Leadership

Leadership

Centre Co-Director

Dr. Pierre Guy

pierre.guy@ubc.ca
Clinic Office: 604-875-5809

Dr. Pierre Guy is Associate Professor and clinician-scientist at UBC Department of Orthopaedics, where he heads the Division of Orthopedic Trauma. He is the Centres’ Co-Director. His medical training and residency were completed at McGill University, followed by orthopaedic trauma fellowships in Hannover and Berlin, Germany and at UBC. Dr. Guy also holds a Master’s degree (MBA) from the John Molson School of Business, Concordia University. He is a practicing Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon at BC’s level 1 Trauma Centre, Vancouver General Hospital. He is a founding member of the Canadian Orthopedic Trauma Society and an active member of the Canadian Orthopedic Association and the Orthopedic Trauma Association.


Dr. Guy’s research is focused on hip, pelvis and acetabulum fracture prevention, treatment and post injury function. He collaborates with Mechanical, Electrical and Materials Engineers to evaluate the mechanism of fractures and imaging using novel techniques. He pursues clinical research trials and health services research, and collaborates with Government to realise Quality Improvement projects. He respectively co-leads the BC Hip Fracture Redesign project and the Canadian Hip Fracture Collaborative (Twitter: @HFStudy). His interdisciplinary team includes graduate students, clinical-residents, engineering trainees, epidemiologists, and biostatisticians.

Additional links to Dr. Guy's work:

Managing Director

Amber Stefanson

amber.stefanson@hiphealth.ca

Amber has over 12 years of Human Resources, Operations and Administration experience within the complex and constantly evolving landscape of UBC. Originally from Vancouver Island, she did her early training at University of Victoria, where she studied Math and Physics. After several years in corporate sales and event management, she decided to take her career in a completely different direction and return to the academic environment where she is continuously inspired by the research achievements of our Centre members and their teams.

Amber specializes in collaborating closely with researchers to build highly effective cross-functional teams and develop the administrative infrastructure to support both small and large scale research programming. Over the years she has facilitated the recruitment and onboarding of 100+ senior research experts, staff and trainees. She currently leads CHHM’s Operations, HR, Finance and Administrative groups. 

When she’s not at the Centre or chasing her three children around, Amber can be found in the kitchen working on one of her spectacular cake designs. On a good day, you may find some of her work on the countertop in the 7th floor lounge.

Research Advisory Committee

Ashe, Maureen

maureen.ashe@ubc.ca

Key Areas of Expertise

  • Physical activity and sedentary behaviour patterns
  • Active Aging
  • Community Participation
  • Behaviour Change
  • Older adults after hip fracture
  • Older adults who reside in Assisted Living communities
  • Middle-age adults at or near retirement
  • Built and social environments in fostering positive lifestyle behaviours
  • Mobility
  • Lifestyle interventions
  • Falls prevention
  • Bone health

Sit Less, Move More

As a VCHRI scientist at the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility (CHHM), Maureen Ashe’s goal may be simple—to get people to sit less and move more—but achieving it is anything but.

In the face of overwhelming evidence demonstrating the benefits of physical activity—from increased fitness to prevention of chronic conditions such as osteoporosis and arthritis, to better quality of life—many people still remain inactive and sedentary, particularly older adults.

Finding out why that’s so and what can be done to change behaviour is what gets Ashe out of bed in the morning.

And she has a special interest in the relationship between a healthy community—with accessible bus stops, frequent buses, protected bike paths, safe pedestrian walkways and plenty of benches and rest stops—and older adults’ participation in their community.

Translating new knowledge into action

Working with health professionals, fitness leaders and older adults themselves, Ashe develops, delivers and tests interventions designed to get older people moving, even those with mobility challenges, such as older adults recovering from hip fracture. Given that many older adults with a fall-related hip fracture have challenges to their mobility, this group is especially vulnerable.

Ashe says her research underlines the need to rethink the high-intensity approach to activity: “We shouldn’t be asking people to run marathons, swim laps or go to the gym in the first instance. There are lots of benefits to simply reducing sedentary time. Sit less and chances are you’ll do more everyday activity. It’s a good place to start toward increasing physical activity—and avoiding that decline in health or that spiral into decreased mobility. My approach is how can we maximize our ability to be out and about in our communities?”

A qualitative study Ashe led with patients who recovered well from hip surgery confirmed the benefits of simply sitting less. It also demonstrated the importance of support in the community and not doing too much, too soon.

Based on the findings, Ashe, her research team, and provincial clinicians created FReSH Start, a landmark, patient-centred toolkit on post-hip surgery care for older adults and their families, which is being distributed province-wide and around the world.

Ashe says a cornerstone of her research is practicality. “It’s not just a matter of telling people there are benefits to something,” she says. “You have to help them set goals and give them practical tools to get them to meet those goals.”

Everyday Activities and behaviour change

A recent pilot involving women age 55 to 70, called the EASY (Everyday Activity Supports You) model, demonstrates just how important these tools are. Results showed that a combination of group-based education, individualized physical activity plans and Fitbit activity monitors was more effective than education alone at getting participants to move more—and to reap the health benefits that go along with increased physical activity.

Motivating people to change instilled habits and behaviours can sometimes be challenging, Ashe says, but working with other committed clinicians and researchers at the CHHM and in the community makes it that much easier.

“Everyone is so willing to collaborate and the level of commitment is extremely high,” Ashe says. “Whether a work-study student, staff member, a clinician, researcher or study participant, everyone is working toward the same thing: to make a difference.”

Connect with Dr. Ashe

Join Dr. Ashe's Research Team

If you are interested in joining any of Dr. Ashe's research teams, please email her with your areas of interest and your current curriculum vitae.

Garbuz, Don

garbuz@shaw.ca
Clinical office telephone: 604-875-5767
Clinical office fax: 604-875-4617

Dr. Don Garbuz is Associate Professor and head of the Division of Lower Limb Reconstruction and Oncology in the Department of Orthopaedics, UBC. He graduated from McGill medical school and completed his residency in orthopaedics at the University of Toronto, followed by a fellowship on reconstructive surgery of the hip and knee. A member of the Hip Society, Dr. Garbuz is renowned for his expertise in problems that arise in the young adult hip and for seeking improved outcomes of joint replacements. His research interests include novel imaging techniques to assess early changes in articular cartilage, which may be indicators for osteoarthritis. Dr. Garbuz recently received the John Charnley award for his research on hip arthroplasty.

Hart, David

Professor David Hart, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary, was formerly Head of Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. He received his doctorate in Biochemistry from Michigan State University and went on to complete his postdoctoral training in immunology at the University of Illinois Medical Centre. He then joined the faculty at the University of Texas HSC at Dallas as an Assistant Professor. After promotion to Associate Professor, he became the Associate Director of the Interdisciplinary Immunology Program from its inception until 1983. In 1983, he joined the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Calgary as Chairman of the Immunology Research Group. He was subsequently a founding member of the Joint Injury and Arthritis Research Group, and served as Chair of this group for three years. Professor Hart was actively involved in raising funds from the private sector that resulted in the establishment of the multidisciplinary McCaig Centre for Joint Injury and Arthritis Research at the University of Calgary, and is currently the Interim Director of what is now the McCaig Institute for Bone & Joint Health.

Guy, Pierre

pierre.guy@ubc.ca
Clinic Office: 604-875-5809

Dr. Pierre Guy is Associate Professor and clinician-scientist at UBC Department of Orthopaedics, where he heads the Division of Orthopedic Trauma. He is the Centres’ Co-Director. His medical training and residency were completed at McGill University, followed by orthopaedic trauma fellowships in Hannover and Berlin, Germany and at UBC. Dr. Guy also holds a Master’s degree (MBA) from the John Molson School of Business, Concordia University. He is a practicing Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon at BC’s level 1 Trauma Centre, Vancouver General Hospital. He is a founding member of the Canadian Orthopedic Trauma Society and an active member of the Canadian Orthopedic Association and the Orthopedic Trauma Association.


Dr. Guy’s research is focused on hip, pelvis and acetabulum fracture prevention, treatment and post injury function. He collaborates with Mechanical, Electrical and Materials Engineers to evaluate the mechanism of fractures and imaging using novel techniques. He pursues clinical research trials and health services research, and collaborates with Government to realise Quality Improvement projects. He respectively co-leads the BC Hip Fracture Redesign project and the Canadian Hip Fracture Collaborative (Twitter: @HFStudy). His interdisciplinary team includes graduate students, clinical-residents, engineering trainees, epidemiologists, and biostatisticians.

Additional links to Dr. Guy's work:

Hunt, Michael

michael.hunt@ubc.ca

Dr. Michael A. Hunt is a clinical biomechanist and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of British Columbia. As a physiotherapist trained in fundamental biomechanics, the focus of Dr. Hunt’s work is to understand the biomechanical risk factors and consequences of injury and disease. The goal of his work is to develop targeted treatment approaches based on the unique characteristics of a given injury, resulting in improved physical function and quality of life.

Dr. Hunt's Lab: MabLab

Khan, Karim

karim.khan@ubc.ca

Karim Khan is Professor and clinician-scientist, Department of Family Practice, UBC. Dr. Khan has achieved international recognition for studies promoting greater mobility among vulnerable seniors. In a medical community that often focuses on pharmaceutical therapies, Dr. Khan has consistently reported the large benefit of physical activity for public health. He has published extensively, including those in high impact journals such as the British Medical Journal, where he also serves on the international editorial board. Dr. Khan is also the Editor of the British Journal of Sports Medicine, a leading international journal that focuses on the role of physical activity for health. Reflecting his contribution to knowledge translation, he is coauthor of the leading medical monograph for clinicians, Brukner and Khan's Clinical Sports Medicine (4th Edition, McGraw-Hill).

McKay, Heather

Professor Heather McKay, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, is in the Departments of Orthopaedics and Family Practice. She is an internationally-recognized leader in childhood and older adult bone health research. Her national recognition includes awards from the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (Senior Scholar) and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (Knowledge Translation). She has published extensively in scientific journals related to the positive role of exercise and other lifestyle factors on child and older adult health. Her talent for “moving research into action” – performing research that has impact – is illustrated by her lead role in the development and implementation of Action Schools! BC. This whole school of physical activity and healthy eating model engages almost half a million children in BC. The outcomes of her school-based research influenced the development of new policy related to daily physical activity in schools.  

Macdonald, Heather

heather.macdonald@ubc.ca

Dr. Heather Macdonald is Assistant Professor in the UBC Department of Orthopaedics. Her research interests include children's bone health with particular focus on how physical activity affects bone growth and development during childhood and adolescence in healthy and clinical populations. As well, Dr. Macdonald is interested in how novel three-dimensional imaging tools can be used to measure detailed aspects of bone quality in the growing skeleton, and how bone adapts to physical activity. Currently, Dr. Macdonald is working on three projects: 1) Bone Microstructure, Risk-taking Behaviour and Forearm Fractures in Boys and Girls; 2) Linking Exercise, Activity and Pathophysiology in Juvenile Arthritis (The LEAP study) and 3) The Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study (CaMos) – Bone Quality Study.

Dr. Heather Macdonald's Profile: Child & Family Research Institute

Mackey, Dawn

dmackey@sfu.ca

Dr. Mackey's research in the Aging and Population Health Lab investigates the prevention, etiology, and management of age-related mobility impairment and disability. This includes the study of acute events such as falls and osteoporotic fractures as well as chronic processes such as fatigue and impaired gait energetics. Research in the lab incorporates techniques from epidemiology, biostatistics, energetics, and clinical research. Ultimately, our research seeks to identify and disseminate effective strategies for successful population aging through maintenance of mobility and functional autonomy.

Primary research interests of the lab include:

  • Role of energy utilization and fatigue in the development of mobility limitation
  • Interventions to reduce disability and injury and improve mobility
  • Prevention and treatment of osteoporotic fractures, falls, and fall-related injuries
  • Physical activity adherence and promotion
  • Novel methods to objectively measure activity patterns in epidemiologic studies
  • Development and testing of clinical assessment tools
  • Longitudinal cohort studies, clinical trial design, causal inference
  • Knowledge synthesis, systematic review, and meta-analysis

Scott, Alex

alex.scott@ubc.ca

Areas of Specialization

  • Ergonomics
  • Workplace health
  • Intramuscular stimulation
  • Orthopedics
  • Muscles and joints
  • Sports therapy
  • Tendinopathy
  • Sports medicine
  • Physiotherapy
  • Kinesiology
  • Experimental medicine


Dr. Scott is a graduate of the UBC Physical Therapy program, and the UBC Experimental Medicine PhD program. His research targets a widespread problem, overuse injuries and chronically painful tendon disorder in workers and athletes. His research has been highlighted and supported locally by organizations including the WorksafeBC, Professional Association of BC and the Health Sciences Association, nationally through CIHR sponsored events and seminars, and internationally including sponsorship by the Canada-Scandinavia Foundation and the Swedish Research Council. He maintains active collaborations with Oslo University, Umeå University, and University of Paris. His work has been incorporated into widely used web-based clinical guidelines such as UpToDate©, and the Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy clinical guideline on Achilles tendinopathy.

One summer many years ago, while working as a landscaper, Alex Scott suffered a back injury and ended up in rehab. He found out first hand how physiotherapy can make the difference between a full life and one restricted by pain and limited mobility.

His experience that summer made such an impression that Scott changed the course of his academic career at the University of British Columbia (UBC), switching from Arts with a major in anthropology to Sciences and the Department of Physical Therapy. He went on to earn his Masters in kinesiology and a PhD in the UBC Experimental Medicine program.

Today, as a physiotherapist, associate professor in UBC’s Department of Physical Therapy and research scientist at the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility (CHHM), Scott is making a difference of his own. His research is helping improve treatments for the hundreds of thousands of Canadians who struggle with the pain and disability of tendon injuries every year.

“People don’t often think about their tendons,” Scott says, “but they’re in our knees, hips, shoulders, elbows wrists and heels. And the level of disability if they’re injured, whether through overuse or rupture, can be as great as that of osteoarthritis.”

In fact, Scott says he regularly receives emails from people dealing with chronic tendon injuries, formally known as tendinopathy, who say they are desperate to find relief. While some of these injuries are work or sports related, many are simply from age. Half of people 60 and up, Scott says, will experience some form of tendon trouble, most commonly in the shoulders. With an aging population, that means the incidence of tendinopathy and tendon rupture is headed in one direction—up.

To date, with sparse quality research available, the condition is little understood, says Scott. And that means many of the treatments being touted are questionable—with sometimes-heartrending results.

Scott knows of one elite young athlete who had a promising career in both baseball and basketball, until the tendons in both knees started giving him trouble. In desperation, the young man underwent a popular, but unproven injection therapy and his condition only got worse.

With the resources available at CHHM, Scott is working to prevent such . “We’re a leading Centre with a culture of high-quality, clinically conducted research, leading-edge technologies, and internationally renowned thinkers and scholars.”

Scott is investigating the effectiveness of commonly used treatments such as exercise, anti-inflammatory gels, intramuscular stimulation (a form of acupuncture therapy) and injection therapies such as platelet-rich plasma shots. “The only treatment for tendinopathy with strong evidence is exercise, yet many therapists are using the gels, acupuncture and injections. We need a higher level of evidence than just clinical anecdotes or testimony.” Scott also runs an active research laboratory exploring the possibility of new biologically targeted treatments based on recent insights into tendon pathology.

Scott is also examining why certain people develop injury from tendon overuse and others don’t. “Knowing the risk factors can help prevent the condition in the first place,” Scott says. “This is important because at the moment, there is no way to completely restore an injured tendon back to normal.

Meantime, with publications in several prestigious international journals such as Arthritis and Rheumatism, the British Journal of Sports Medicine and the Lancet, Scott’s insights are quickly being translated from paper to practice—with benefits for both patients and practitioners.

Clinicians can point their patients in the direction of treatments proven to be effective—and patients don’t waste time, energy and hope on those unsubstantiated by the evidence.

Sims-Gould, Joanie

joanie.sims-gould@hiphealth.ca

Areas of specialization

  • Home care
  • Frail older adults
  • Residential/long-term care
  • Nursing homes
  • Family care-giving
  • Impact research
  • Knowledge translation
  • Age-friendly communities
  • Social work practice

Joanie Sims-Gould can recall with clarity celebrating her grandparents’ 87th birthday in their family home of 50 years. She knew at the time that if not for the home care and other community services her grandparents had received in recent years, they’d be celebrating this birthday in a nursing home.

As part of a four-generation Canadian family, Sims-Gould has been surrounded by older people for as long as she can remember. And that personal history has driven her professional life as research scientist at the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility (CHHM).

Like Sims-Gould’s grandparents, most older adults prefer to age in their family homes for as long as they can, in spite of health and mobility challenges; Sims-Gould is on a quest to find out how to make that possible.

Canada's changing demographics

The answers are critical given Canada’s demographic shift to an aging population. By 2016, there will be more people over the age of 85 than those under the age of 15—a first in North American history.

Sims-Gould’s work focuses on two complementary subject areas: home care services and the neighborhood built environment. Her investigations into how the two impact older adults’ health and mobility, particularly those in the 85-and-up age bracket, are adding significant weight to a previously slim body of knowledge.

Through the collection of data from 400 older adults and in-depth interviews with more than 100 older adults from various Lower Mainland neighborhoods, Sims-Gould has already learned a great deal about what makes a neighborhood a good place to grow old. Adequate housing, recreational opportunities and amenities that promote physical activity are all key. The data collected includes the perspectives of immigrant older adults, who make up a third of the older Canadian population and are at higher risk of social isolation.

Translating research into action

To ensure the findings reach community and government stakeholders and impact programs and policy, Sims-Gould used her knowledge translation expertise to help create a 19-minute documentary video called “I’d Rather Stay,” which addresses issues of mobility, isolation and independence through the eyes of older adults. The video has been screened by City Councilors and City Managers across BC and screened in national and international film festivals.

Focus on Home Care

More recently, Sims-Gould has been looking at programs that support both the social and mobility needs of older adults receiving home care services. She is working closely with a number of home care agencies to determine best practices. She hopes the results will lead to improvements in home care services, as well as programs and policies that support adequate training for home care workers.

Sims-Gould’s approach to research is unique. She engages study participants in every stage of the process from question design to application. “I do research with them and for them, not on them,” Sims-Gould says. “That way, we ensure the findings are relevant.”

She says the CHHM is critical to the quality of her work. “I have close access to patients and a comprehensive team of experts on everything from cost-effectiveness to hip fractures to biomedical engineering.”

Clearly, what’s good for Sims-Gould is good for us all. Her work in this emerging field is fundamental to planning and developing strategies that will allow our parents and grandparents—indeed, all of us as we age—to live safely at home where we want to be.

“It’s not just about adding years to life,” Sims-Gould says, “it’s about adding life to later years.”

Dr. Sims-Gould's current work

Join Dr. Sims-Gould's Research Team

If you are interested in joining any of Dr. Sims-Gould's research teams, please email her with your areas of interest and your current curriculum vitae.

Wang, Rizhi

rzwang@mail.ubc.ca

Dr. Rizhi Wang is Associate Professor at the Department of Materials Engineering, UBC, and Associate, Department of  orthopaedics, UBC. Dr. Wang’s experience spans academic positions at Tsinghua University, the Weizmann Institute of Science, University of Minnesota, and Princeton. Dr. Wang is well known for his research on material-related issues around hip  replacement, his expertise in implant processing and fracture mechanics. Dr. Wang’s research interests include orthopaedic implants, drug delivery biomaterials, anti-infection solutions, bone/implant fixation, and bone structure and mechanics. Dr. Wang currently serves on the Board for the Canadian Biomaterials Society.

Wilson, David

dawilson@interchange.ubc.ca

Areas of Specialization

  • Knees
  • Hips
  • Joints
  • Sports injuries
  • Arthritis
  • Medical imagery
  • Biomechanics
  • Pain disabilities
  • Osteoarthritis

Dr. David Wilson is a Professor in the Department of Orthopaedics at UBC. He received his D. Phil. in Engineering Science from the University of Oxford for work on the 3-dimensional kinematics of the knee, followed by a fellowship in orthopaedic biomechanics. His research interests include sports medicine, joint reconstruction/ replacement, and medical imaging. Dr. Wilson is renowned for his research on the links between joint mechanics, clinical symptoms, and the success of orthopaedic procedures. His team has expertise in non-invasive assessments of cartilage health, including the use of emerging MRI techniques, such as delayed gadolinium-enhanced MRI of cartilage (dGEMRIC), to detect changes in osteoarthritic joints much earlier than conventionally possible.  Dr. Wilson was awarded a Canadian Arthritis Network New Investigator award.

Even as a child, Dave was fascinated with the way things worked. When he wasn’t building something—tree houses, go-carts or electronic gizmos—he was taking them apart to study their inner workings. Today, his fascination with all things mechanical remains intact, but it’s much more than child’s play.

While earning his PhD in Engineering Science from England’s Oxford University—and as a member of the school’s competitive rowing team—Wilson decided to focus on biomedical engineering. “I saw lots of injuries and joint problems in my teammates,” says Wilson. “And I thought what a good application of engineering, to study the mechanics of the joints.”

On his return to North America, he did post-doc fellowships at John Hopkins University and Harvard University in orthopedic biomechanics. He’s now applying that knowledge to demystifying the joints, which he dubs the most interesting mechanical structures in the human anatomy. And he hopes his work will lead to early diagnosis and early interventions that prevent osteoarthritis, a painful, degenerative joint disease that often requires knee or hip replacements.

“Osteoarthritis really slows people down,” Wilson says. “It forces them to be less active at a time in their lives when it’s critical to stay active.”

Understanding the links between clinical symptoms such as pain and joint mechanics is the best way to develop effective interventions, says Wilson. And he and his team were among the first to use medical imaging such as X-Rays, CT Scans, MRIs (magnetic resonance imaging) and ultrasound to study joint function and understand why some people develop osteoarthritis and others don’t.

Recently, an exciting new weapon was added to the arsenal of imaging equipment at Wilson’s disposal. The new machine has led to more “aha” moments than even he could predict. It’s called an Upright Open MRI scanner and of the dozen around the world, this one is the only one dedicated to research.

“This machine is special,” says Wilson, “because it allows us to look at the joint in action—while it’s bearing weight. We can get images while patients are sitting, standing or squatting, impossible with a conventional MRI, which requires patients to lie motionless inside a tube. And we’re seeing things with that scanner we’ve never seen before. Every month, we see something new.”

Of course, machines are only part of the equation, says Wilson: “At the Centre, we have such strong links to clinicians—orthopedic surgeons, rheumatologists, physical therapists, physicists and radiologists—and they help shape the most interesting questions.”

That combination of people and technology is allowing Wilson to test the theory that debilitating hip osteoarthritis is the progressive result of subtle hip bone deformities present in people as young as 20 to 50—rather than a condition that just happens to some people as they age. “It’s believed that these bone deformities are present in as much as 25 percent of the population,” Wilson says.

As part of his five-year study, the research team will scan and monitor 140 young and middle-aged patients with hip pain in the Upright MRI. “The more we can learn about the cause of that joint pain, using the unique capabilities of this machine, the better able we are to design effective treatment and preventions strategies for osteoarthritis,” he says.

And that’s good news for the more than one million British Columbians projected to be treated for osteoarthritis in the next 25 years—and for the 85 percent of Canadians over the age of 75 currently living with the disease.

Research Facilities Comittee

Cripton, Peter

cripton@mech.ubc.ca

Dr. Cripton's work focuses on using the principles of biomechanics to prevent injuries through work known as injury biomechanics. This is the field principly involved in the design of safety devices such as helmets airbags seatbelts and ski bindings. Dr. Cripton has Bachelor's degrees in Mathematics and Mechanical Engineering from Dalhousie University and the Technical University of Nova Scotia, respectively. He has a Master's and PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Queen's University. He was a Postdoctoral fellow at Yale University and spent three years consulting with an Engineering and Consulting company called Exponent in Philadelphia prior to moving to UBC.

Guy, Pierre

pierre.guy@ubc.ca
Clinic Office: 604-875-5809

Dr. Pierre Guy is Associate Professor and clinician-scientist at UBC Department of Orthopaedics, where he heads the Division of Orthopedic Trauma. He is the Centres’ Co-Director. His medical training and residency were completed at McGill University, followed by orthopaedic trauma fellowships in Hannover and Berlin, Germany and at UBC. Dr. Guy also holds a Master’s degree (MBA) from the John Molson School of Business, Concordia University. He is a practicing Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon at BC’s level 1 Trauma Centre, Vancouver General Hospital. He is a founding member of the Canadian Orthopedic Trauma Society and an active member of the Canadian Orthopedic Association and the Orthopedic Trauma Association.


Dr. Guy’s research is focused on hip, pelvis and acetabulum fracture prevention, treatment and post injury function. He collaborates with Mechanical, Electrical and Materials Engineers to evaluate the mechanism of fractures and imaging using novel techniques. He pursues clinical research trials and health services research, and collaborates with Government to realise Quality Improvement projects. He respectively co-leads the BC Hip Fracture Redesign project and the Canadian Hip Fracture Collaborative (Twitter: @HFStudy). His interdisciplinary team includes graduate students, clinical-residents, engineering trainees, epidemiologists, and biostatisticians.

Additional links to Dr. Guy's work:

Hart, David

hartd@ucalgary.ca

Professor David Hart, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary, was formerly Head of Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. He received his doctorate in Biochemistry from Michigan State University and went on to complete his postdoctoral training in immunology at the University of Illinois Medical Centre. He then joined the faculty at the University of Texas HSC at Dallas as an Assistant Professor. After promotion to Associate Professor, he became the Associate Director of the Interdisciplinary Immunology Program from its inception until 1983. In 1983, he joined the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Calgary as Chairman of the Immunology Research Group. He was subsequently a founding member of the Joint Injury and Arthritis Research Group, and served as Chair of this group for three years. Professor Hart was actively involved in raising funds from the private sector that resulted in the establishment of the multidisciplinary McCaig Centre for Joint Injury and Arthritis
Research at the University of Calgary, and is currently a member of what is now the McCaig Institute for Bone & Joint Health. Dr. Hart is currently also a Professor in the Departments of Surgery, Medicine, and Microbiology & ID, as well as a Member of the Bioengineering Graduate Program, as well as a Special Advisor to the director of the CHHM.

Dr. David Hart's Affiliations:
University of Calgary Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Infectious Diseases
McCaig Institute for Bone & Joint Health
Canadian Academy of Health Sciences
OA Alberta Osteoarthritis Team

Liu, Danmei

danmei.liu@hiphealth.ca

Dr. Liu leads CHHM's Research Operations Group. Her PhD is in Materials Engineering and she brings more than ten years’ experience in the fields of medical imaging and biomechanical engineering.

Dr. Liu manages and coordinates all research projects conducted at CHHM and oversees our $12 million suite of equipment.  

Danmei can provide:

  • Project direction and management for research programs and operations
  • Expertise in both ex-vivo and in-vivo research methodologies
  • Collaboration opportunities with other research groups

Liu-Ambrose, Teresa

teresa.ambrose@ubc.ca

Canada Research Chair

Research Director, Falls Prevention Clinic

Co-Site Lead for the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging, UBC Site

Associate Professor, Department of Physical Therapy, UBC

 

Dr. Liu-Ambrose’s research laboratory, The Aging, Mobility and Cognitive Neuroscience Lab, focuses on defining the role of exercise to promote healthy aging, with a particular focus on cognitive and neural plasticity, as well as mobility. Various method are utilized in the lab, including randomized controlled trials, functional neuroimaging, and actigraphy.

Dr. Liu-Ambrose works collaboratively with faculty in Psychology, Neurology, Family Practice, Geriatric Medicine, and Health Care and Epidemiology. Dr. Liu-Ambrose is an investigator with the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility and the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health.

For more information on The Aging, Mobility and Cognitive Function Lab, please visit their website.

Phillips, Amy

Amy.Phillips@hiphealth.ca 

604-875-4111 ext. 21785

In her role as the Centre's Advanced Imaging Specialist, Amy is the primary contact for our Upright Open MRI Suite. Amy works closely with Investigators & Research Study Teams, VGH MRI technologists, UBC MRI physicists, the vendor (Paramed), and other associated parties to optimize the image quality and maximize the use of the Upright Open MRI Suite. Amy also supports the other imaging suites at the Centre including the DXA, HR-pQCT, pQCT, and microCT. 

Amy is an experienced Orthopaedic Researcher and Engineer with over 10 years of engineering and clinical research experience at UBC, in industry, and in the non-profit sector.

If you are planning a project and would like input on how the Upright Open MRI could benefit your work, please contact Amy.

Stefanson, Amber

Wilson, David

dawilson@interchange.ubc.ca

Areas of Specialization

  • Knees
  • Hips
  • Joints
  • Sports injuries
  • Arthritis
  • Medical imagery
  • Biomechanics
  • Pain disabilities
  • Osteoarthritis

Dr. David Wilson is a Professor in the Department of Orthopaedics at UBC. He received his D. Phil. in Engineering Science from the University of Oxford for work on the 3-dimensional kinematics of the knee, followed by a fellowship in orthopaedic biomechanics. His research interests include sports medicine, joint reconstruction/ replacement, and medical imaging. Dr. Wilson is renowned for his research on the links between joint mechanics, clinical symptoms, and the success of orthopaedic procedures. His team has expertise in non-invasive assessments of cartilage health, including the use of emerging MRI techniques, such as delayed gadolinium-enhanced MRI of cartilage (dGEMRIC), to detect changes in osteoarthritic joints much earlier than conventionally possible. Dr. Wilson was awarded a Canadian Arthritis Network New Investigator award.

Even as a child, Dave was fascinated with the way things worked. When he wasn’t building something—tree houses, go-carts or electronic gizmos—he was taking them apart to study their inner workings. Today, his fascination with all things mechanical remains intact, but it’s much more than child’s play.

While earning his PhD in Engineering Science from England’s Oxford University—and as a member of the school’s competitive rowing team—Wilson decided to focus on biomedical engineering. “I saw lots of injuries and joint problems in my teammates,” says Wilson. “And I thought what a good application of engineering, to study the mechanics of the joints.”

On his return to North America, he did post-doc fellowships at John Hopkins University and Harvard University in orthopedic biomechanics. He’s now applying that knowledge to demystifying the joints, which he dubs the most interesting mechanical structures in the human anatomy. And he hopes his work will lead to early diagnosis and early interventions that prevent osteoarthritis, a painful, degenerative joint disease that often requires knee or hip replacements.

“Osteoarthritis really slows people down,” Wilson says. “It forces them to be less active at a time in their lives when it’s critical to stay active.”

Understanding the links between clinical symptoms such as pain and joint mechanics is the best way to develop effective interventions, says Wilson. And he and his team were among the first to use medical imaging such as X-Rays, CT Scans, MRIs (magnetic resonance imaging) and ultrasound to study joint function and understand why some people develop osteoarthritis and others don’t.

Recently, an exciting new weapon was added to the arsenal of imaging equipment at Wilson’s disposal. The new machine has led to more “aha” moments than even he could predict. It’s called an Upright Open MRI scanner and of the dozen around the world, this one is the only one dedicated to research.

“This machine is special,” says Wilson, “because it allows us to look at the joint in action—while it’s bearing weight. We can get images while patients are sitting, standing or squatting, impossible with a conventional MRI, which requires patients to lie motionless inside a tube. And we’re seeing things with that scanner we’ve never seen before. Every month, we see something new.”

Of course, machines are only part of the equation, says Wilson: “At the Centre, we have such strong links to clinicians—orthopedic surgeons, rheumatologists, physical therapists, physicists and radiologists—and they help shape the most interesting questions.”

That combination of people and technology is allowing Wilson to test the theory that debilitating hip osteoarthritis is the progressive result of subtle hip bone deformities present in people as young as 20 to 50—rather than a condition that just happens to some people as they age. “It’s believed that these bone deformities are present in as much as 25 percent of the population,” Wilson says.

As part of his five-year study, the research team will scan and monitor 140 young and middle-aged patients with hip pain in the Upright MRI. “The more we can learn about the cause of that joint pain, using the unique capabilities of this machine, the better able we are to design effective treatment and preventions strategies for osteoarthritis,” he says.

And that’s good news for the more than one million British Columbians projected to be treated for osteoarthritis in the next 25 years—and for the 85 percent of Canadians over the age of 75 currently living with the disease.

Winters, Meghan

meghan.winters@hiphealth.ca

Dr. Winters is a population health researcher interested in the link between health, transportation, and city design.  Her research focuses on ways that cities and their infrastructure can play a role in promoting healthy and safe travel, for people of all ages and abilities. Current projects include natural experiments and cross-sectional studies looking at the role of the social and the built environment on the health and mobility of older adults and youth; studies on the impact and equity of public bikeshare initiatives, locally and internationally; and an assessment of data needs related to the integration of health and transportation in practice. Given her focus on knowledge translation, she has been involved in the development of a number of end user tools, including a web-based interactive Cycling Route Planner (www.cyclevancouver.ubc.ca), and a partnership with the US company Walk Score, to launch a “Bike Score” for cities across North America.

Trainee Committee

Scott, Alex (Faculty Liaison)

alex.scott@ubc.ca

Areas of Specialization

  • Ergonomics
  • Workplace health
  • Intramuscular stimulation
  • Orthopedics
  • Muscles and joints
  • Sports therapy
  • Tendinopathy
  • Sports medicine
  • Physiotherapy
  • Kinesiology
  • Experimental medicine


Dr. Scott is a graduate of the UBC Physical Therapy program, and the UBC Experimental Medicine PhD program. His research targets a widespread problem, overuse injuries and chronically painful tendon disorder in workers and athletes. His research has been highlighted and supported locally by organizations including the WorksafeBC, Professional Association of BC and the Health Sciences Association, nationally through CIHR sponsored events and seminars, and internationally including sponsorship by the Canada-Scandinavia Foundation and the Swedish Research Council. He maintains active collaborations with Oslo University, Umeå University, and University of Paris. His work has been incorporated into widely used web-based clinical guidelines such as UpToDate©, and the Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy clinical guideline on Achilles tendinopathy.

One summer many years ago, while working as a landscaper, Alex Scott suffered a back injury and ended up in rehab. He found out first hand how physiotherapy can make the difference between a full life and one restricted by pain and limited mobility.

His experience that summer made such an impression that Scott changed the course of his academic career at the University of British Columbia (UBC), switching from Arts with a major in anthropology to Sciences and the Department of Physical Therapy. He went on to earn his Masters in kinesiology and a PhD in the UBC Experimental Medicine program.

Today, as a physiotherapist, associate professor in UBC’s Department of Physical Therapy and research scientist at the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility (CHHM), Scott is making a difference of his own. His research is helping improve treatments for the hundreds of thousands of Canadians who struggle with the pain and disability of tendon injuries every year.

“People don’t often think about their tendons,” Scott says, “but they’re in our knees, hips, shoulders, elbows wrists and heels. And the level of disability if they’re injured, whether through overuse or rupture, can be as great as that of osteoarthritis.”

In fact, Scott says he regularly receives emails from people dealing with chronic tendon injuries, formally known as tendinopathy, who say they are desperate to find relief. While some of these injuries are work or sports related, many are simply from age. Half of people 60 and up, Scott says, will experience some form of tendon trouble, most commonly in the shoulders. With an aging population, that means the incidence of tendinopathy and tendon rupture is headed in one direction—up.

To date, with sparse quality research available, the condition is little understood, says Scott. And that means many of the treatments being touted are questionable—with sometimes-heartrending results.

Scott knows of one elite young athlete who had a promising career in both baseball and basketball, until the tendons in both knees started giving him trouble. In desperation, the young man underwent a popular, but unproven injection therapy and his condition only got worse.

With the resources available at CHHM, Scott is working to prevent such . “We’re a leading Centre with a culture of high-quality, clinically conducted research, leading-edge technologies, and internationally renowned thinkers and scholars.”

Scott is investigating the effectiveness of commonly used treatments such as exercise, anti-inflammatory gels, intramuscular stimulation (a form of acupuncture therapy) and injection therapies such as platelet-rich plasma shots. “The only treatment for tendinopathy with strong evidence is exercise, yet many therapists are using the gels, acupuncture and injections. We need a higher level of evidence than just clinical anecdotes or testimony.” Scott also runs an active research laboratory exploring the possibility of new biologically targeted treatments based on recent insights into tendon pathology.

Scott is also examining why certain people develop injury from tendon overuse and others don’t. “Knowing the risk factors can help prevent the condition in the first place,” Scott says. “This is important because at the moment, there is no way to completely restore an injured tendon back to normal.

Meantime, with publications in several prestigious international journals such as Arthritis and Rheumatism, the British Journal of Sports Medicine and the Lancet, Scott’s insights are quickly being translated from paper to practice—with benefits for both patients and practitioners.

Clinicians can point their patients in the direction of treatments proven to be effective—and patients don’t waste time, energy and hope on those unsubstantiated by the evidence.

Yang, Yijian

yijiany@sfu.ca

Sims-Gould, Joanie (Faculty Liaison)

joanie.sims-gould@hiphealth.ca

Dr. Joanie Sims-Gould is involved in knowledge translation and exchange across a number of projects at CHHM primarily with older adults, their families, the health professionals who work with them and local, provincial and national stakeholders. Her research interests include: the delivery of home health services to elderly clients (home care), the intersection of family care and health care, aging in place and the role of the built environment, aging in a long term care environment, knowledge translation and exchange and qualitative research methodologies.  

French, Josh

Esfandiari, Hooman

Finnamore, Evan

Pandey, Prashant

Lee, Jenny

Desrochers, Jane

Galea, Kirsten