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N E X TG E N ZIAI ‘IN THE ZONE’ IN OR By Troy Patterson Conducting cataract or corneal transplant surgery in an operating room isn't what most people would describe as their “Zen place.” But the University of Ottawa Eye Institute's Dr. Setareh Ziai says it's where she's in the zone, four years into her ophthalmology practice. in the Canadian Medical Association’s national seniors’ strategy, was a panelist for one of the co-developed accredited symposia in June at COS's annual meeting and sits on the physician Sci- entific Advisory Board for the COS/ Canadian Dermatology Association Product Recognition Program. Optical Prism magazine was told about Ziai by the Canadian Ophthal- mological Society (COS) because of her growing list of accomplishments so early in her eyecare career. She does some general ophthalmology, but mostly focuses on corneal diseases, tumours of the ocular surface and more. Originally from Iran, Ziai's parents immigrated to Canada during the 1978-79 Islamic Revolution when she was a child. Toronto was home her en- tire life until she finished her honours bachelor of science degree and went to Ottawa for medical school. “I do all sorts of corneal transplants and some laser eye surgery,” she says. Ziai, who lives in Ottawa, is married to a family physician and the couple has four children. She has been involved 38 Optical Prism | September 2017 “Then I just stayed here for my residency in ophthalmology,” she says. “I was able to match to the choice I wanted, so I stayed in Ottawa and I've been here ever since other than my fellowship training, which I went back to Toronto for, where I learned from some of my Toronto-area corneal mentors.” Ziai says those mentors swayed her towards working with corneal diseases, corneal transplants and the ocular surface. She said one of her mentors left the eye institute, which then allowed her to “step into his gigantic shoes.” Surgery had been a clear goal for her early on in medical school, but she didn't switch her specialty to ophthal- mology until later in her training. “I love being in the operating room. I found that time went by really fast any time I was in an operating room and that was a good sign,” Ziai says. “I very much appreciate the finesse of the surgery, the cleanliness of the sur- gery and of course, the extraordinary outcomes for these patients.” She says everyone takes vision for granted until something happens to their sight. Ziai says she's able to see