This month meet Dr. Glen Jickling
Neurologist at the University of Alberta Hospital
1. Where were you born?
I was born in Calgary at the Foothills Hospital. I grew up in Calgary, and then did my schooling both in Calgary and Edmonton.
2. When and how did you decide to become a doctor?
Probably halfway through my undergrad degree. I did an undergrad in biochemistry at the University of Calgary, and I just enjoyed learning about how the body works and wanted a practical way to apply that knowledge. So I pursued applying to medical school, and was fortunate enough to get in at the University of Alberta.
3. What area of care do you specialize in?
I’m a neurologist, and my specialty is stroke care. Most of the work we do is treating patients when they first have their stroke. Within the first few hours, our goal is to try to get blood vessels open and restore blood flow to the brain. Then our other job is trying to prevent strokes when they have happened, so it’s treating blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, high cholesterol, and trying to reduce people’s risk of having a stroke as much as possible.
We also work with the Stroke Ambulance – it’s sort of like bringing the Emergency Department to the patient while on the road. If we get a call from a person who’s having a stroke within the two-hour radius of where the Stroke Ambulance can go, we will be the ones that deploy it. We have a stroke team who goes out on the ambulance, and then we’ll be interpreting the imaging from the CAT Scanner. If it looks like the person is eligible for the clot-busting drug, we would be guiding the administration of that on the ambulance.
[The Stroke Ambulance saves lives of thousands of Albertans, which has been made possible by $3.3 million from donors to the University Hospital Foundation’s Brain Centre Campaign.]
4. What do you do for fun?
The main thing I enjoy doing for fun is biking. I often bike to work, then go to different parks and bike there.
I also have three boys and enjoy hanging out with them. We enjoy going to playgrounds, just doing whatever kids like to do.
5. Where is your favorite hangout?
Terwillegar Park is a fun place to go to bike and just to go on the paths. It’s a great place to explore nature and relax. I also enjoy spending time in the Edmonton River Valley.
6. What has support from the University Hospital Foundation meant for your program?
It’s meant a great deal. It’s tremendous to have such great support. Getting funding for research is very challenging, and I think having the University Hospital Foundation support projects that they see as very important for Albertans and Edmontonians is fantastic.
For me, personally, the support from donors has been outstanding. There are a ton of projects I couldn’t do without the donations through the University Hospital Foundation. I really believe that it fills a tremendous role, and I think donors should be very proud of the work they’re contributing to.
Generous donors to the University Hospital Foundation support the work of Dr. Jickling and the Brain Centre through funding of new treatments and testing, supporting research, and creating patient-centered environments and educational opportunities for brain care teams.
Dr. Jickling is developing a blood test that will reduce precious time-to-treatment by diagnosing a stroke within minutes instead of hours.