AEUS Resident Spotlight

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Samantha Chao, MD

Chief Resident and PGY-4

University of Michigan and Trinity Health Ann Arbor Hospital

What is your proudest ultrasound moment and/or save?

My proudest ultrasound moment and/or save occurred with a patient in her forties who visited the day after an upper GI endoscopy for chest pain. When I walked into the room, she was sitting bolt upright in the stretcher, appearing extremely sweaty and uncomfortable. Intuitively, I put a probe on and discovered cardiac tamponade. I will never forget the shock and delight I experienced in that moment. This case also reminds me of how ultrasound augments my clinical practice and makes me a better doctor.

Who is your emergency ultrasound hero, and what inspired you to choose them?

My emergency ultrasound hero is Dr. Nik Theyyunni at the University of Michigan. Every day, I strive to understand anatomy, physiology, and physics to the extent that Nik does. I've watched him save some extremely sick patients because of how rock solid his fund of knowledge is, and I can only hope to emulate a fraction of that competence for my future.

What do you predict will be the next significant development in emergency ultrasound?

The next significant development in emergency ultrasound, in my prediction, revolves around the inspiring insights shared by Dr. Enyo Ablordeppey from Washington University during a grand rounds session at our program. I have become a convert to the use of ultrasound confirmation for central line placement. In the future I would love to see this practice more universally utilized.

What's your next big career goal or aspiration?

My dream job is to work in the emergency department while also having dedicated time to work as a clinical ethicist. My ongoing career aspiration is to explore how clinical ethics can be applied within emergency medicine and to share this knowledge within the institutions I work at and on a national level.

What additional information would you like people to know about you?

I'd like people to know that I am a big fan of Dr. Michael Gottlieb from Rush University Medical Center and his impressive ultrasound research output.

Past Resident Spotlight Honorees


  • Jonathan Warren, MD


    Jonathan Warren is currently a third year resident at the Harbor-UCLA department of Emergency Medicine and a medical education fellow at the David Geffen School of Medicine. He has a profound interest in ultrasound education and outside of residency, you will find him editing Art of Emergency Medicine, an online art blog and wellness education source for those in emergency medicine. In his free time, Jonathan enjoys hiking, photography, and spending time with his wife and puppy.

  • Dr. Whitney Brown
    Whitney Brown, MD

    Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

    Winner - AEUS Innovation Award

    Dr. Brown is a third-year resident in the Johns Hopkins Emergency Medicine residency program. During her fourth year of residency, she looks forward to completing a mini-fellowship in emergency ultrasound, and is enthusiastic about creating content to support POCUS educators and learners. Upon the completion of her residency training in 2024, Whitney hopes to translate the skill and expertise acquired in point-of-care ultrasound into a leadership role in her future practice setting. Outside of her academic pursuits, Whitney enjoys traveling with her husband and taking her Goldendoodle to the park.

Phong Huynh, MD

Dr. Phong Huynh is a PGY-3 resident at New York-Presbyterian Emergency Medicine Residency with an enthusiasm for point-of-care ultrasound. He was tasked to formulate an education conference day based on a focused theme and chose the utilization of point-of-care ultrasound in critical patients. Phong coordinated efforts with ultrasound and simulation faculty to create a dynamic hands-on learning experience for learners of varying stages. The whole day was gamified to illicit the inherent competitive spirit to enhance learning. Residents who returned to their clinical shifts after the learning session actually incorporated the learning objectives which translated to saving the life of a patient with massive pulmonary embolism.