May 01, 2015

Aditya S. Pandey, MD: Neurosurgeon, clinician, father

Aditya S. Pandey, MD
What do you do at UMHS?

I’m a cerebral vascular neurosurgeon in the Department of Neurosurgery. I treat patients with blood vessel related problems of the spinal cord and brain, including brain aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations, and stroke. I perform both open microsurgery and minimally invasive endovascular procedures. I also continue to practice general neurosurgery.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

I really enjoy my interaction with patients and the opportunity to impact their health outcomes. I meet individuals who come to me fearing the worst. I’m privileged to spend time with them – teaching them about their condition, explaining treatment options, discussing potential outcomes – and then acting upon those. I’m honored to be a part of their treatment team and to have a part in influencing their health.

When you’re not working, what do you do?

I spend time with my wife and three children, ages 9, 8 and 6. We play basketball and tennis; we ride bikes; and we enjoy college football. We have a divided family as I grew up in Ohio and continue to root for the Buckeyes, while my wife (a U-M alum) and kids are Wolverine fans.

What is something your colleagues don’t know about you?

I didn’t learn English until I was in 5th grade. My family emigrated from India to Marion, Ohio, when I was 10 years old. Until then, I was not introduced to English. Thanks to great teachers and my parents, I quickly learned the language. Now, no one can tell that I’m not a native speaker.

Who had the greatest influence on your career path?

My 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Hughes, had a tremendous impact on my academic success. She spent countless hours helping me learn English. If she hadn’t devoted all that time, I would never have been able to progress through high school, college, medical school, and residency to arrive where I am today.

What did you want to be when you were a kid?

I originally wanted to be an engineer. I started my studies in bioengineering but as I took more biology-based courses, I realized that interactions with patients were more satisfying to me. So I decided to pursue medicine.

What are you currently reading?

My son brought home “I Am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up for Education and Changed the World” (Young Readers Edition). It’s the story of Malala’s family, her life in Pakistan and her fight for girls’ education. My son and I are reading it together and we’re both learning from it.

What is the best advice you have ever received?

I’ve been lucky to have had great mentors. I’m inspired by their work ethic, dedication, and motivation. I try to live by Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy: “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”