One thing Dr. Chris Doiron wants you to know about his practice: even though he is a busy surgeon, talking to patients about urologic pain conditions is still crucial. “With respect to my pain practice, one myth we’re always trying to debunk – and it is pervasive in the field – is that urologists don’t have time to treat pain conditions,” he explains. “True – these issues can take a lot of time, but I think it’s really important we take on this role because it’s very common and we, as clinicians, do have the skillsets to manage these patients effectively in the community. As urologists, we are well-positioned to have the knowledge and understanding of what these patients are going through and we ought to know how we can better help them.” Dr. Doiron expands on this and says, “We’re trying to do this in our communications, our guidelines and our presentations at conferences – better equip urologists to help patients with chronic pain conditions.”
Dr. Doiron is an assistant professor in the Department of Urology at Queen’s University in the Faculty of Health Sciences and an attending urologist at Kingston Health Sciences Centre (KHSC). He is in his fourth year of practice after joining SEAMO in July 2020. “I did my residency at Queen’s before completing a fellowship in genitourinary reconstruction at the University of Alberta with Dr. Keith Rourke. I came back to Queen’s to do a second fellowship in urologic chronic pelvic pain with Dr. J. Curtis Nickel. During those fellowship years I also completed a Masters of Public Health in Epidemiology at Harvard,” he describes.
Dr. Doiron’s clinical work focuses on the areas he studied in his fellowship. “My clinical practice is in urologic chronic pelvic pain, urologic reconstruction and general urology. My research focus is more in genitourinary pain,” he says. “I’m in clinic two full days a week and then I have an OR day and the other two days I spend teaching and doing research. It’s a nice mix and I really like that about my job – the variety.”
This variety is something SEAMO has afforded, Dr. Doiron explains. “Being a SEAMO member removes the constant pressure to bill clinical hours and allows us to focus on tasks that are remunerated poorly from an OHIP perspective, or not remunerated at all, like research, teaching and caring for patients with chronic conditions,” he says. “Some of the other benefits would be the unique funding opportunities SEAMO provides. Their fellowship grant helped fund my Queen’s fellowship year and I recently applied to their Innovation Fund as an early investigator. There are real benefits to being a SEAMO clinician scientist.”
Dr. Doiron’s clinical work takes him not only to KHSC, but abroad as well. “I’m going to the Philippines to do reconstructive urology work as I have an interest in global urology and building capacity in under-resourced settings.” On the research front, Dr. Doiron is excited for the future of his recent work with a basic scientist and immunologist at Queen’s, Dr. Tiziana Cotechini. “She and I have been working on exploring the inflammatory basis of interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome. We’ve been doing interesting work in that space, looking at the cause of this disease and we’re excited about some of our findings. We are hopeful this may lead to some novel, paradigm-shifting treatments,” he describes.