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Rhoads Research Lecture and Awards Ceremony (T10)

Mar 26 | 8:00AM - 9:15AM

Modulation of the Hypercatabolic Response to Burns and Trauma: The Interaction of Environment, Diet, Surgery and Exercise

David Herndon_2The 2019 Rhoads Lecture is awarded to David N. Herndon, MD.  Dr. Herndon’s presentation will outline the historic basis for therapeutic modulation of the hypercatabolic response to burns and trauma that has been established by multiple investigators over the last 50 years. Specifically, catabolism can be lessened by maintenance of environmental temperatures and provision of appropriate diet. The presentation will discuss the impact of early definitive surgery on reducing the hypermetabolic response and ameliorating catabolism over time. Evidence for improvement in outcomes through early and sustained exercise will be given. An argument will be presented that interventions that address catabolic states must be continued for prolonged periods of time to be effective. Data indicating that genetic changes occur in almost 2/3 of the cells in the body in response to stress will be shown. Persistence of that response is dependent on the type of stress burn response lasting longer than trauma which lasts longer than sepsis. The possibility that these genetic changes may result in lifelong susceptibilities to other challenges will be raised.

Learning Objective

Familiarize the audience with the genetic determinates’ physiologic phenotypes of the hypercatabolic response and methods of treatment of the responses.

At the conclusion of the Presentation, the learner will be able to :
Modulate catabolism through:

  • Environmental control and surgery
  • Diet support
  • Pharmacologic methods

Key Takeaways

  1. Two-thirds of the body’s genes are altered by burns, trauma or septic stress
  2. Catabolic responses can persist well into convalescence
  3. Therapies to combat catabolism must be long lasting


David Herndon, MD, Jesse H. Jones Distinguished Chair in Burn Surgery, Professor of Surgery & Pediatrics; Director of Research, Shriners Hospitals for Children in Galveston, TX

About David N. Herndon, MD

Dr. Herndon is the Jesse H. Jones Distinguished Chair in Burn Surgery, Professor of Surgery & Pediatrics; Director of Research, Shriners Hospitals for Children in Galveston, TX. He holds a B.A. and M.D. from Case Western Reserve University. He completed his surgical training at Duke University, the US Army at the Brooke Army Medical Center—Institute of Surgical Research, and the New York Hospital—Cornell Medical Center.

Dr. Herndon began his research in the late 1970s, when he developed a small animal model to study the humoral mediators of hypermetabolism due to burns, developed a large animal model to study smoke inhalation injury, and began research on new drugs and techniques to improve the immune deficiency state after burns. Over the last three decades, his studies in these areas have significantly contributed to control of infection, reduction of hypermetabolism, treatment of smoke inhalation injury, ultimately resulting in lower mortality, decreased scarring, and improved rehabilitation after burn injury. In addition, he has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for the last 25 years and Shriners Hospitals for Children for the last 30 years.

Dr. Herndon has authored over 1,000 peer‐reviewed articles and has contributed to numerous books, most notably “Total Burn Care”, a worldwide reference for burn care. He is the recipient of several awards including Harvey Stuart Allen Distinguished Service Award from the ABA, and Flance-Karl Award from the American Surgical Association. In 2014, Dr. Herndon was awarded the prestigious Medallion for Scientific Achievement by the ASA and also received the Tanner-Vandeput-Boswick Burn Prize from the International Burn Foundation. He was given the Special Achievement Award by the American Burn Association in 2015. In 2016, Dr. Herndon received recognition from the American College of Critical Care Medicine when he was presented with the ACCM Distinguished Investigator Award.

Dr. Herndon is active in national and international organizations. He currently serves as President of the Southern Surgical Association. He is Past President of the International Society for Burn Injuries, the American Burn Association, the Society of University Surgeons and the Singleton Surgical Society. Dr. Herndon was most recently named as Editor for the Journal of Burn Care and Rehabilitation. Education has also been a major focus of Dr. Herndon’s career, with more than 200 fellows, physicians and researchers having completed training under him.

This session is part of the ASPEN19 Virtual Conference