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Dr. Paul Gryzenia: Using laser energy and freezing tumors all in a day’s work

Using laser energy to cauterize damaged veins or using needles to freeze a tumor is all in a day’s work for Dr. Paul Gryzenia and other interventional radiology and vascular specialists at Corewell Health East hospitals and the Grosse Pointe Beaumont Vein Center.

That doesn’t mean it’s lost its specialness for the doctor, however.

“I do believe that it is very cool and it's novel,” Dr. Gryzenia said.

Dr. Gryzenia is the chief of Radiology and an interventional and diagnostic radiology specialist in Grosse Pointe. He's also affiliated with Corewell Health East hospitals in Royal Oak and Troy.

He graduated from Wayne State University School of Medicine and completed his residency and fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School. However, he didn’t always want to be a physician.

His first degree was in computer science at the University of Michigan, which now feels “totally unbelievable,” he said.

“Looking back on it, all my contemporaries in computer science are probably retired now with their yachts and their private islands,” he joked. “But you know what, I honestly, via a very circuitous route, figured out that I love the mix of technology and medicine."

He wanted to mix computer science and medicine to help people, which is what he does now. Specifically, when it comes to his Vein Center work, Dr. Gryzenia said there are millions of patients who have venous disease, describing it as an “underdiagnosed and undertreated disease process.”

If venous disease is left untreated, it can progress into much more serious conditions, including veins clotting, decreased ambulation and decreased quality of life. At the Vein Center, team members are very subspecialized with high catheter and ultrasound skill sets, allowing them to take care of very complex patients.

His Vein Center work is part of what he does, but the depth of his practice is “pretty immense” including almost all organ systems.

His daily schedule could include a lung biopsy, mesenteric arteriogram with stenting, draining someone’s lung and then a kidney biopsy. Later in the week, he might do a cryoablation, where he puts needles into a tumor to freeze it, causing cellular death and allowing the patient to go home the same day with tiny punctures and small bandages on their back.

“The variety is wide,” he said. “Just a million different areas in medicine that we can cover. Which I think is one of the most satisfying parts, besides helping people."

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