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About Sickkids
About SickKids

Joel Fish, MD, FRCS(C)

The Hospital for Sick Children
Medical Director Burn Program
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery

University of Toronto
Associate Professor
Surgery


Phone: 416-813-7654 Ext. 228198
Fax: 416-813-8502
Email: joel.fish@sickkids.ca
Alternate Contact: Research Contact - Jennifer Zuccaro
Alternate Phone: 416-813-7654 Ext. 203018
Alternate Email: jennifer.zuccaro@sickkids.ca

Brief Biography

Dr. Joel Fish specializes in burns and complex wound care and is currently is the Medical Director of the Burn Program at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. He is a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and holds the position of Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Toronto.

Fish completed Medical School at McMaster University before beginning his training in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the University of Toronto. Following residency, Fish completed a “Travelling Burn Fellowship” program that took him to burn centers in Seattle, Boston, and San Antonio. In 1998, Fish was appointed Medical Director of the adult Burn Program at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (Ross Tilley Burn Centre) and held this role for over ten years. During his time at Sunnybrook, Fish treated many patients who had experienced electrical injuries and developed a clinical research program focused on understanding how these injuries are related to muscle fatigue, psychological changes, and pain control.

Fish joined the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Hospital for Sick Children in 2007 and served as the Research Director for the Division from 2007-2014. In 2009, Fish was appointed Medical Director of the Burn Program. SickKids has the largest paediatric burn program in Canada with more than 300 new patients treated each year. In addition, it is the only paediatric burn program in Canada that has been verified by the American Burn Association. Fish's clinical practice focuses on the treatment of pediatric burn injuries, and includes the full continuum from the acute injury, rehabilitation, and secondary reconstruction when needed. Fish also specializes in treating severe complex wound conditions from a variety of other causes.

In addition to his clinical role at SickKids, Fish is a member of the Institute of Medical Science at the University of Toronto and currently supervises several graduate students. At present, his research team is focused on evaluating the effectiveness of laser therapy to improve burn scars in children. In addition, the team is also working on several other projects to investigate objective scar measures and develop patient-reported outcome tools for children with scars.

 

Degrees 
B.Sc: Physiology & Anatomy; University of Toronto, 1982 MSc: Community Health, University of Toronto, 1982
MD: Faculty of Medicine, McMaster University, 1986

Residency
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery; University of Toronto, 1989-1994

Fellowships
Travelling Burn Fellowship; University of Toronto, 1995-1996

Certifications 
Fellow (Plastic Surgery) of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, 1994

Academic Positions 
Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto

Clinical Appointment 
Medical Director, Burn Program, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Hospital for Sick Children

Membership and Associations 

  • Ontario Medical Association
  • Ontario Society of Plastic Surgeons
  • Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
  • American Burn Association
  • American Society for Laser Medicine
  • Surgery Trauma Association of Canada

Research Interests

  • Wound healing
  • Post-burn pruritus 
  • Scar formation
  • Use of laser therapy for scar remodeling 

In addition, the team is also working on several other projects to investigate objective scar measures and develop patient-reported outcome tools for children with scars. 

For research inquiries, please contact Jennifer Zuccaro: 

Email: Jennifer.zuccaro@sickkids.ca;  Phone: 416-813-7654 Ext. 203018

Achievements

  • Ron Zuker Award, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Toronto, 2016.
  • Chair’s Award, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Toronto, 2014.
  • Inaugural Canadian Burn Care Physician Award, Shriners Burns Institute, United States, 2006.
  • Dr. Charles Tator Surgeon Scientist Mentoring Award, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, 2008.
  • Colin Woolf Award for Excellence in Course Coordination, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, 2008.
  • Best Pediatric Paper Award, “The construction and implementation of a novel post-burn pruritus scale for infants and children aged five years or less,” Shriners Burns Institute, United States, 2014.

Publications

  1. Zuccaro J, Ziolkowski N, Fish J. A Systematic Review of the Effectiveness of Laser Therapy for Hypertrophi Burn Scars. Clin Plast Surg. 44(4): 767-779 (2017).
  2. Wong B, Keilman J, Zuccaro J, Kelly C, Maynes JT, Fish J. Anesthetic practices for laser rehabilitation of pediatric hypertrophic burn scars. J Burn Care Res. 38(1): e36-e41 (2017).
  3. Catt CJ, Hamilton GM, J Fish, Mireskandari K, Ali A. Ocular manifestation of Stevens-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis in children. Am J of Ophthalmol. 166:68-75 (2016).
  4. Toor J, Crain J, Kelly C, Verchere C., Fish J. Pediatric burns from glass-fronted fireplaces in Canada: a growing issue over the past 20 years. J Burn Care Res. 37(5):483-88 (2016).
  5. Wibbenmeyer L, Gittelman MA, Kluesner K, Liao J, Xing Y, Faraklas I, Anyan W, Gamero C, Moulton S, Nederveld C, Banks A, Ryan CM, Conway JA, Reilly DA, Fish J, Kelly C, Peltier G., Schwantke E, Conrad PF, Caruso DM, Richey KJ, McCory K, Elfar MS, Pittinger T, Sadie C, Greenhalgh D, Palmieri T, Grossman PH, Richards KM, Joyce T, Pozez AL, Savetamal A, Harrington DT, Duncan K, Pomerantz WJ, Dillard BD. A multicenter study of preventable contact burns from glass fronted gas fireplaces. J Burn Care Res. 36(1):240-5 (2015).
  6. Evertt T, Parker K, Fish J, Pehora C, Budd D, Kelly C, Crawford M, Hayes J. The construction and implementation of a novel postburn pruritus scale for infants and children aged five years or less: introducing the Toronto Pediatric Itch Scale. J Burn Care Res. 36(1):44-9 (2015).
  7. Plant MA, Fish JS. Resident use of the Internet, e-mail, and person electronics in the care of surgical patients. Teach Learn Med. 27(2):215-23 (2015).
  8. Cross, K, Leonardi, L, Gomez, M, Friesen, J, Levasseur, M, Schattka, B, Sowa, M, Fish, J. Non Invasive Measurement of Edema in Partial Thickness Burn Wounds. J Burn Care Res. 30(5):807-17 (2009).
  9. Gomez M, Cartotto R, Knighton J, Smith K, Fish J. Improved Survival Following Thermal Injury in Adult Patients Treated at a Regional Burn Center. J Burn Care Res. 29(1):130-37 (2008).
  10. Theman K, Singerman J, Gomez M, Fish J. Return to work after low voltage electrical injury. J Burn Care Res. 29(6):959-64 (2008).