Chair of Department of Surgery: Dr. Kaiser

Dr. Larry R. Kaiser, the Eldridge L. Eliason Professor of Surgery, has been named chair of the Department of Surgery and Chief of Surgery at HUP. As chair, he also assumed the John Rhea Barton Professorship of Surgery. Dr. Kaiser's appointment was effective July 1.

The director of the Section of General Thoracic Surgery, Dr. Kaiser also serves as director of the Thoracic Oncology Program. He is director of the Center for Lung Cancer and Related Disorders as well as co-director of the Thoracic Oncology Research Laboratory.

Dr. Kaiser is widely known for his innovative approach to combating malignant mesothelioma through gene therapy, a collaboration with Dr. Steven M. Albelda, of the Department of Medicine. As principal investigator of Penn's grant from the National Emphysema Treatment Trial, Dr. Kaiser is evaluating the success of lung-reduction surgery for patients suffering from end-stage emphysema. In addition, he pioneered the technique of video thoracoscopy and designed and patented instruments for use in the procedure.

After earning his M.D. from Tulane in 1977, Dr. Kaiser took his internship and residency in surgery at UCLA. In 1993-84, he was chief resident in surgery there. He completed his training at the University of Toronto, where he was senior resident in cardiovascular surgery and then chief resident in thoracic surgery. His first faculty appointment was at Cornell University Medical College. In 1988, he joined the medical faculty of Washington University School of Medicine, rising to associate professor (with tenure) in 1990. Dr. Kaiser came to Penn in 1991 as associate professor of surgery and director of the Lung Transplantation Program.

Dr. Kaiser serves on the editorial boards of a number of professional journals, including the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Annals of Surgical Oncology, Contemporary Surgery, and Annals of Surgery. Author of more than 240 original papers, he is the author of Atlas of General Thoracic Surgery (1996). Dr. Kaiser is an editor of several other books, including Thoracoscopic Surgery (1993), Mastery of Cardiothoracic Surgery (1998), and The Surgical Review: An Integrated Basic and Clinical Science Study Guide (2000).

Inducted into Alpha Omega Alpha at Tulane, Dr. Kaiser received the Merck Manual Award and the Tulane Medical Alumni Association Award in 1977. He has been named a "Top Doc" by Philadelphia magazine twice and a "World Class Doc" by the magazine in 1997. He was recognized as a "Top Doctor" by American Health Magazine and as a "Top Women's Cancer Specialist" in the field of lung cancer by Good Housekeeping. In 1998, Dr. Kaiser was listed in "Best Doctors in America." He has also been honored for his teaching, receiving the Department Faculty Teaching Award in 1998.

He succeeds Dr. Clyde Barker as department chair.


Almanac, Vol. 48, No. 1, July 17, 2001

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