Jan. 11, 2022

Former engineer joins cardiac anesthesia team

Dr. Michael Gysel attracted by challenge of operating room
Dr. Michael Gysel
Dr. Michael Gysel Dr. Michael Gysel

Dr. Michael Gysel, MD, recently joined the Libin Cardiovascular Institute’s cardiac anesthesia team.

After a year away for training, Gysel is pleased to be returning to the University of Calgary, where he completed his anesthesiology residency and got to know—and respect—the cardiac anesthesia team.

“I feel extremely lucky to have a job in the cardiac group here in Calgary,” says Gysel. “The team were incredible mentors to me throughout my training,” says Gysel.

He is particularly drawn to cardiac anesthesiology because of the collaborative approach required for cardiac surgery.

“Everyone is a critical part of the team,” he says. “As the anesthesiologist, you make a lot of important decisions in dynamic situations. It’s challenging and engaging.”

Gysel recently completed a fellowship in Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, where he cared for complex cardiothoracic surgical and medical patients.

“It was a great experience,” he says. “Duke has a high volume of thoracic transplant patients and we also managed a lot of mechanical circulatory support. I’m hoping this experience will contribute to our management of patients in Calgary.”

Although he was always interested in medicine, Gysel hadn’t planned on it as a career. In fact, he first studied electrical engineering at the University of Alberta with a biomedical specialization; an experience that translates well to his research interests.

Specifically, he is attracted to applying patient data to machine learning algorithms, with the goal of improved clinical decision-making. During his fellowship, he was part of a team that used machine learning models to predict the risk of patient readmission and complications after cardiac surgery.

“In the future, I think these models will play a critical role in clinical decision-making.” says Gysel.

He is now doing similar work in Calgary alongside colleagues and is excited about the promise this technology holds.

Gysel is an assistant professor in the Department of Cardiac Sciences at the University of Calgary.