Pierre Azzam, M.D.

Pierre Azzam

Adjunct Faculty

Education

I received my B.A. with a concentration in Biology, Psychology from Rice University in Houston, Texas and my M.D. from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.

Biography

I am an academic psychiatrist with sub-specialization in psychosomatic medicine, the interface of psychiatry and other medical disciplines. After completing fellowship in 2010, I served as the Director of Resident Education in Psychosomatic Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. In January 2012, I took on the position of Chief of Psychiatry Consultation and Emergency Services for the VA Boston Healthcare System. In addition to psychopharmacology and medical education, my interests lie in behavioral neurology, clinical neuroscience, and palliative care medicine.

Question and Answers

Q: Please describe theoretical orientation and your teaching philosophy

A: I believe we all learn best when information is tied to practical, real-world applications and when knowledge is associated with laughter and joy (limbic learning). As such, I strive to make teaching as interactive, practical, and enjoyable as possible.

Q: Why did you choose to enter the field of psychiatry?

A: During medical training, I considered pursuing various medical and surgical specialties and found that, in each, I was most excited by the affective, behavioral, and cognitive disturbances that impacted patient care. Naturally, psychiatry and the subspecialty of psychosomatic medicine fit my interests in bringing the brain to the hospital bedside.

Q: What do you enjoy most about teaching in the MHCBM Program?

A: This is my first semester teaching in the program. I am most looking forward to teaching students with various academic interests who have had different levels of exposure to psychopharmacology.

 

Memberships

  • Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine
  • American Association of Directors of Psychiatric Residency Training

Select Recent Presentations

Brown J, Gopalan P, Aquino P, Azzam PN (November 2012). Psychiatrist as physician first: the physical examination in psychosomatic medicine. Symposium presented at Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine Annual Conference, Atlanta, GA.

Brown J, Azzam PN, Aquino P, Aggarwal R, Fisher T, Pacheco M (November 2012). The ABCs of Starting a Service: Administration, Business, and Change. Workshop presented at Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine Annual Conference, Atlanta, GA.

Puri NV, Gopalan P, Azzam PN (February 2013). Increasing interest in psychosomatic medicine through an interest group. Poster presented at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center GME Leadership Conference, Pittsburgh, PA.

Gopalan P, Azzam PN, Travis MJ (March 2013). Longitudinal interdisciplinary neuroscience curriculum for psychiatry residents. Poster presented at American Association of Directors of Psychiatry Residency Training Annual Conference, Fort Lauderdale, FL.

Teaching

  • 2008-2009: Visiting Instructor of Psychology, University of Pittsburgh School of Arts and Sciences
  • 2010-2013: Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
  • 2013-Present: Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
  • 2013-Present: Clinical Instructor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

Select Publications

Azzam PN, Alam A. Pain in the ICU: A psychiatric perspective. Journal of Intensive Care Medicine 2012; 26(6): 1-11. doi: 10.1177/0885066611432417. Published electronically before print.

Azzam PN, Gopalan P. Prototypes of catatonia: diagnostic and therapeutic challenges in the general hospital. Psychosomatics 2013; 54:88-93.

Gopalan P, Azzam PN, Hudak R. Pramipexole-induced obsessive-compulsive symptoms in a patient with Parkinson’s disease and disgust sensitivity. Psychosomatics 2013; 54:286-289.