Ramasubramanian Kalpatthi, MD

  • Visiting Associate Professor of Pediatrics
  • Director of Pediatric Sickle Cell Research, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

Administative Assistant: Ashley Kosarich

Dr. Ramasubramanian (“Ram”) Kalpatthi serves as the Clinical Research Director of Pediatric Sickle Cell program and Director of PHO Medical Student and Resident Education. He is nationally recognized for his excellence in the clinical care, clinical research, program development and leadership in the field of pediatric hematology oncology with special emphasis on sickle cell disease (SCD) and immune thrombocytopenia (ITP). Also, he is a favorite among medical students, residents, and fellows due to his passion for teaching, guiding and mentoring future generation of physicians.

SCD affects primarily the African-American population, an underserved and socio-economically disadvantaged population in the United States. Though this disease has been recognized for more than 100 years, there have been very few treatment options developed, until recently. Several multi-center clinical trials in SCD have been conducted in the last two decades which have revolutionized the care of SCD, improving the opportunities for survival into adulthood for the majority of pediatric SCD patients in the USA. Dr. Kalpatthi’s other area of clinical expertise, ITP, is the most common cause of thrombocytopenia in children, affecting all races. Though most children with ITP go into spontaneous remission, about 10-15% of children and adolescents develop chronic refractory ITP with significant bleeding complications, limiting their participation in sports and contributing to poor quality of life. Management of these patients is complex and requires an individualized approach. Dr. Kalpatthi served as a co-investigator in several key multicenter clinical trials in both areas notably in the landmark hydroxyurea trial in young children with SCD (BABY HUG) and has made multiple other significant scholarly contributions in these areas.

Dr. Kalpatthi has mentored medical students, residents, and fellows in completing clinical research projects that have been published and/or presented at national conferences such as the American Society of Hematology (ASH), the American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology (ASPHO) and Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) meeting. Several of his mentees received outstanding abstract achievement awards for their work and most of his mentees have published their research in leading medical journals.

Professional and Scientific Society Memberships 

  • American Academy of Pediatrics, 1999-2016 
  • Children’s Oncology Group, 2006-2017 
  • American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, 2006-Present 
  • American Society of Hematology, 2006-Present 

Education & Training

  • MD, Thanjavur Medical College, 1996
  • Board Eligible, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, 1999
  • Board Eligible, Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center, 2003
  • Board Eligible, Nationwide Children's Hospital, 2006

Selected Publications

Lesher AP, Kalpatthi R, Glenn JB, Jackson SM, Hebra A. Outcome of splenectomy in children less than four years of age with sickle cell disease. J Pediatr Surg 2009; 44: 1 134-8. 

Thompson BW, Rogers ZR, Miller ST, Rees RC, Ware RE, Waclawiw MA, Iyer RV, Casella JF, Luchtman-Jones L, Rana S, Thornburg CD, Kalpatthi RV, Barredo JC, Brown RC, Sarnaik S, Howard TH, Luck L, Wang WC. The Pediatric Hydroxyurea Phase 111 Clinical Trial (BAB Y HUG) Design. Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2010; 54: 250-5. 

Pavlakis SG, Rees RC, Huang X, Brown RC, Casella JF, Iyer RV, Kalpatthi R, Luden J, Miller SC, Rogers ZR, Thornburg CD, Wang WC, Adams RJ for the BABY HUG Investigators. Transcranial Doppler Ultrasonography (TCD) in Infants with Sickle Cell Anemia: Baseline Data from the BABY HUG Trial. Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2010; 54: 256-9. 

*Kane I, Ragucci D, Shatat I, Bussel JB, Kalpatthi R. Comparison of Intravenous Immune Globulin and High Dose Anti-D Immune Globulin as Initial Therapy for Childhood Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura. Br J Haematol. 2010; 149: 79-83. 

Kalpatthi R, Kane I, Shatat I, Rackoff E, Disco D, Jackson SM. Clinical Events after Splenectomy in Children with Sickle Cell Anemia. Pediatr Surg Int. 2010; 26: 495-500. 

Becton L, Kalpatthi R, Racltoff E, Disco D, Orak J, Jackson SM, Shatat IF. Prevalence and Risk Factors of Microalbuminuria in Children with Sickle Cell Disease.  Pediatr Nephrol. 2010; 25: 1505-11. 

*Brown E, Ragucci D, Kalpatthi R. Perioral and facial parasthesias associated with intravenous pentamidine use for pneumocystis prophylaxis. Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2010; 27: 658-60. 

Kalpatthi R, Peters B, Kane I, Holloman D, Rackoff D, Disco D, Jackson S, Laver JH, Abboud MR. Safety and Efficacy of High Dose Intravenous Desferrioxamine for Reduction of Iron Overload due to Chronic Transfusion in Sickle Cell Patients. Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2010; 55: 1338-42. 

McCarville MB, Luo Z, Huang X, Rees RC, Rogers ZR, Kalpatthi R, Miller ST, Thompson BW, Wang WC. Abdominal Ultrasound Findings in Infants with Sickle Cell Anemia: Baseline Data from the BABY HUG Trial. Am J Roentgenol 2011; 196: 1399-1404. 

Wang WC, Ware RE, Miller ST, Iyer RV, Casella JF, Minniti CP, Rana S, Thornburg CD, Rogers ZR, Kalpatthi R, Barredo JC, Brown RC, Sarnaik SA, Howard TH, Wynn LW, Kutlar A, Armstrong DF, Files BA, Goldsmith JC, Huang X, Thompson BW. A Multicenter Phase III Trial of Hydroxyurea in Young Children with Sickle Cell Anemia (BABY HUG). Lancet 2011; 377: 1663-72.

Full Publication List via NIH PubMed