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Division of Infectious Diseases

Division of Infectious Diseases

Division Director: Cassandra D. Salgado, M.D., MS
Division Administrator:
Rebekah Shinta, MHA

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Division of Infectious Diseases (ID) is a dynamic, multidisciplinary academic group which strives to provide the best medical care, educational opportunities, and clinical research in the region. Over the past several years, the faculty and staff have doubled in size, and we have expanded our clinical and research programs substantially. Our clinical and research strengths include nosocomial infections, HIV care, Hepatitis C, transplant ID, endocarditis, bone and joint infections, vascular line management, and ID global health.

Patient Care

The ID Division provides inpatient hospital consultations via three different faculty teams—A (the main University Hospital), B (Ashley River Tower and the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center), and C (solid organ transplant and hematologic malignancy complications). The Division also provides outpatient services for a variety of infectious diseases including unexplained fevers, surgical wound infections and abscesses, MRSA complications, endocarditis, sexually transmitted diseases, and hepatitis. These services are provided full-time (Monday through Friday) in the Rutledge Tower 7th Floor clinics. Specialized clinics are available for prosthetic joint infections (Camelia Marculescu, M.D., MSCR), Hepatitis C (Eric Meissner, M.D., Ph.D.), and transplant complications. A full range of Travel Medicine planning and prevention services are available (tropical medicine advice, vaccines, malaria prophylaxis, etc), at our convenient East Cooper clinic location in Mount Pleasant. 

MUSC provides comprehensive care to over 1,200 adults with HIV infection and services are available regardless of insurance or ability to pay. The program has received continuous Ryan White Part B funding since the inception of the Health Resources and Service Administration Ryan White programs over 20 years ago. Services for HIV-infected patients include access to AIDS Drug Assistance programs, mail-order pharmacy services, adherence services, mental health and addiction counseling, full OB/GYN and reproductive health services, and a Transition Clinic (for transitioning HIV-infected youth from pediatric to adult internal medicine services).   

The Infectious Diseases group at MUSC may be the only academic center in the United States where placement of peripherally inserted central catheters (PICCs) is routinely performed by specially trained ID-boarded physician operators. Catheters may be tunneled or non-tunneled, antibiotic-impregnated, and can be placed with ultrasound guidance for difficult cases including morbidly obese patients, those with immunocompromising conditions, or special needs such as long-term antibiotic infusions, parenteral nutrition, or chemotherapy

Research

The ID Division receives research funding from NIH, CDC, as well as pharmaceutical and biotech companies. Wei Jiang, M.D. has an R01-funded immunology laboratory investigating innate immunity, vaccine responsiveness, microbial translocation, and gender differences in HIV/AIDS and other chronic inflammatory conditions. Eric Messner, M.D., Ph.D. is involved in clinical management of Hepatitis C and HIV patients, and runs a laboratory exploring Hepatitis C innate immune control. Allison Eckard, M.D.'s research efforts investigate metabolic and inflammatory complications of HIV infection. John Gnann Jr., M.D. is focused on herpes viruses (HSV, VZV, CMV), encephalitis viruses, and other unusual viral pathogens in addition to HIV clinical trials. The faculty members conduct novel HIV clinical trials related to integrase inhibitors, co-formulations of highly active antiretroviral therapy, and special outcomes studies for women and renally impaired patients. Camelia Marculescu, M.D., MSCR has protocols relating to prosthetic joint infections. Collaborative studies are ongoing involving Immunology, Microbiology, Epidemiology, Pediatrics, Oncology, Orthopedics and other groups. 

Recently, Susan Dorman, M.D. joined the Division to expand the Infectious Diseases Global Health program, where valuable mentoring of trainees and junior faculty will be conducted. Her research, heavily funded by NIH and CDC focuses on the epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of tuberculosis. 

Education

In terms of education, the ID Division provides leadership for the training of medical students, residents, and a variety of other health care trainees. MUSC has an American Board of Internal Medicine GME-accredited Infectious Diseases Fellowship, directed by Cassandra D. Salgado M.D., M.S., which provides training in the breadth of inpatient and outpatient services and offers a variety of academic and research opportunities. In addition, MUSC is one of the few programs in the country to offer a fellowship for OB/GYN-trained physicians in Reproductive Infectious Diseases (with key mentoring from David Soper, M.D. and Gweneth Lazenby, M.D., Ph.D. in OB/GYN). These two fellowship programs foster cross-training while increasing opportunities for comprehensive care of patients with chronic infectious diseases. The ID Division participates in the general training of pharmacy students and residents, and there is also a PharmD ID residency program with expert mentoring provided by Stephanie Kirk, PharmD

The ID Division provides leadership for a variety of MUSC hospital services. Cassandra D. Salgado, M.D., M.S. and Scott Curry, M.D. lead a robust Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology program, recently recognized for very low vascular line infection rates and novel approaches to preventing nosocomial infections related to environmental surfaces. Scott Curry, M.D. has a combined clinical and research interest in the field of Clositridum difficile. His lab investigates the natural history of this organism in hospitalized patients as well as developing effective prevention and control measures. John Gnann Jr., M.D. directs the Antibiotic Stewardship Program, which strives for the safest and most cost-effective antimicrobial protocols and strategies. Amanda L. Parks, M.D. is actively developing a robust Tele ID program to improve the reach of new expertise in South Carolina. Robert Cantey, M.D. and Evgenia Kagan, M.D. manage the Vascular Access Program, supervising the placement of PICC lines and leading teaching efforts related to safe placement and management of vascular catheters. The Transplant ID Service (Jessica Lewis, M.D. and John Gnann Jr, M.D.) helps to coordinate services for hundreds of solid organs (heart, liver, kidney, lung) and stem cell transplant recipients each year.   

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