical care, scholarship, and training in the nation.   He has over 110 peer reviewed publications and also is the lead editor for the Textbook of Laryngology. Dr. Merati has served as Senior Examiner for the American Board of Otolaryngology and also on the Councils of the Triological Society and the American Broncho-Esophagological Association.  Dr. Merati has earned two Distinguished Service awards from the American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery and currently serves the executive committee of the AAOHNS in the role of President-Elect.  Dr. Merati is also the President-Elect of the American Broncho-Esophagological Association. 

  • Sam Majumdar

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    Sam Majumdar is a Consultant Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeon and Laryngologist at the Academic Department of Otolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery at Ninewells Hospital and Medical School Dundee. He is a Hon. Senior Lecturer of Dundee Medical School and has been a Regional Surgical Advisor for the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh for 4 years. He is also an associate of the Faculty of Surgical trainers of this college. Sam graduated in Medicine from Nottingham Medical School. He also did a research degree looking at the expressions of tumour suppressor genes. He was previously trained as a registrar in maxillofacial surgery in the South Yorkshire region and had obtained a Fellowship of the Faculty of Dental Surgery of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. Sam had his surgical training in Nottingham, Derby, Doncaster and Sheffield under some renowned Laryngologist, Head & Neck and Paediatric Surgeons like Patrick Bradley, Julian McGlashan, Sean Mortimore, Mark Watson, Andrew Parker and Peter Bull. Since moving in Dundee, he has developed Specialist Voice and Swallowing Disorder service at Ninewells Hospital Dundee. His main interest is laryngology, neurolaryngology, difficult airway, pharyngeal and swallowing disorders. He runs weekly voice and swallowing disorder clinics and operating lists. He also specialises in paediatric voice pathology. His research interest is Laryngopharyngeal Reflux and Laryngeal microenvironment. He has written chapters in textbooks and published papers in peer reviewed journals. He is a passionate believer unified approach to the management of disorders and diseases of the upper aerodigestive tract.

  • Kate Heathcote

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    Kate has been a consultant Laryngologist at Poole Hospital Foundation Trust on the South Coast of England since 2013. As fellow to Prof Jean Paul Marie in Rouen, France, she learnt techniques of laryngeal reinnervation which she has continued to develop, research and introduce into the UK. A further laryngology fellowship at the RNTNE focused on airway procedures with Guri Sandhu and Phonosurgery with John Rubin.  She has a comprehensive NHS laryngology service in Poole offering a Laryngology Treatment Clinic and Voice Clinic. She is working at disseminating good practice and educational content via the BLA.

  • Alexander Gelbard M.D.

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    Alexander Gelbard M.D.

    Dr. Gelbard is a board certified Otolaryngologist at Vanderbilt University specializing in adult laryngeal and tracheal disease. He completed his undergraduate education at Stanford University, and his medical school in New Orleans at the Tulane School of Medicine. He completed internship and residency at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston Texas. Dr Gelbard completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Immunology at the MD Anderson Cancer Center as well as a clinical fellowship in Laryngeal Surgery at Vanderbilt School of Medicine. Dr. Gelbard has authored numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters and lectures internationally on adult airway disease. He currently is Co-director of the Vanderbilt Center for Aerodigestive health, Principle investigator of an externally funded (PCORI) prospective multi-institutional study of adult airway disease, and director of the multi-institutional North American Airway Collaborative (NoAAC).

  • Sulica Lucian

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    Lucian Sulica, M.D. is the Sean N. Parker Professor of Laryngology in the Department of
    Otolaryngology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, where he has been a faculty
    member since 2006. He is the founding Director of the Sean Parker Institute for the Voice.
    Dr. Sulica completed his undergraduate studies at Dartmouth College, and his medical studies
    at Georgetown University in Washington, DC.

    His practice is limited to voice disorders. He has a special interest in medical and microsurgical
    treatment of injuries of the vocal fold from voice use, particularly in performers, and in
    neurologic voice disorders, including vocal fold paralysis and paresis, spasmodic dysphonia and
    tremor. Dr. Sulica has also been a leader in the development of procedures for the treatment of
    voice disorders in the office, without the need for general anesthesia.

    Dr. Sulica's research and clinical investigations have been devoted to establishing clear,
    evidence-driven principles for the treatment of voice conditions. Dr. Sulica has authored more
    than 80 journal articles and 30 book chapters, and has edited two books, Vocal Fold Paralysis
    and Classics in Voice and Laryngology. He is as passionate about teaching as he is about
    clinical care and research, and has lectured extensively in the United States and abroad.
    Dr. Sulica has served as Secretary of the American Laryngological Association since 2014, ,
    and is a member of the American Bronchoesophagological Society, and the American
    Laryngologic, Rhinologic and Otologic Society (the Triologic Society).

  • Declan Costello, UK

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    Declan Costello is a Consultant Ear Nose & Throat Surgeon at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham. Having completed a degree in music at St John’s College, Cambridge (where he was a choral scholar), he trained in medicine at Imperial College. His specialist ENT training was undertaken in Oxford, and he undertook fellowships in London and Brighton. His clinical work is largely focused on laryngology, with a particular interest in medialisation injection under local anaesthetic, and on the care of professional voice users.

  • Guri Sandhu, UK

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    Guri Sandhu is a Consultant Otolaryngologist and Head & Neck Surgeon at Imperial College and The Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospitals in London, with honorary contracts at The Royal Brompton, University College and St Bartholomew’s Hospitals. He is an Honorary Senior Lecturer at Imperial College and University College London. Mr Sandhu graduated from the University of London in 1990 having trained in Medicine at The Royal London Hospital. As a Registrar he trained in ENT at The Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital and in Paediatric ENT at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. Mr Sandhu is a Laryngologist with a special interest in laryngotracheal stenosis but also manages voice and swallowing disorders. He has experience in performing the full spectrum of endoscopic and open surgical procedures on the larynx, pharynx and airway. Many of these procedures he has pioneered himself. He lectures nationally and internationally on these subjects and has an active research programme. He was responsible for setting up The National Centre for Airway Reconstruction in London which comprises a multidisciplinary team of specialists with an interest in airway problems. This unit has treated the largest number of adult patients with laryngotracheal stenosis in Europe.

BLA Secretariat: British Laryngological Association, c/o ENT UK, The Royal College of Surgeons of England, London, 35-43 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London,
WC2A 3PE, Email: enquiries@britishlaryngological.org, Registered charity England and Wales (1151517)