Christina Kim, M.D., FAAP
Christina Kim, M.D., FAAP
Christina Kim: My name is Christina Kim. I'm a pediatric urologist and I work here at Shriners Hospital. When you look at the program here at Shriners Hospital in Springfield, the urology program continues to build and grow. We offer a full service of pediatric urologic care.
To explain a little bit about the field of pediatric urology, it's a subspecialty of urology in general. So urology is the surgical care of genital urinary abnormalities. So basically it's taking care of things that have to do with the bladder, the kidneys and the genital system. We see patients who have simple urologic abnormalities such as patients who have conditions called hypospadias, patients who have undescended testicles, patients who need circumcisions, hernia repair. We also see patients who have urinary reflux where urine is going backwards up into their kidneys, kidney obstructions. The primary non-surgical urologic conditions are things that have to do with urinary control such as bedwetting or daily time urinary wetting as well as recurrent or repeated urinary tract infections.
What makes Shriners Hospital unique is the culture that it has. Not only as a national institution but also at the Springfield hospital itself. That culture of providing care regardless of the ability to pay really changes the entire experience for the patient as well as their family.
One thing I truly value as a mother myself is when people will take the time to talk to and listen to my child as a patient. So I always try and take that approach. If the child is old enough to engage in a conversation, I want to engage with them first. Get an understanding of what they're thinking, their appointment is about. Try and get at what might be concerning them, what might be making them nervous and how I can put them at ease. I have had some patients where there is something very specific that I fixed and it really improved the quality of life for that child and I know it was very impactful in a positive way for that child. I have also had patients where I have seen them for over 10 years and taking care of them from when they were too young to talk until now when they are young adults and able to have quite elaborate conversations with me and I can tell from both parent as well as from the child that my presence in their life was important. So that's something that is really ... That I'm truly grateful for, that I have the opportunity to do that as my "work".
I'm just really lucky. The old saying that if you love what you do you never work a day in your life, then it really doesn't feel like work when you can have those kind of positive interactions and a positive impact on someone's life.