Meet the Doctor: Eric Ghiraldi, DO
Eric Ghiraldi, DO, is a urologist at Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia and at Einstein Medical Center Elkins Park. He sees patients at Einstein Urology offices on Tabor Road in Philadelphia and on Township Line Road in Elkins Park.
As a resident at Einstein Healthcare Network, Dr. Ghiraldi was a recipient of the first healthcare disparities SEED Grant. Funds from the study provided resources to patients from underserved communities within North Philadelphia after they had surgery for prostate cancer.
We recently spoke with Dr. Ghiraldi about his career, his interests, and urology at Einstein.
Why did you decide to become a doctor?
I was always interested in pursuing a career in health care. My mother was a dental hygienist, and she would always share stories of the relationships she had with her patients. I knew I wanted that as part of my career.
As an undergraduate student at New York Institute of Technology, I was first exposed to urology as a volunteer research assistant. I fell in love with the field of urology and that experience is what made me want to become a doctor.
Tell us about your education background.
I received my medical degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine. I completed residency training in urological surgery at Einstein Healthcare Network.
My fellowship at Yale New Haven Hospital was in minimally invasive surgery, which includes laparoscopic/robotic surgery and endoscopic surgery for both benign prostatic hyperplasia, a condition in which the flow of urine is blocked due to the enlargement of prostate gland, and kidney stones.
Why did you choose your specialty?
My first experience in urology when I was a college student was at Northwell Hospital on Long Island. I shadowed one of the urologists there for a full year in the operating room and during office hours. The impact the urologist had on his patients for both benign and malignant urological disorders was inspiring.
The more I learned about urology, I realized how innovative the specialty was. It’s one of the first specialties to adopt the robotic platform for minimally invasive surgery. Even more interesting, most urological conditions that require surgery can be performed without any incisions.
Most urological conditions require long term follow-up with patients. This allows me to build strong relationships with my patients over time. This is ultimately what I was looking for most in my career.
What drew you to Einstein?
The patients at Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia. As previously mentioned, I was a resident here for five years. I truly enjoyed taking care of the patient population at Einstein as a resident. I want to provide our patients the very best care because they deserve it.
Over the course of my career, my goal is primarily to help improve access to excellent urological care in the community of North Philadelphia. This includes bringing new technology to Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia to better treat benign and malignant urological disorders.
Why should people choose Einstein for their urology care?
Our department has built a culture focused on the idea that when you come to Einstein, you will receive the very best care.
Our practice has urologists who specialize in every aspect of urology. This includes general urology, endourology, voiding dysfunction, female pelvic floor reconstruction, genitourinary reconstruction, urological trauma, and oncology. Almost all the urologists within our practice receive referrals from other urologists outside of Einstein’s network for the level of specialty care that is provided here.
Our practice is at the forefront of new technology recently acquiring a laser technology that improves efficiency when treating kidney stones. This equipment also allows us to perform holmium laser enucleation of the prostate, which is a procedure that treats benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), an enlargement of the prostate. Also, Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia recently acquired an advanced robotic platform to perform minimally invasive surgery.
It truly is an exciting time to provide care for patients here at Einstein.
What are your interests outside of work?
I love spending time with my wife and daughter. We go to parks, farms, fairs, and soccer, swim and gymnastics practices.
Who was an early role model for you?
I have had many role models throughout my life. They include my parents, coaches from football and lacrosse growing up, and clinical mentors, from my early volunteer experiences at Northwell Hospital to today at Einstein Healthcare Network. They have all had a major impact on my career path.
What is your favorite book?
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. This is a novel that takes place at a mission hospital in East Africa. Dr. Stone is the lead surgeon at the hospital. There are many references throughout the book that anyone in the medical field would be able to relate to, but the story is so well written that I think anyone would enjoy it.
What is your favorite movie?
Rudy. It’s the ultimate underdog story that teaches you to never give up in pursuit of your dreams.
What is your favorite sports team?
Minnesota Vikings (unfortunately). My dad was a big Vikings fan growing up, and this pretty much rubbed off on my entire family.
What is your favorite vacation spot?
I don’t have a particular favorite vacation spot that I routinely visit. However, Cartagena, Colombia, was by far one of my favorite places I have visited. Whenever I go away on vacation, it’s all about the food. Cartagena did not disappoint.
What is your favorite restaurant?
Ciao Baby, an Italian restaurant where I used to work on Long Island.
Is there a person you’d particularly like to meet?
I would love to meet either Ben Stiller or Adam Sandler. I’ve probably seen every one of their movies.
What is something that most people don’t know about you?
Three months before I started medical school, I was accepted to the New York Police Department. If I was not a doctor, I would have become a police officer.
What is an interesting fact about you?
I’m an identical twin.