Every month, we feature a physician as an opportunity for the community to learn more about the great doctors on staff at Little Company of Mary Hospital. This month, we had the chance to talk with Dr. Ryan Kukor, an Internal Medicine Physician at Little Company of Mary Hospital (2850 W. 95th Street, Suite 102, Evergreen Park, IL). Read on to get to know Dr. Kukor, including his long-term fascination with science, his passion for his work and even his musical skills.
Dr. Ryan Kukor
Medical School: Ross University School of Medicine
Residency: Mercy Hospital and Medical Center
Internship: Mercy Hospital and Medical Center
Specialty: Internal Medicine
Why did you decide to become a physician?
Since I was a child, I was interested in what science could do for us. I remember visiting the anatomy displays at the Museum of Science and Industry when my grandfather was off from his dentistry practice, and I was in awe of how knowledge can be used to relieve pain. I was interested in longer-term research projects, but through school I discovered that I found the unique rewards of focusing on one patient at a time and the chance for a life of service in medicine more appealing.
How did you choose your specialty?
Internal Medicine combines the primary care approach—to treat the patient instead of the disease—with deep training in complex medical conditions. I always liked working with more experienced people and, currently, a growing number of active seniors need personalized care to stay healthy. Essentially, it is the best combination of puzzles and stories.
What do you enjoy most about being a physician?
I enjoy meeting people and hearing about their lives. I’ve had the chance to meet a surprising number of people over 100 years old and work with their families to keep them active. Finding ways to help people do what they were doing before illness got in the way is the best.
What is your philosophy of care?
Only one person—the patient—can determine their own goals and what steps they take toward them. The patient has to steer the ship. My role is to assess the situation and provide information and options. The best doctor-patient relationships form when I know who my patients are and what they want for themselves in the long run, and I am glad that Little Company of Mary shares that philosophy.
What is the number one advice/tip you give your patients for healthy living?
Keep active and keep doing what you love.
What is the best thing Little Company of Mary has to offer patients?
Little Company of Mary Hospital has a history of community, a focus on people instead of their diseases and a mission to help people live their best lives.
If you hadn’t become a physician, what would you be doing?
I would most likely be studying bacteria, or maybe teaching science.
What are your hobbies and interests outside of the office?
Lately, I spend as much time as I can with my baby daughter. My wife and I take her for walks around the neighborhood with our dog, and we play her songs on the ukulele or from our record collection. I also enjoy running and yoga.
We recently interviewed Dr. Kukor about the importance of an annual exam. Read more.
Dr. Kukor is currently accepting new patients. To make an appointment please call 708-226-1206.