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Department of Otolaryngology adds 3 new Pediatric ENTs

The Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Otolaryngology more than doubled the size of its Division of Pediatric Otolaryngology with the addition of three new physicians.

Matthew Partain, MD, Philip Rosen, MD, and Lauren Sowa, MD, joined the department this past fall—all as assistant professors of clinical otolaryngology—head and neck surgery. The pediatric otolaryngology physicians offer clinical care to children and their families at Riley Hospital for Children in downtown Indianapolis as well as at IU Health North in Carmel.

Each of the new faculty members come to the department after completing fellowships. Partain studied at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary/Harvard Medical School; Rosen studied at Children’s of Alabama Hospital; and Sowa studied at the University of Colorado.

Since 2019, the Department of Otolaryngology has added 11 new faculty physicians and two scientists to the now 30-faculty team. The department has also continued to rise in nationally recognized Ear, Nose and Throat care, according to the U.S. News and World Report 2021-22 Best Hospitals Rankings. It’s the highest ranked adult specialty at IU Health.

We spoke with the pediatric otolaryngology trio to learn more about them.

Matthew Partain, MD

Why did you choose the field of otolaryngology?

During my third year of medical school, I felt pulled toward otolaryngology through my clinical interests and the interactions I had with the otolaryngology department residents and staff while at Loyola University. I was certain that I wanted to pursue a career in pediatric otolaryngology by the time I finished my rotation during my third year of residency. Working with children instinctively and inherently pushes me to want to be a better doctor every single day more than anywhere else inside (or outside) the hospital.

What drew you to IU School of Medicine?

Coming to IU School of Medicine was an opportunity to care exclusively for children at a tertiary care hospital with all the resources I could ever need clinically as well as from a research standpoint. I had the chance to join a group of well-known and established ENTs that would be able to mentor me and help me grow as a young attending. Teaching and working with residents was always a dream of mine, and I get to do it here. I am from the Midwest, so it was also an opportunity to be closer to friends and family. Indianapolis has been amazing so far, and I am very grateful that IU offered me this position.

What is your otolaryngology specialty? What are your research and clinical focuses?

I am fellowship trained in pediatric otolaryngology. My research is focused on outcomes in airway reconstruction and endoscopic ear surgery. Clinically, I enjoy all aspects of pediatric otolaryngology, but these are my main interests: minimally invasive endoscopic ear surgery; ear drum perforations; cochlear implantation; cholesteatoma; aerodigestive problems; tracheostomy management; airway reconstruction; sialorrhea; trisomy 21; sleep apnea; hypoglossal nerve stimulator; 22q11 deletion syndrome.


Philip Rosen, MD

Why did you choose the field of otolaryngology?

I fell in love with the field of otolaryngology because almost everything we treat has some implications on how we, as humans, interact with the world. Whether it’s improving someone's hearing to listen to their favorite music or augmenting their voice to help them speak, most of the work I do helps my patients navigate and enjoy the world!

What drew you to IU School of Medicine?

IU School of Medicine drew me in when I was searching for a new job. The people and staff here are some of the friendliest and hardest working I have ever met! IU School of Medicine has a great culture of inclusion and diversity, and the opportunity to be part of that while taking care of children and educating future doctors was too good to pass.

What is your otolaryngology specialty? What are your research and clinical focuses?

Pediatric Otolaryngology—pediatric hearing loss, chronic ear disease, microtia repair, otoplasty, sinonasal disease, complex pediatric airway disease.


Lauren Sowa, MD

Why did you choose the field of otolaryngology?

I chose the field of otolaryngology because—aside from being interested in surgery and loving head and neck anatomy—I loved that a great deal of what we treat has a profound effect on a person's quality of life. To be able to alter or improve someone's ability to hear, breathe, swallow, smell or speak was fascinating to me; when I had the chance to experience this in the pediatric population, I knew I had found my niche.

What drew you to IU School of Medicine?

I was drawn to IU School of Medicine because of the abundance of caring, kind and talented physicians in the Department of Otolaryngology and the amazing resources that the university has to offer to support a growing department.

What is your otolaryngology specialty? What are your research and clinical focuses?

My specialty is pediatric otolaryngology with a specific focus on cleft/craniofacial care, pediatric thyroid disease, pediatric sinus disease and sleep surgery. My prior research has focused on recurrent croup, post-tonsillectomy pain management and the impact of hearing on speech/language development. I would love to continue these while also remaining open to expanding my focus as I develop in my career.

The views expressed in this content represent the perspective and opinions of the author and may or may not represent the position of Indiana University School of Medicine.
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Ben Middelkamp

Ben Middelkamp is a communications manager for the Department of Neurology, Department of Neurological Surgery and Stark Neurosciences Research Institute at Indiana University School of Medicine. Before joining the Office of Strategic Communications in December 2019, Ben spent nearly six years as a newspaper reporter in two Indiana cities. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Convergent Journalism from Indiana Wesleyan University in 2014. Ben enjoys translating his background in journalism to the communications and marketing needs of the school and its physicians and researchers.