Trauma Mamas Celebrate Working Women

Three pregnant medical professionals wearing scrubs and smiling at the camera.

A surgeon, a resident and a fellow in Orthopaedic Trauma at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center are all welcoming babies this spring. Sharon Babcock, MD, Brooke Dickens, MD, and Kathryn Helmig, MD, recently expressed how it feels to be a “trauma mama,” and how the department has supported them throughout their pregnancies.

Sharon Babcock, MD, Assistant Professor, Orthopaedic Surgery

“This will be my third child since starting work here as an orthopaedic traumatologist. With each pregnancy there has only been support and excitement, with the unfailing support of my partners to cover my patients while I am able to enjoy time at home on maternity leave. This is something that few orthopaedic departments have, given that it is a male-dominated subspecialty with women comprising only 6 to 7% of the board-certified workforce. I am so happy that statistic is starting to change, with more and more women pursuing careers in orthopaedics. I believe it is because of cultures like those that exist at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist that raise women up and support all we do in and out of the hospital.”

Brooke Dickens, MD, Resident

“This is my first child. My husband and I are so excited to have our little boy, the first grandson in each of our families and the first grandchild on my side. It’s been lovely to be on this adventure at the same time as other women in the Orthopaedic Department. We’ve been to each other’s baby showers, and it’s been so fun to celebrate each other and our identities outside of work. I am so thankful to share this experience with them, especially as both are further in their careers than I am. It’s inspiring to see them flourishing as women in orthopaedics and as mama surgeons. It’s a small club, but it’s growing, and I feel so blessed to be part of it. I always knew this program would train me to be an excellent surgeon, and it’s so wonderful to have a program that supports my desire to become a mom at the same time!”

Kathryn Helmig, MD, Fellow

“I am currently in my one-year orthopaedic trauma fellowship at Wake Forest Baptist. This will be my first child, and I feel fortunate to have the support of the Orthopaedic Department throughout this process. I have been met with encouragement and understanding, including a baby shower thrown by surgeons and staff from the department. It has been great to share this experience with Sharon and Brooke and add to the growing group of mom surgeons in orthopaedics. Representation and visibility are important to growing diversity in fields, and I think we are all excited to be a part of the growing representation for women in orthopaedics.”