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About the
Department of Surgery


The Department of Surgery is comprised of 13 divisions overseen by the Chair and the Central Business Office. The Department's central nervous system is the Executive Committee, which makes all major decisions regarding recruitment, program development, promotions, resource allocation, and budget planning. The 13 Divisions of the Department embrace a culture of innovation and collaboration, which has resulted in such breakthroughs as:

  • The first transoral appendectomy performed in the United States
  • The first transvaginal sleeve gastrectomy
  • Pioneered NOTES procedures
  • Ex vivo liver resection and reimplantation
  • Cytoreduction and HIPEC
  • Awake brain surgery
  • Established the Center for the Future of Surgery as a Level I ACS Accredited Education Institute

Department History

UC San Diego's Department of Surgery is one of 19 departments within the School of Medicine. With a tripartite mission of excellence in patient care, teaching, and research, the Department maintains:

  • a thriving clinical enterprise
  • faculty providing exceptional patient care
  • educating future generations of surgeons and conducting practice-changing research

The Department's faculty, fellows, residents, and staff are led by Dr. Bryan Clary, the 4th chair since the Department was established in 1968.

Since its inception, the Department of Surgery has played a major role in student teaching throughout all 4 years of the medical school curriculum. It has internship and residency programs in seven specialties and is actively involved with continuing education for surgeons and physicians, both locally and nationally. In addition, the Department has developed productive research programs in a wide variety of fields.

Clinical Services

UC San Diego Department of Surgery prides itself on meeting health care challenges and pursuing medical breakthroughs while providing the highest quality patient care possible. We invite you to visit the UC San Diego Health website for detailed information on the surgical services we offer patients.

The Department's 13 divisions embrace a culture of innovation and collaboration, which has resulted in important advances and unique clinical programs such as:

Pulmonary thromboendarterectomy for chronic pulmonary embolism
  • > 3,000 pulmonary procedures performed to date
  • International leader in the field
Natural Orifice Translumenal Endoluminal Surgery (NOTES)
  • First transoral appendectomy in the United States
  • First transvaginal sleeve gastrectromy
Bench to bedside development of innovative treatments for:
  • Otitis media
  • Sentinel lymph node mapping for melanoma and breast cancer
  • Fluorescent-guided surgery
Complex liver surgery for primary and secondary malignancies Cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraoperative chemotherapy (HIPEC)
  • Highest volume program in the Western United States
Center for the Future of Surgery
  • Unique educational and research facility
  • Level I ACS Accredited Education Institute