We are so fortunate to have such a supportive Endodontic Department and Dr. Sarao and our faculty seamlessly manage and treat out patients and students with great respect and compassion. Having graduated from dental school in 1998 in India, Dr. Sarao followed his 10 years of experience with further training at our International Student Program and then specialized in Endodontics at Virginia Commonwealth University. “You have to be 100% sure that this is what you want to do…” he says to students considering Endodontics. The most rewarding part of Endo is that he can get the patients out of pain. Patients coming for help because they can’t sleep at night, or go to school, or go to work—they need to be out of pain and get back to their normal lives. Being able to get patients out of pain is very rewarding. “I think as a specialist there is never a dull moment. The challenges in Endodontic specialty begin with the test of your diagnostic abilities required to put together different pieces of the puzzle. The most challenging aspect is the compassionate handling of a terrified patient in severe pain with preconceived fears for root canal therapy…In my experience, successfully managing these patients has been more satisfying than being able to locate a Middle-mesial canal.” When asked about advising students interested in Endodontics, Dr. Sarao emphasizes the need for students to take initiative. “Become a student member of the American Association of Endodontists, it’s just $50. Try to attend the annual session of AAE—it’ll give you a broader perspective of the Endodontic Specialty.” Externships, gaining more experience on ACTS, and mentorship are also invaluable to the student pursuing Endo Residency.
Dr. Sarao is also proud to share that all aspects of Endodontics are based on sound evidence-based principles. From the #2 cotton pellet for cold tests, to microscope technique, “most procedures have been tested with stringent research criteria.” He also notes “there is an ongoing effort to unfold the mysteries of yet unknown phenomenon and improve upon the existing outcome of Endodontic therapy.”
To conclude, Dr. Sarao shares some advice reminding students to “take a moment to count your blessings and realize how your clinical skills can help restore a smile on so many faces. It’s worth your dedicated hard work!” Thank you for your dedication and hard work, Dr. Sarao!
For students interested in Endodontic Research, please feel free to contact Dr. Sarao and the Endodontics Department.