Alixandria Pfeiffer, BS, DO
Name: Alixandria Fiore Pfeiffer
Institution: University of Texas San Antonio
Medical School (if applicable): Nova Southeastern University
Residency (if applicable): University of Texas Health San Antonio
Fellowship Training Institution (if applicable): University of Texas Health San Antonio (to start 07/2023)
Personal and Family Background:
Tell us about someone who had an influence on you as child.
My mother had the biggest influence on me as a child. She taught me the importance of faith, resilience, and serving others. These principles profoundly impacted me growing up and ultimately it sparked my passion for medicine.
What was your first job and how did it prepare you for your current position?
My first job was working at an Orthopedic Surgeon's practice in my hometown of Miami, Florida. My time working at the practice revealed to me the inner workings of the patient-physician relationship, the clinical working environment, and brought me exposure to the operating room
Medical Training (if applicable):
Was there a mentor(s) inspired you?
Over the course of my medical training, I have had and still have many mentors that have impacted me deeply in many areas of my career including professionally, socially, and spiritually. One of my mentors who stands out the most is Dr. Ramsey who is our Obstetric Medical Director, here at my residency institution. He is a very well-known and accomplished educator and MFM and is the one who single-handedly propelled me into the world of MFM/SMFM. He helped open many doors without hesitation for me for which I am utterly grateful. I cannot thank him enough for what he has done!
How did the diversity (or lack of diversity) in your medical educators shape your training?
While I have had many extra-ordinary medical educators throughout my training, I would have to say that the diversity of the patient populations that I have worked with have truly shaped my training. Navigating my clinical years of medical school in South Florida greatly impacted my formative thought on healthcare delivery and outreach. As I later moved to South Texas for residency training, my patient population furthered my fuel and passion for medical outreach. It shaped my research interests on maternal transport and future career goals as an MFM. Our underrepresented and minority patients harbor some of the highest risks and acuity in obstetrics and because of my constant exposure to this population in training, I have made it my life goal to continue to serve these women.
MFM Practice (if applicable):
How has your cultural background shaped you as an MFM?
As the daughter of a Haitian immigrant mother, as previously alluded to, I have been exposed to countless and priceless life lessons that have shaped me as a physician and now future MFM. I have had a carnal desire since as long as I can remember to help serve those who are in need and in some of the most vulnerable circumstances. In some ways, this has translated to the dynamic of a high-risk pregnancy, vulnerable mother and unborn child. My Haitian background has heightened and shaped my passion for the improvement to healthcare access and outreach; arenas for which the field of MFM is equally passionate about. Sak Pasé (Haitian Creole phrase). My ‘why’. Throughout my early career, this phrase has kept me grounded and driven to do what I can for others, for the destitute, and for the sick. It has provided self-reflection on my growth as an MFM. It kept me ambitious to be a part of something bigger than myself throughout residency and to not settle for the status quo; to continue to travel down the road less traveled. My background has given me the platform of which I can best advocate for maternal public health reform.
Tell us about one of your most memorable patient encounters.
One of my most memorable encounters that has tied me back to my heritage that spiritually gripped includes a patient who was admitted to our Antepartum service in the periviable period for fetal hydrops. After having had met the patient in the outpatient setting and following her on the ward, I established rapport with the patient. We had conversed over what seemed like everything from her infant’s diagnosis to her life in Haiti. Given that my mother and family are from Haiti, I had grown to establish a deep connection with the patient and it radically transformed my outlook on my future goals. Through this patient, I was able to experience the power of perinatal screening, the sublime influence of high-risk counseling and the unique role of fetal interventions. It is through this relationship where I also understood just how profound of an impact that Maternal-Fetal medicine physicians can have on not only the present maternal-fetal condition but future maternal well-being which can transcend decades
What role has SMFM played in your career?
SMFM has played a tremendous role in my career. I was blessed to have been chosen to be a part of the Foundation for SMFM Resident Scholars in 2022. Because of this program, I was propelled into the absolute depths of SMFM and have learned so much from organized medicine, research, mentorship, and everything in between. The comaraderie I have developed with my fellow cohort members has been so important to me over the last couple of years. The Scholars Program has allowed me to dive deep into SMFM and meet some of our society's most influential. This has impacted my outlook on MFM and fevered my research interests.
In your spare time:
If you had to live one day in your life over and over (think Groundhog Day 1993 Movie), which would you pick?
One day I would live over and over is the day my husband and I found out that we both were moving to San Antonio, TX to pursue our careers/residencies. My husband had matched into Anesthesiology at Brook Army Medical Center and for me, OBGYN at University of Texas San Antonio. It was a beautiful day in South Florida and we were surrounded by our very best friends and family. It was the day that I feel as though all of our hard work and sacrifice had come together, almost as poignant as a fairytale. Our time in San Antonio has been so important for us as a family and as young physicians, more-so than we could have ever imagined.
SMFM Mad Libs:
The best day I ever had as an (MFM) was finding out I was going to be one!