Physician Photo

May C. Pian-Smith, MD

  • Phone: 617-724-9483
Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine
Clinical Interests
Obstetric anesthesia
Anesthesia simulator training
Hypertension management
Regional anesthesia
Boston: Massachusetts General Hospital
Medical Education
MD, SUNY at Stony Brook School of Medicine
Residency, Brigham and Women's Hospital
Board Certifications
Anesthesiology, American Board of Anesthesiology
Patient Age Group
Accepting New Patients
Accepting New Patients

BiographyMy clinical specialty is obstetric anesthesia. Much of my clinical work and investigation centers on improving the health care of women, but within that realm, projects have spanned a wide spectrum from studying markers of endothelial dysfunction in pre-eclamptics to the role of alternative therapies for the management of menopausal symptoms.

In addition to enjoying the fruits of direct patient care, my work at HMS has provided wonderful opportunities to help shape the future of our specialty through innovations in education, including:

  • Developing techniques to engage the adult learner
  • Promoting deliberate practice and personal reflection in medical training
  • Using simulation to create controlled and experiential learning opportunities<
  • Promotion of patient safety practices through improved communication and interdisciplinary collaboration
  • A leadership role in the recruitment of our trainees, with the goal of enhancing an extraordinary, talented and diverse community
  • Tangible ways to contribute to the support, development and retention of talented and diverse faculty in the HMS community at large


Research Areas

  • Medical Education
  • Patient Safety
  • Simulation
  • Obstetric Anesthesia

Description of Research

I am interested in developing, studying and assessing innovative teaching modalities for adult learners, primarily with simulation-based exercises, theories based in organizational behavior, and with web-based technology. Improving the effectiveness of our learning creates opportunities for further exploration and creativity; it improves our communication, teamwork, professional satisfaction and ultimately the quality of our patient care.

My clinical research has been centered on improving our care of obstetric patients, including high-risk patients with preeclampsia, cardiomyopathy and other co-existing illnesses. I am also developing interdisciplinary and multi-institutional patient safety initiatives and studying the effects of different types of drills, use of check-lists, etc.

In all aspects of my work I take great pride and pleasure in mentoring residents, fellows and junior faculty with case reports and research projects. They have had opportunities to present their work at national and international meetings, and to prepare manuscripts for publication.

PublicationsView publications

Safe delivery

For Dan Drzymalski, MD, Shiqian Shen, MD, and May Pian-Smith, MD, physicians in the MGH Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, relieving pain is their calling – a calling that recently took them overseas.

Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114-2696

Phone: 617-724-9483
Fax: 617-724-9485