University of Nebraska Medical Center

Current Residents


Dr. Mohamed Elfil

Mohamed Elfil, MD

Medical school: Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, Egypt. Fun fact about me: My last name “Elfil” means “the elephant” in Arabic. I guess this makes me always “the elephant in the room.”

Dr. Leith Hobbs

Leith Hobbs, DO

Medical school: NYIT at Arkansas State. Fun fact about me: I won a Jell-O eating competition in the 1st grade.

Dr. Mohammad Sultan Aladawi

Mohammad Sultan Aladawi, MD

Medical school: University of Jordan. What I do when not working: I usually go to the gym after work. On weekends I go hiking and sometimes fishing. I enjoy playing video games including league of legends and call of duty. I also do digital art as a hobby. I used to draw anime characters but currently I'm using digital art to make medical illustrations for scientific research.

Dr. Isha Snehal

Isha Snehal, MD

Medical school: Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi, India. Fun fact about me: I published two books of poetry and got featured in the Neurology Today for slam poetry.

Dr. Dmitry Balian

Dmitry Balian, MD

Medical school: Vitebsk State Medical University Fun fact about me: I ran a full marathon in Reykjavik, Iceland.


Dr. Kanchan Kumari

Kanchan Kumari, MD

Medical school: Chandka Medical College, Larkana, Pakistan. Fun fact: I am a traveler and love to explore new places and cultures. I have lived in three different countries and can speak four languages.

Dr. Nithin Kurra

Nithin Kurra, MD

Medical School: Siddhartha Medical College, Vijayawada, India. What I do when not working: I watch anime, play badminton and spend quality time with friends and family. I enjoy long drives!

Dr. Yashwanth Reddy Pulluru

Yashwanth Reddy Pulluru, MD

Medical school: Kamineni Institute of Medical Sciences, Telangana State, India. Fun Fact: I was part of the university cricket and basketball teams in medical school.

Dr. Courtney Venegas

Courtney Venegas, MD

Medical school: UNMC. What I do when not working: I like to sing, and I am a part of the worship team at my church. I also like to play sports and try to be involved in either intramural volleyball or sometimes soccer if my husband convinces me. And of course, I like to escape reality from time to time and read books.

Dr. Mehar Zahid

Mehar Zahid, MD

Medical school: University College of Medicine & Dentistry, Lahore, Pakistan. Fun fact about me: I won many gold medals for the fastest time in 100-meter dash back in the day.


Dr. Joseph Benes

Joseph Benes, MD

Medical school: UNMC. Fun fact about me: Although I have lived in Nebraska my whole life, I have visited 16 different countries!

Dr. Sheida Koohsari

Sheida Koohsari, MD

Medical school: Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Iran. Fun fact about me: I dance Argentine tango.

Dr. Hannah Maldonado

Hannah Maldonado, MD

Medical school: UNMC. What I do when not working: Run, lake days, anything outdoors with family and friends.

Dr. Zaid Rkh Najdawi

Zaid Rkh Najdawi, MD

Medical school: University of Jordan School of Medicine, Amman, Jordan. Fun fact about me: I started my residency at the age of 23.

Dr. Valeria Parra Payano

Valeria Parra Payano, MD

Medical school: Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Peru. Fun fact about me: I write poetry and participated in a few competitions in Peru. My favorite food is any Peruvian or Korean dish!

Dr. Gabriella Rizzo

Gabriella Rizzo, MD

Medical school: UNMC. What I do when not working: I spend my free time gardening, biking or finding a new seasonal recipe to cook or bake.


Arenn Carlos, MD

Arenn Carlos, MD

Medical school: Università degli Studi di Pavia in Italy. Fun fact about me: I have visited more than 65 countries. I love to explore natural wonders and man-made attractions, learn about different cultures, and try new food. I also have two white rabbits at home whom I adore.

Mitchell Floura, MD

Mitchell Floura, MD

Medical School: University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Fun fact about me: I'm a grown-up who spends his free time playing video and board games!

Mark Jedras

Mark Jedras, DO

Medical School: Kansas City University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Fun facts about me: I grew up in Wausau, WI. I have three citizenships, enjoy homebrewing, video games and cross country skiing.

Mathias Maisenbacher, MD

Mathias Maisenbacher, MD

Medical School: Sapienza University of Rome. Fun fact about me: I had a shining acting debut as Rumpelstiltskin in a play in elementary school.

Sharon Peng, MBBS

Sharon Peng, MBBS

Medical school: Nanjing Medical University. Fun fact about me: I can swim freestyle for 2000 meters and butterfly for 600 meters (though not on the same day!).

Haley Riley, DO

Haley Riley, DO

Medical School: Oklahoma State University. Fun fact about me: I have a cat named Purkinje

Hannah Safranek, MD

Hannah Safranek, MD

Medical school: UNMC. Fun fact about me: I have played the pipe organ for over almost 20 years. In my free time I like to embroider and to spend time with my husband and daughter.

Neurology Residents and their pets

Dr. Peng's pet cat, Raven


Dr. Benes' pet chickens, Alfreda and Gnocchi


Dr. Carlos' pet bunnies, Muffin and Snowy


Dr. Riley's pet cat