Meet a Specialist: Jennifer Setlur, M.D.

Dr. Setlur

Dr. Jennifer Setlur, a board-certified, pediatric otolaryngologist at Mass. Eye and Ear, Concord, became interested in medicine very early in life, when she was only about six years old. “Growing up, my father was an anesthesiologist. I was always interested in his work, but had trouble grasping exactly what he did. That changed when my father demonstrated how anesthesia works on a bullfrog in our backyard! He anesthetized the frog and cut it open, so I could see how ‘putting someone to sleep’ really worked. I saw that the frog was alive, that its heart was beating and that its lungs were pumping, and I was instantly fascinated,” Dr. Setlur recalls. “My interest in studying living things progressed from that point forward.”

Dr. Setlur’s decision to specialize in pediatric otolaryngology occurred later, during her residency at SUNY Upstate Medical Center. “Children are so resilient and are able to overcome huge obstacles at such young ages. Being able to help children overcome these obstacles and thrive in their lives, really appealed to me,” she remarks.

As the newest member of the Mass. Eye and Ear, Concord team, Dr. Setlur treats pediatric and adult patients suffering from a variety of ear, nose, throat, head and neck issues. Fellowship trained in pediatric otolaryngology, she enjoys the challenges that come with treating this wide range of patients in the Concord community. Dr. Setlur explains, “I often treat infants who are having difficulty breathing or feeding, and children who are suffering from congenital problems, developmental issues or the effects of a traumatic event. I also treat adults and children for more routine ear, nose and throat issues, such as hearing problems or sinus conditions.”

Dr. Setlur stresses that she always attempts to maximize non-invasive procedures and medical therapies for patients, before recommending more complex surgery. “In many instances, by the time a patient sees me, he or she has already exhausted most medical therapies, and so the best course of treatment is surgery,” Dr. Setlur says. “The type of surgery I perform varies from routine procedures, such as pediatric ear tube placements, to complex procedures such as removing congenital masses of the head and neck.” In other instances, Dr. Setlur is able to change or adjust patients’ medications as a course of treatment. Dr. Setlur notes, “Treatment programs vary extensively, and really depend on each patient’s unique condition. No matter what course of treatment we use, I always want to make sure that the patient and parents are comfortable and prepared for the treatment plan.”

In addition to treating pediatric and adult patients in Concord, Dr. Setlur is involved in an exciting new research program taking place at Mass. Eye and Ear. “We recently joined a multi-center trial, which will explore ENT surgical simulation as a teaching tool for residents,” Dr. Setlur explains. “We hope to expand teaching methods through simulation, to help determine if residents are able to competently perform specific procedures. This could be a great new way to become more effective teachers,” she remarks. The trial will begin in early 2015, starting with the routine procedure of ear tube placement. Hopefully, it will eventually expand to include more complex ENT procedures.

As a specialist at Mass. Eye and Ear, Concord, Dr. Setlur is focused on building strong relationships with both patients and physicians. She has led meetings with a number of pediatricians in the Concord area and presented to physicians at community hospitals. “Meeting community pediatricians face-to-face has been incredibly helpful so far,” Dr. Setlur notes. “Physicians care deeply for their patients’ well-being; they want to be assured that their patients will be in good hands.”

Dr. Setlur is also focused on building strong relationships with patients and their families. She mentions, “Word of mouth plays a huge role in how patients and parents find me. It is so rewarding to meet families who have been referred to us, because they had a positive experience at Mass. Eye and Ear.”

Dr. Setlur concludes, “I want families to know that Mass. Eye and Ear, Concord is truly a community practice. We do everything we can to provide treatment close to home and to make the process as comfortable and convenient as possible for families. Our team is able to provide flexibility and ease of access for our patients. We strive to provide outstanding care in the community, day after day.”

Contact Dr. Setlur’s office at 978-369-8780.

View Dr. Setlur’s online bio for more information.

Request an appointment.