OUWB student assists OB-GYN father with delivery

Laurel Kraus, Managing Editor

Fourth-year Oakland University William Beaumont (OUWB) student Sara Dykowski obtained what many would label a unique experience, when in February of 2018, she was able to assist her father in the c-section delivery of a baby.

Despite being raised by Mark Dykowski M.D., Obstetrics & Gynecology, Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak., she does not consider this to be the defining factor in her decision to enter the field.

“I don’t think he was necessarily the spark plug for me wanting to go into medicine, but he is definitely one of my role models,” Sara said.

She credits this instead to her experiences with medical professionals during various high school softball injuries as well as an interest in helping others.

“I’ll always remember, I tried to get her to be a PA [physician assistant] because the schedule can be a little more flexible for a PA, and she said ‘no dad, I want to be the one who makes the decisions,’” Mark said.

Mark, who started at Beaumont in 1983 as a first year resident, had been eagerly awaiting Sara’s six-week residency in his unit since she chose OUWB.

“When I knew Sara was going to be going to Oakland, we started almost immediately ‘oh my gosh there’s going to be a time when I get to do a delivery with her,’” he said. “And the nurses around labor and delivery, the residents, we were all filled with anticipation.”

Her father’s reputation somewhat preceded her as even during her first surgery in that residency, she worked with people whose babies Mark had delivered including the nurse anesthetist, the OR nurse and two kids each for the surgeon and anesthesiologist.

When the day came for the Sara to assist her father with a delivery, the parents were among those excited.

“When the patient came in for the postpartum visit at six weeks, it was ‘oh that was so much fun having your daughter there, that was so special,’” Mark said.

To the father and daughter, it will be a memory they share forever.

“It was neat to be able to see what he [Mark] does firsthand, and I think it was just a really special experience for both of us,” Sara said.

Mark reported he is now close to completing the goals he had before retirement. These include reaching 6,000 deliveries, which he did in November, doing a delivery with Sara and putting the doctoral hood on her when she graduates next May.

While Sara enjoyed her OB-GYN residency, she does not plan for it to be her career path. Instead her interest lies with physical medicine and rehab which is what she is currently doing.

Her next goal is to match into residency and perhaps after that pursue a fellowship or look at academic medicine or global health opportunities.

She would also someday like to work in both in-patient and some out-patient.

“I want to help people achieve their health goals and work with them,” Sara said. “Being able to continue studying science and being a lifelong learner, that kind of all led me to pursue medicine.”