Dr. Resa Lewiss is Director of Point-of-Care Ultrasound and Visiting Professor of EM at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. An espresso aficionado, when she is not working in the department, she is often teaching ultrasound. Dr. Lewiss keeps herself centered with a list of “essentials.” Check these out and how she stays healthy in EM!

  • Name: Resa E. Lewiss
  • Location: Philadelphia, PA
  • Current job(s): Director of Point-of-Care Ultrasound, Visiting Professor of Emergency Medicine Thomas Jefferson University
  • One word that describes how you stay healthy: Predictably unpredictable
  • Primary behavior/activity for de-stressing: Deliberate rest (see Rest by Alex Soojung- Kim Pang)

What are some of the ways you stay healthy?

The Essentials:

  • Art
  • Books
  • Espresso
  • Exercise
  • Food
  • Nature
  • People

What’s your ideal workout?

One that leaves the mind and body muscles a bit sore. Working out helps clear my mind. Once in a while, I am hit with an “Aha” moment.

How do you prepare for a night shift? How do you recover from one?

Pre-shift: I exercise early in the day. I try to make myself tired and hope for a bit of sleep. When I get up, I make believe it’s morning. Shower, espresso, breakfast.

Post-shift: No clear formula for recovery; I await that predictable sub-clinical “viremic” feeling. I have found that recovering takes longer with age.

How do you avoid getting “hangry” (angry due to hunger) on shift?

Avoid sugar. I try to bring food, rather than buy it.

How do you ensure that you are mentally in check?

I resort to my essentials: Art, Books, Espresso, Exercise, Food, Nature, People.

Best advice you have received for maintaining health?

Exercise. Avoid sugar. Drink espresso. Surround yourself with fantastic people. Fiercely protect your time.

Who would you love for us to track down to answer these questions?

Esther Choo
James Li
Brita Zaia

Zafrina Poonja, MD

Zafrina Poonja, MD

Editor, How I Stay Healthy in EM series
Emergency Medicine Resident
University of Alberta
Zafrina Poonja, MD


Emergency Medicine Physician @ Vancouver General Hospital. Assistant Editor @ALiEMteam. Lover of travel, soccer, and boat shoes.