Dr. Yang is a neurosurgeon at UCLA. He described his work as a doctor who opens people up and puts them back together. His focus is on problems of the brain and spinal cord. Dr. Yang has been featured in articles online several times for his research on vaccines and Gamma Knife Radiosurgery. I got to ask him questions and find out more on these subjects.
As for the vaccines, the trials are currently going on right now at UCLA and UCSF. These vaccines recognize proteins on bacteria or cells that are wrong and goes after it. Dr. Yang’s research and work with these vaccines include different kinds of therapies. Right now he is trying to work on a nanoparticle vaccine to try and find different kinds of proteins that can help the immune system recognize the proteins on brain cancer so your body can fight brain cancer.
Dr. Yang believes in having connections with his patients. He told me that this is a journey they go on together. If you want to go down one way, he has to be with you. You have to discuss it with him, as long as you both agree to move forward. He always tells his patients, “You and I are going to be friends for pretty much the rest of your life. Maybe even the rest of my life. We’re going to be friends no matter what. It’s a journey.”
In fact, that was one of things he said was the best thing about his job. It’s having those connections with his patients that make the journeys he goes on worthwhile.
There are many mistakes a patient or a family can make with brain tumors. They can just hand themselves or their child over without knowing what is going on. “I think the biggest mistake I think I see patients make are doing something that A, they’re not comfortable with. So if you don’t know what’s going on, you have to ask. And I know it’s hard too, because doctors are kind of scary but you have to ask,” Dr. Yang told me. “Patients have to have more voice to speak up and doctors need more of a voice to make it comfortable to speak up. So I think the biggest mistake is doing something they’re not comfortable with. And so you have to make sure that you’re comfortable and that you have everything explained to you.”
Dr. Isaac Yang couldn’t be more of a compassionate neurosurgeon. He needs to be with his patient’s every step of the way. He makes sure that he’s in their lives to make sure that they are okay.
Dr. Yang and I have something in common, which is the main reason I wanted to interview him. He hates brain tumors. They sicken him. And that is why he is there to remove them. That is why I am here. Maybe I cannot remove them like he can, but we both have a similar goal in mind.