Physician profile: Dr. Akay

Begum Akay, M.D., is a pediatric general and thoracic surgeon, practicing at Beaumont, Royal Oak and Troy. An Indiana native, she went to medical school at the Indiana University School of Medicine and met a friend from Farmington Hills who recommended Beaumont when she was looking at residency programs.

“I wanted something clinically busy and pseudo academic,” Dr. Akay said.

She chose Beaumont for her general surgery residency and decided to specialize in pediatric surgery midway through.

“When looking for jobs, Beaumont became my home,” Dr. Akay said. “I loved the idea of coming back to work with the people who mentored me. The mix between clinical and education was a good mix, and it’s only gotten better.”

Dr. Akay has been with Beaumont for nearly her entire career and serves as the associate program director for the general surgery residency program. She views her work with residents as her most cherished experience as well as serving on the admissions committee of OUWB.

When looking for great candidates, Dr. Akay is looking for someone who is mature, understands what they’re getting into, has medical and research exposure as well as a healthy level of naivety and the enthusiasm to stay positive yet muster the spirit and energy to get through the medical training.

“We do a very good job as a committee in picking students who elevate the class and keep the mission,” Dr. Akay said.

Dr. Akay is a self-reflective physician. The experiences that influence her most are failures. If she makes a mistake, Dr. Akay chooses to learn from it and use it to become a better surgeon. Her successes with complicated cases drive her motivation.

“The influence you have on the patient and family is irreplaceable,” Dr. Akay said.

In her time with Beaumont, Dr. Akay has seen technological advances that have allowed her team to perform more innovative procedures with smaller children and even newborns.

She has become more comfortable with the changes over time and is excited to see the continued evolution of robotic-assisted surgery with children.

“To our knowledge, we’re the only ones doing pediatric robotic surgery in Michigan,” Dr. Akay said.

Specialized surgical services for children are right in Beaumont, Troy’s backyard and includes pediatric anesthesiology, general and thoracic surgery, orthopedic surgery and more.

When she’s not in the office, Dr. Akay enjoys quality time and traveling with her husband, Bryan Zweig, M.D., and their three-year-old son, Cole. Drs. Akay and Zweig are currently expecting their second child in May.

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