Sydney Respiratory Specialists - Dr Samantha Herath
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Dr Samantha Herath

Sydney Respiratory & Sleep Physician

Dr Samantha Herath

About Dr Samantha Herath

MBBS (Hons), MPhil , FRACP

Dr Herath is a firm believer of personalised medicine and takes pride in caring for her patients in all aspects of their illness. She provides a boutique consultation service with up to 60 mins consultation time for new patients as she likes to get to know her patients and provide a quality service.

Dr Samantha Herath
1. Specialist Training

Dr Herath completed her specialist training in Respiratory Medicine in New Zealand in 2011. She is a certified sleep specialist, having completed her Sleep Medicine training at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and the Woolcock Institute in Sydney. She has completed a Master of Philosophy in sleep medicine at the University of Sydney on evaluating brain wave changes in obstructive sleep apnoea patients.

She had also undertaken extensive training in interventional bronchoscopy and Pleural diseases procedures in lung cancer management at the prestigious McGil University, Canada after winning a full scholarship for this training.

2. Research Involvement

Dr Herath is actively engaged in research and currently is conducting several multi centre international trials as the lead investigator, looking at introducing safer and more effective biopsy methods in diagnosing lung cancer, as a part of her PhD at the University of Sydney. Dr Herath completed her primary medical degree with honours at the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Prior to moving to Sydney, Dr Herath worked as a staff specialist at Middlemore Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand. She had established the first Radial EBUS and cryo-biopsy procedures for New Zealand during her appointment. Dr Herath has now moved permanently to Sydney as her family is based in Sydney.

3. Scholarships & Awards

Dr Herath had won many awards and scholarships. She was the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship from Health Workforce New Zealand that enabled her extensive advanced training in interventional bronchoscopy and pleural procedures in thoracic malignancy in Canada. She has also won the Boehringer Ingelheim travel award for the best presentation in COPD in 2013, enabling her to present her studies in an international forum.

Dr Herath firmly believes in keeping up to date with current practice and improving her technical procedural skills as well as safety and comfort in procedures for the patient. She participates in a European hands-on interventional procedural course on a yearly basis.

4. Life outside Medicine

Dr Herath is a keen basketball player having captained the university Women’s basketball team for three consecutive years during her undergraduate years in Sri Lanka. She is an ardent skier, a skill she developed whilst doing her Interventional Bronchoscopy training in Montreal. Dr Herath is a mother of three children Tishaan, Ranalee and Niven.

Special Interests

Dr Herath has a broad clinical interests in sleep medicine, general respiratory as well as management of lung cancer.

Lung cancer and related procedures including EBUS

Dr Herath had extensive training and expertise in the diagnosis and management of lung cancer. She is a member of the Crown Princess Mary Cancer Centre Lung multi-disciplinary team in Westmead. Lung cancer management through a multi-disciplinary team involvement leads to better care for the patients.

Dr Herath personally performs all the required procedures for her lung cancer patients from diagnosis through to symptom relief and believes in ongoing comprehensive care and support for her patients throughout difficult times. She has extensive experience in Radial EBUS, Linear EBUS, Rigid bronchoscopy, Argon plasma coagulation, metallic stenting and cryobiopsy. She performs pleural procedures including thoracoscopy for the diagnosis of tumours as well as tuberculosis, Indwelling pleural catheter insertion and thoracoscopic pleurodesis. Dr Herath has strong expertise in diagnosing abnormal nodules and masses in the lungs and she uses Radial EBUS and cryobiopsy which are safer, new techniques that are utilised for this purpose.

Sleep Medicine

Dr Herath has expertise in Obstructive Sleep Apnoea management with CPAP devices as well as Oral splints. She personally reports sleep studies of her patients. She also has expertise and special interest in narcolepsy, sleep and neurological disorders and behavioural problems during sleep (parasomnias).

General Respiratory Medicine

Dr Herath has expertise in airways disease including all general respiratory diseases. Dr Herath is the ongoing lead author with the Cochrane Collaboration on the paper dedicated to antibiotic use in chronic obstructive airways disease. She had published broadly in highly competitive medical journals like the JAMA and Lancet Respiratory Medicine in management of chronic obstructive airways disease and bronchiectasis. She has multiple peer reviewed papers and presentations with large number of views.

Dr Herath continues to do both clinical bed side teaching and lectures for medical students at the University of Sydney.

She is a part of the interventional group at Westmead Hospital and takes part in regular workshops in educating specialists-in training, in procedures and establishment of patient safety.


View Dr Herath's profile on ResearchGate

  1. Herath SC, Poole P. Prophylactic antibiotic therapy for COPD. JAMA. 2014; 311: 2225-2226

  2. Wong C, Herath S. Azithromycin for patients with frequent COPD exacerbations. Lancet Respir Med 2014. (14) 70087-6.

  3. Herath S, Lewis C. Extra pulmonary Tuberculosis: Thinking beyond a normal CXR. Journal of primary health care 2013; 6 (1): 64-68.

  4. Herath SC, Poole P. Prophylactic antibiotic therapy for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2013, Issue 11. Art. No.: CD009764. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD009764.pub2.

  5. Herath S, Lewis C, Nsibet M. Increasing awareness of Rhodococcus equi pulmonary infection in the immunocompetent adult: A rare infection with poor prognosis. NZMJ 2013; 126 (1387): 165-174.

  6. Herath S, Poole P. Prophylactic antibiotic treatment in COPD; preliminary data from a Cochrane systematic review. Respirology 2013; 18 (supplement 2): 19

  7. Herath S, Poole P. Prophylactic antibiotic therapy for chronic bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Cochrane database of systematic reviews Issue 4, 2012.

  8. Rosemergy I, Frith R, Herath S, Walker E. Use of postictal respiratory pattern to discriminate between convulsive psychogenic nonepileptic seizures and generalized tonic-clonic seizures. Epilepsy and behavior 2013; 27:81-84.

  9. Jayasinghe SA, Atukorala I, Gunethilleke B, Siriwardena V, Herath SC, De Abrew K. Is walking barefoot a risk factor for diabetic foot disease in developing countries? Rural and Remote Health 7 (online), 2007: 692. [Full text also available here]


  1. Addition of a cryobiopsy improves the diagnostic yield of radial EBUS sampling.
    Preliminary results from the CT CROP and Cryo feasibility studies.
    Herath S, Yap E, Low I .TSANZ 2016 (oral)

  2. CPAP compliance among the socio economically deprived South Auckland (NZ) population.
    Jaya Jose, Samantha HerathTSANZ 2016 (oral)

  3. Needle aspiration using a 21G needle (eXcelon or WANG), via Radial EBUS guide sheath, gives better samples in comparison to cytology brush or forceps biopsies.
    A descriptive case series.(poster) Herath S, Low I. TSANZ 2016

  4. Maintenance Cost of a Linear Endobronchial Ultrasound TBNA (EBUS TBNA) Service.
    Elaine Yap, Samantha Herath (poster). TSANZ 2015, Perth

  5. Achieving auto pleurodesis in loculated malignant pleural effusion by administration of tissue plasminogen activator and deoxy ribo nuclease via indwelling pleural catheter followed by aggressive drainage.
    Case report and literature review. (Poster) Jae Beom Hong, Samantha Herath. TSANZ 2016 Perth

  6. Prophylactic antibiotics in COPD.
    A Cochrane systematic review. 2013. Herath S, Poole. (Oral)TSANZ 2013 Darwin, Australia 2013. (This presentation was awarded the Boreingher Ingelheim Travel Grant for COPD)

  7. Pulmonary involvement in patients presenting with extra pulmonary tuberculosis: Thinking beyond a normal CXR.
    (Oral) Herath S, Lewis C. RACP young investigators presentation Auckland, New Zealand 2011.

  8. Assessing lung cancer patients for surgical resection; all may not need cardio-pulmonary exercise testing (CPET)?
    (Poster) Herath S, Horwood F. World Lung Cancer Conference Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2011

  9. Rhodococcus equi pulmonary infection in an immune-competent host: a case report and literature review.
    (Poster) Herath S, Lewis C, Nisbet M Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand Scientific Sessions Perth, Australia 2011.

  10. Evaluation of patients admitted under General Medicine; Has Clinical Judgment Being Taken Over by serial troponins?
    (Oral) Herath S, Spriggs D. Internal Medicine Society Australia New Zealand Queensland Branch Meeting 2010-October

  11. Use of Disease Modifying Anti Rheumatoid Drug Usage in Rheumatoid arthritis in Sri Lanka (
    Oral) Herath S, Udugama DG, Fernandopulle.R. Lanka Medical Association annual academic sessions Colombo, Sri Lanka 2005.

  12. Knowledge, Attitudes and skills of breastfeeding in mothers with new born babies, in the Sri Lankan Tertiary Care setting. (Oral)
    Herath S, Udugama DG, Perera J. Sri Lanka Medical Association annual academic sessions Colombo Sri Lanka 2004.


  1. ASSER Trust grant funding for the multicentre RCT titled "Randomized controlled trial (RCT) comparing the diagnostic yield of Cryo-biopsy via Radial Endo-Bronchial Ultra-Sound (R-EBUS) guide sheath (GS) Vs. CT guided transthoracic biopsy in patients with parenchymal pulmonary lesions. (CT-CROP)”. This is an equipment grant of 39,450 NZD

  2. Koawetea Research fund seed grant for Feasibility study done to assess the use of cryobiopsy via radial EBUS in Middlemore Hospital. Funding 6000 NZD.

  3. Boehringer Ingelheim Travel grant for research in COPD – 2013 TSANZ (Darwin)
    This AUD 4500 prize was awarded to the best abstract submitted to TSANZ on COPD. The grant enables the candidate to present the same abstract at the CHEST conference 2013 (Chicago), by covering the cost of airfare, accommodation and registration fee for the conference.

  4. CIRUS (Centre for integrating research and understanding of sleep) clinical research fellowship-2012 (Sydney)
    This is an AUD 30,000 grant given to pursue a one year program of strongly mentored protected clinical research time is combined with limited clinical work and working towards a higher degree in sleep or respiratory research.

  5. Senior Registrar Award from Green lane Research Fund -2011 (Auckland)
    This is a NZD 3000 grant given to one senior registrar from the disciplines of cardiothoracic, cardiology and respiratory each year for their outstanding enthusiasm for research; enabling them to attend an international conference of their choice

  6. Advance Trainee Scheme Fellowship – from New Zealand Health Workforce - 2011 (Auckland)
    This is a NZD 118,000 scholarship awarded in order to carry out further training overseas to up skill the trainee and bring back the expertise to New Zealand. This was offered for completing a fellowship in thoracic malignancy and interventional bronchoscopy at the McGill’s University, Canada.

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