A Dialogue with Dr. Kieran Murphy in the 10th Scientific Meeting of Chinese Society of Interventional Radiology (CSIR)

Published: 2013-01-16


Interviewee: Kieran Murphy, MD, PhD, Department of Medical Imaging, University of Toronto, Fitzgerald Building, Room 112, 150 College St., Toronto, ON, Canada

This is an interview with Dr. Kieran Murphy, an honorable member of Chinese Society of Interventional Radiology. The interview simply presents the highlight of the 10th CSIR, the future development of interventional radiology, and points out the aspect that China should especially focus on.

Murphy is professor and vice chair, director of Research, University of Toronto and deputy chief of Medical Imaging, University Health Network, MSH and Women’s Hospital Faculty of Medicine, Ontario, Canada. As a prolific inventor in brain and spine imaging and intervention, his favorite inventions of his own include: hand-held disposable ozone generator, the density and drug-eluting coronary stent design and the use of parathyroid hormone systemically in pulsed doses to integrate bone cement.. He has made tremendous achievements in the use of imaging techniques to guide surgical intervention.


  1. Q: Dr. Murphy, what do you think is the highlight of CSIR?
    A: I think it is a brilliant achievement to see the rapid growth of the society over ten years. We’ve done a really good job working together. You can see different people in the society, the friends collaborating and training good people. The average is very young and there is a lot of energy here and there will be a really good powerful society that will make major future contributions.
  2. Q: What do you think will take the leading role in the future development of interventional radiology?
    A: I think there will be a mixture of things. Because of the smoking in China, there will be a need for oncology, interventional radiology, combining molecular imaging with interventional radiology.
  3. Q: What do you think is the biggest challenge in the future development of interventional radiology?
    A: Um, you know, I think everything is gonna be good. Certainly, there is a need for investment in good equipment. But I don’t see many challenges. It’s really a question of good science to prove that we’re doing the right thing.
  4. Q: In which aspects regarding interventional radiology that China needs to pay more attention to?
    A: It ought to response to the society’s needs and society here has a problem with the risk of cancer developing. So it should response to the need for more cancer care and the big need is for cancer screening, as you look for breast cancer screening, lung cancer screening, colorectal screening related to smoking and environmental risk factors. And then I have already responded to look after those patients.
  5. Q: I notice that you have extensive medical volunteering work, including founding a primary Health Care Clinic at the Tibetan refugee in southern India. Why do you think it’s important and what would you like to say to get more people involved in the medical volunteering work?
    A: I think it’s important for your experience, to also realize how lucky you are. But it also teaches you to improvise. When you have to find a solution and you do not have a lot of options, you have to improvise. Learning how to improvise is very useful.  Sometimes we forget why we became doctors. To do these things to remind how lucky you are. We have the skills that are needed all over the world. It’s important to give it back. One way is to educate. Because in that way you can have conversations that you couldn’t have anywhere else and you could inspire people to do different things. That’s the whole world of mentorship and mentorship is very important.