Starting a new family is one of the most important times in many people’s lives. There is plenty of excitement and anticipation during the pregnancy, but there is also some fear and worry because so much is at stake. As an OB-GYN at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital for Women, Dr. Brad Forsyth helps ensure that it all goes as smoothly as possible.
“Every day, you’re adding to people’s families,” Dr. Forsyth said of his work. “When you sit back and see the joy people have, it’s hard to beat that … You are at the threshold of life. It’s a real privilege.”
The work has its challenges. Recently, the 45-year-old Dr. Forsyth treated a patient who went into labor on a Tuesday at noon, but the baby was not delivered until 2 a.m. on Wednesday. The woman originally wanted a natural birth, but changed her mind and asked for an epidural. Then, there were concerns that a C-section would be required. It wasn’t necessary, and Dr. Forsyth delivered a healthy 9-pound baby.
Dr. Forsyth, who is married and has three children of his own (boys ages 16 and 12, a girl age 9), said part of the work is being patient and flexible with people’s wishes. Different mothers have different birth plans. It’s an OB-GYN’s job to listen and do their best to accommodate the patient’s wishes within reason.
“You get to be a part of someone’s story.”
While most of his patient interactions are happy ones, Dr. Forsyth understands the importance of being there for his patients when things end sadly, too. Recently, one of his patients became pregnant after trying for a long time. But when she came in for a 9-week checkup, the fetus had no heartbeat. Dr. Forsyth spoke to and listened to his patient and they prayed together.
Dr. Forsyth, who graduated medical school from LSU Health Science Center in New Orleans in 2004, remembered his first interest in medicine coming from an unlikely source: Sunday school. He noticed that his 4th grade Sunday school teacher would miss church every other Sunday. When Dr. Forsyth asked why, he learned that the man was a doctor and was on-call every other week. He knew that if the teacher was allowed to miss church, then his job had to be very important.
His curiosity continued through his youth. When he was in high school, he cheered for the LSU basketball team. The team’s star at the time was Shaquille O’Neal. The young Dr. Forsyth wondered what makes one person 7 feet and 4 inches, and another person 5 feet and 3 inches. The mysteries of genetics and biology fascinated him.
The decision to pursue a career in medicine is one that Dr. Forsyth is grateful for every day. OB-GYNs see patients on a regular basis, so he develops relationships that last for decades. He learns about his patients’ lives, families, jobs and more.
“You get to be a part of someone’s story,” Dr. Forsyth said.
Fun Facts About The Doc
When Dr. Forsyth was a child, he wanted to quarterback the New Orleans Saints and become the governor of Louisiana.
A man of devout faith, Dr. Forsyth teaches Sunday school classes to 10th graders.
Dr. Forsyth used to be a marathon runner until an ankle injury sidelined him.