Chronicles of an Extreme ENT

Bama Ears recently had an opportunity to talk to a local ENT who’s been giving more than the gift of sound to his patients. This doctor with an ironic name, Dr. Audie Woolley, has recently co-founded The Alabama School for the Hearing, and is Medical Director of the Cochlear Implant Program at Children’s Hospital. He’s performed just over 280 cochlear implant surgeries and over 50 BAHA surgeries. He’s also written numerous manuscripts for scientific journals as well as various other publications.

But this doctor is also a professor in his field. He says he loves teaching the residents. He notes that giving them the tricks of his trade and sharing his experience will benefit these new doctors and allow them to help more patients than he himself will ever come in contact with. But what we found out is he’s sharing more than his wisdom inside the O.R. Though he wouldn’t admit to belting out a solo performance, he does admit that music is a big part of his life, and enjoys hearing it during his many hours spent each week in the operating room. Whether he’s providing a child with a surgically implanted hearing device, performing atresia surgery (no ear canals), or any other head/neck surgery such as tracheotomies, cyst and tumor excisions and a variety of other surgical procedures in the field of otology and otolaryngology, music is likely playing in the background.

He tells us that one of his sons, 20 year-old Alex who is a percussionist and keyboard player, is actually his favorite musician. Alex is in the process of transferring colleges so he can pursue his dream of entering the music business. But what do you think a Texas born doctor would listen to while he’s actually giving our deaf children the possibility to hear music? Here’s what he told Bama Ears:
“Depending on the case, I choose the music anything from mellow to rock. I love Dave Matthews, Ryan Adams, The Fray, Counting Crows, Sugarland, U2 and the old classics REM, Zeppelin, James Taylor, Jackson Brown, really too numerous to name.”

We just had to ask since he’s so musically driven, but we were disappointed to find out he does not hold any karaoke titles or line dancing championships (yet!). Though he’s not too interested in the line dancing, he does tell us that being a Texas native, he claims to have a mean two-step. If anyone has video evidence of this, Bama Ears will be glad to accept the footage!!

We also asked if he could name one Kelly Clarkson song. He could not, but he is quite familiar with Carrie Underwood’s music. Let’s not assume he’s an avid American Idol fan like many of us are, but he is a music fan. Though he’s heard the name Miley Cyrus, he could not give us her television alter ego of Hannah Montana. We did not deduct any points off for that! After all, he is a grown man and not a five year old little girl, though he does have a dancing and singing daughter Emme who is eight years old. You’ll read more about her and the rest of his family in a future post.

It’s quite apparent that his residents are benefiting from his wisdom, his music, and his humor as well. Practical jokes are quite common from this ENT. There are more stories to come about this Alabama surgeon in future articles. In our next chapter of Chronicles of an Extreme ENT, you’ll find out why we call him Extreme….

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I'm Donna, one of the secretaries at Pediatric ENT/Children's Hospital and I have always called Dr. Woolley .... SUPER Surgeon! He's the best! I look forward to reading his chronicals.