Meet Dr Suresh AVS
Dr Suresh AVS is a senior medical oncologist and a distinguished stem cell transplant expert, who studied at IMS-BHU, and has trained at AIIMS (New Delhi) and Kidwai Memorial Institute (Bangalore). He is a member of international cancer organizations such as ASCO, ESMO, ISO, and ICON.
Academic & Professional Achievements
Dr Suresh completed his basic medical degree and specialization in Internal medicine from the prestigious Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University (IMS- BHU) in 2003, with hematology as a sub-specialty, under the guidance of Prof VP Singh. This was followed by training in institutes of national repute, such as like AIIMS New Delhi and a super-specialty training at the acclaimed Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology, Bangalore, in 2007 with a special emphasis on stem cell transplants.
Presented with a wide range of career choices, thanks to an illustrious academic background, it was his keen interest in translation-research that led to his steep growth, both as a physician and a scientist.
This rare combination strengthened his unique patient-assesment methods, and helped him provide the latest treatment options applicable to each one of them. His wide experience of treating more than 5,000 cancer & blood-disorder patients every year for decades, has helped in sharpening his clinical acumen. He now enjoys spending time for mentoring and spreading his skill set and knowledge to a new breed of oncologists (Dr Suresh serves as an adjunct professor in many medical institutes).
With his core expertise in medical and hemato-oncology and a specialized interest in stem cell transplants, he has successfully performed 180 transplants over the last 15 years.
Aside from this, Dr Suresh's noteworthy achievements include:
- The first haplo translant of Andhra Pradesh
- The first GM CSF-induced transplant in India
He has also received multiple awards and felicitations from the international oncology community, including:
- Scholar in training award (by the American Association of Cancer Research, 2006)
- Young Oncologist (by the European Society of Medical Oncology - ESMO, 2007)
- The DST Grant (2008)
- Best Doctor Award (2010)
- Best Social Service (by The Rotary Club, 2012)
- Distinguished Researcher Award (JNIAS, 2013)
- Vaidya Ratna Award (2014)
- Distinguished Stem Cell Transplant Physician (2017)
Dr Suresh's zeal in cancer research extended beyond his clinical practice days, leading to the completion of more than 100 global research projects over the past decade, all of whom have been approved by regulatory bodies such as the EMA and the US FDA.
Dr Suresh has authored 186 articles and 6 textbook chapters on oncology.
He is an avid entrepreneur and philanthropist. He currently has 3 patents to his name - one for new molecules, and two for instruments. Aside from procising employment to over 850 families via 4 companies that he owns and manages, he also runs an NGO called "GRACE, FCG Freedom from Stoke", with a cause to 'alleviate human suffering'.
Note: The following is an interview with Dr Suresh, who advises patients for advanced cases of cancer, on Onco.com's network.
Tell us something that we don't know about you. The story behind the legend that you are?
I was born in 1977, in Khammam, to a middle-class family with traditional hindu values. It was a family of teachers - my father, Mr AV Ramana Murty was a teacher of physics, and my mother, Mrs K Subhadra taught Telugu.
I learned about basic human values and about supporting humanity with compassion, from my parents who always led by example. Thereon, I followed in the footsteps of my maternal uncle, Dr K Subrahmanyam on his principles of selflessness and helping those in need. My brother, with an M.Tech from IIT Bombay and a PhD from IIT Madras, has remained my best peer.
I'm married to Dr V Anuradha (a pathologist from OMC), who understands me well and has stood by me though ups and downs, in my journey of launching 8 firms that feed more than 850 families today. We are blessed with a daughter and two sons. My wife deserves huge credit for making up for my absence with the kids, by compensating for it with her affections.
Apart from medicine, I like cooking, playing football and squash, and I'm happy that a close-knit peer circle keeps my love for Telugu literature alive. Although my circle of friends is pretty compact, all my friends know me as an active, highly emotional and conversational man.
Why did you choose Medical Oncology as your specialization?
There were many factors that drove this decision, including my fascination with the concept of everyone's fundamental 'right to lead a decent life'. My mother, unfortunately, was diagnosed with a Thyroid malignancy. A desire to solve such situations, and with enough encouragement from Prof VP Singh, whose teaching skills had a lasting impact on me, led me to choose medical oncology.
What inspires you at work every day?
I draw a lot of strength from my morning prayers - the Sandhya Vandana, the Vishnu Sahasra Nama and Rudram. I also draw inspiration from people who have taught me, including the likes of Prof VP Singh, Prof KK Tripathi, from my alma mater (IMS BHU), from the loving thoughts that my family emanates - my eldest son, the encouragement from my better half... all of that contributes towards filling my day with unlimited energy.
In your opinion, what is the Indian cancer care landscape missing out on?
I think there's an acute shortage of inter/intra departmental coordination and organ-wise specializations. These the are two major lacuna. Aside from that, it seems as if everyone wants to practice everything- perhaps we need to learn from the west about how to remain focused (on specialties).
Can you share some tips to prevent cancer?
- Consume a low-fat, high-fiber diet
- Engage in regular aerobic exercises (minimum 35 minutes every day)
- Avoid alcohol
- Avoid smoking (both active and passive)
- Eliminate stress
- Avoid working at night
- Maintain optimum levels of Vitamin D and B12 (by getting adequte sun exposure, avoiding junk food and increasing the consumption of antioxidants)
- Participate in regular cancer screening programs
- Aim for early pregnancy and breastfeed babies (specific to women)