Nikita Desai, MD | Cleveland Clinic Pulmonary Medicine

I actually come from a family of doctors. My dad’s a doctor. My little brother just graduated medical school and a lot of doctors in the family. So you might say it’s a little bit the family business, but I felt that it best combined my love of working with people but also being a problem solver and being in a science based field which came naturally to me at the time. So I see patients who are self-referred, also following up with a lung doctor from the hospital. I also see patients that have seen many other lung doctors in the past or even many other disciplines in the past. The challenge with my specialty is that shortness of breath is a very common complaint and shortness of breath can occur from many different organ systems. And so it’s really my job to spend time with the patient to tease out what could be causing the symptoms and to know which tests to order. My job in the intensive care unit is to look at the whole patient and to coordinate all of the organ systems and all of the consultants and disciplines that are working to help make a very sick patient, eventually get better. And then our team continues to follow, at least until they’re out of the danger zone and until they’re on the road to recovery while they’re in the hospital. A lot of times I end up seeing these patients back in my clinic especially if they have lung disease. So seeing them really sick in the hospital and then get better in their clinic a few weeks to months later is one of the best parts of my job.


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