We acknowledge that the UBC Vancouver campus is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam).

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

Meet Our Alumni: Andrew Thamboo, MHSc

At A Glance: Andrew’s Career Path – hover here

What did the MHSc give you?

The degree honed my skills in study design and statistics, allowing me to form studies that are more scientifically sound.

What advice to you have for current students and recent graduates?

The MHSc is valuable in many fields, you can use the skillset anywhere, and expand. It’s completely doable to balance your clinical work and the Masters workload.

Interesting Fact

The surgical treatment I use for removing facial tumours is inspired by the mummification process in Ancient Egypt.

Until recently, Empty Nose Syndrome didn’t exist. Now, thanks to Dr. Andrew Thamboo and his research, patients with the condition are finally getting the validation and help they need. Dr. Thamboo and his colleagues were able to take an unknown condition they kept encountering in many individual patients, and translate their questions into research and evidence-based solutions that are now being applied across the world.

“Now physicians across the world are doing procedures to help these patients”
MHSc alumni Dr. Andrew Thamboo

Dr. Thamboo credits the Master of Health Science (MHSc) program with helping him to launch his career. He began as a medical student at UBC, and a resident in Otolaryngology (Head and Neck Surgery). After his second year as a resident, he realized that he wanted to be a better researcher, and the MHSc program at SPPH was a great opportunity. The MHSc gave Dr. Thamboo the skills and knowledge he was looking for, but also allowed him to build a strong network to advance his career post-residency.
The MHSc helped to hone his research skills, teaching him the ability to interpret data and form meaningful conclusions, conduct sound studies, and communicate with seasoned statisticians. While Dr. Thamboo was in the program, he was using the knowledge gained from his coursework and implementing it in his role as a resident. This helped him become a productive and respected researcher – and also opened doors to great career opportunities.

“With the MHSc, I became a lot more marketable – you’re a surgeon, but with a research background.”
MHSc alumni Dr. Andrew Thamboo

After graduating from the UBC residency program in 2015, Dr. Thamboo was accepted to a highly coveted Rhinology and Skull Base Fellowship at Stanford University, where he was also a Clinical Instructor in Stanford’s Division of Rhinology and Endoscopic Skull Base Surgery. It was at Stanford where Dr. Thamboo first began his research on Empty Nose Syndrome. He also kept his connections to patients, including treating patients with sinus issues and including surgically managing chronic sinusitis or removing tumours.

Andrew Thamboo

MHSc alumni Dr. Andrew Thamboo at work in the Stanford Sinus Center

“Having this skill set is unique and fun.”
MHSc alumni Dr. Andrew Thamboo

Interestingly, tumors are removed through the nose, a surgery inspired by the mummification process in Ancient Egypt, which has improved outcomes compared with historical methods of removing tumours via incisions on the face, including less recovery time required for patients, and less trauma.
Today, Dr. Thamboo continues to make a big impact as Research Director at St. Paul’s Sinus Centre and as an Assistant Clinical Professor with UBC’s Faculty of Medicine in the Department of Surgery. He is a recent recipient of a Michael Smith Foundation Health Investigator Award for his continued research of Empty nose syndrome. Dr. Thamboo continues to see patients, helping them to manage chronic sinusitis and sinonasal tumors. He wants “to make sure that when patients do come to St. Paul’s that they’re getting cutting edge research and clinical treatment.”

“[Patients] appreciate when you actually understand research and how it impacts them.”
MHSc alumni Dr. Andrew Thamboo

Reflecting on the MHSc, Dr. Thamboo is grateful for the support of the faculty and the time that they invested in helping him become a better researcher. He liked that the program offered him different course options, so that he could pick what was most relevant for his needs and goals. And, of course, his memories from the program include the “game changing” Mike Marin, who made the complicated subject of statistics understandable, and Professors Aslam Anis and Jane Buxton’s classes.

Learn more about Dr. Thamboo’s experience and why he choose the MHSc program:

Click here to return to the Careers and Alumni page