Medical School: University of Baghdad, Iraq
Residency: Capital Health, NJ
Dr. Najjar grew up in Baghdad, Iraq and studied medicine at the University of Baghdad. He moved to the United States on a Fulbright scholarship to complete a master degree in public health with a concentration in epidemiology at the University of Kentucky. Before residency, he worked in clinical research at Washington University in St Louis. His research focuses on using bioinformatics tools such as RNA-seq to study autoimmune disease. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, playing tennis, and long-exposure photography.
"The interview was thoughtfully planned so I had the opportunity to discuss my research interests with faculty working in similar fields. I was also impressed by the scope of research infrastructure both inside and outside the rheumatology division. Additionally, I sensed that the culture was welcoming and encouraging."
"I am extremely happy with my choice to become a rheumatologist. For me, an enjoyable part of practicing medicine is making diagnoses and because we deal with rare diseases, it is even more important to thoughtfully consider different possibilities and assign appropriate probabilities to how likely a certain disease is, sometimes in the midst of uncertainty. In addition, the field of rheumatology has promising research opportunities as new technologies in biology lead to a better understanding of autoimmunity."