Canadian Fellowship Programs

MIGS Fellowship Program of the Month - February 2019

Fellowship in Advanced Pelvic Surgery

Mount Sinai Hospital – University of Toronto

Established October 2016



Past Fellows

Jessica Papillon-Smith  (2016-2018)

Residency – McGill University

Completed a Masters in Education (Johns Hopkins University)

Currently Staff at McGill University

Lea Luketic  (2016)

Residency – McMaster University

Completed a Masters in Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (Queens University)

Currently Staff St. Joseph’s Hospital, McMaster University

​Current Fellows

Ari Sanders  (2017-2019)
Residency – University of Calgary
Masters in Science System Leadership & Innovation (IHPME, Toronto)
Upon graduating – return to University of Calgary

Andrew Zakhari   (2018-2020)

Residency – McGill University

Masters in Global Surgery (University in British Columbia)

Upon graduating – hopes to return to Montreal


Incoming Fellows

Wilson Ventura Chan   (2019-2021)

Residency – University of Calgary

Darl Edwards   (2019-2021)

Residency – University of Toronto

Our program in Advanced Pelvic Surgery at Sinai Health System and Women’s College Hospital is a relatively young program that began as a 1-year fellowship in 2016 and has evolved into a 2-year curriculum now consisting of 2 junior fellows and 1 senior fellow. Our goal is to provide our fellows with the knowledge and skills to advanced women’s health, focusing on surgical expertise and academic potential. For this reason, we have expanded the program to allow for further professional growth. Each fellow typically spends 3-4 days per week in the operating room, and 1-2 days in the office or dedicated to protected research time.

They are exposed to a wide range of reproductive pathology as a result of our 7 fellowship-trained faculty who have varying clinical and research interests – which include surgical and non-surgical therapies focusing on deeply infiltrating endometriosis, AUB, uterine fibroids, pelvic pain and neuropelveology (the only site in Canada), low grade reproductive cancers, invasive placentation (greatest number of cases at a single center in Canada), Müllerian anomalies and Pediatric Gynaecology. 

There is no shortage of surgical volume – we have two neighbouring sites: Mount Sinai Hospital and Women’s College Hospital (WCH).  WCH is the first and only independent, academic ambulatory care hospital in Ontario with a primary focus on the health of women. During the first year, our fellows attend specialty clinics approximately once a week. During the second year, they are given more responsibility and act as independent clinicians, with a fellow clinic that is held twice monthly, and a day in the OR where they are the most responsible person. We are in the process of developing more organized elective time during their second year, tailored to their needs and interest.

The goal of our fellowship is to train leaders and academics in gynecology.  We place significant emphasis on protected time for academic activities (masters coursework and research endeavors).  In the short time since our fellowship was established, we have seen tremendous growth and development. We are proud of our fellows and their accomplishments. With ongoing guidance and mentorship from our faculty, our fellows have presented and published quality and original research. As a result, they have been recognized nationally and internationally for their work.  Our fellows have also engaged in leadership and advocacy work with CanSAGE and SOGC. 

Fellows’ Academic Productivity since Fellowship Established (2016)

  • 9 National or International Research Awards

  • 35 presentations at National or International Conferences

  • 16 peer-review publications

    • 7 in journals with impact factor >4.5 (eg. CMAJ, Fertil Steril, Green J)

    • 7 in journals with impact factor 3-4.5 (eg. JMIG, surgical endoscopy)

    • 2 in JOGC



  • Best Video Abstract. Removing IUD in pregnancy.  AAGL Hysteroscopy summit (Ari - July 2018)

  • Best Video Abstract. Hysterscopic Repair of Caesarean Scar Isthmocele. Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada – 74th Annual Clinical & Scientific Conference, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. (Ari – June 2018)

  • Best Video Abstract Presentation. Managing the Adherent Bladder at the Time of Total Laparoscopic Hysterectomy. Canadian Society for the Advancement of Gynecologic Excellence – 2nd Annual Conference. Montreal, (Jessica – September 2017)

  • People’s Choice Award – Best Overall Project. Canadian OBGYN Residents: Are They Ready for Independent Practice? S National Survey of Graduating Residents– 2nd Annual Conference. Montreal QC. (Jessica- September 2017)

  • Top 5 Oral Presentation. Canadian OBGYN Residents: Are They Ready for Independent Practice? S National Survey of Graduating Residents– 2nd Annual Conference. Montreal, QC.  (Jessica – September 2017)

  • Best of Three Video Presentation. Vasopressin in Gynecological Procedures. Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada – 73rdAnnual Clinical & Scientific Conference. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.(Jessica – June 2017

  • Best of Three Video Presentation. Cystoscopy In A World Without Indigo Carmine. Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada - 72nd Annual Clinical & Scientific Conference. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Lea – June 2016)

  • Best of Five Video Presentation. Cesaerean Scar Pregnancy. 1st Annual Canadian Symposium on Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Lea – April 2016)

  • Best of Three Oral Presentation. Does Ulipristal Acetate Objectively Affect Surgical Experience at Laparoscopy Myomectomy. 1st Annual Canadian Symposium on Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Lea – April 2016)