The University of Arizona
Department of Surgery

Warren C. Breidenbach III, MD, MSc

Chief, Division of Reconstructive and Plastic Surgery
Professor of Surgery

Contact Information

Reconstructive and Plastic Surgery: PO Box 245062; Tucson, AZ 85724-5062
Arizona Health Science Center: 1501 N. Campbell Ave.
Office Room Number
Office Phone
(520) 626-8880
Office Fax
(520) 626-3330

Practice Locations

Patient Appointments
(520) 874-2637
The Specialty Clinic at Alvernon, 707 N. Alvernon Way, Tucson, AZ 85711 Suite 201
Clinic Fax
(520) 694-1716
The University of Arizona Medical Center – University Campus -1501 N Campbell Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85724
The University of Arizona Medical Center - South Campus -2800 E. Ajo Way, Tucson, AZ 85713
VA Hospital-Southern Arizona- 3601 S. Sixth Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85723


Team Bio Info 

Warren C. Breidenbach, III, MD, has joined the UA Department of Surgery as professor and chief of the Division of Reconstructive and Plastic Surgery.  He is the world leader of hand and composite tissue allotransplantation (CTA).  He comes to the UA from the University of Louisville, where he led the team of surgeons to perform the nation's first (and world’s first successful) hand transplant in January 1999. He has since performed more hand transplants than any other surgeon in the world.  Additionally, based on his leadership and expertise in the field, he trained the majority of the U.S. teams performing hand transplants. 

In addition to his leadership role as division chief, Dr. Breidenbach’s goal at the University of Arizona is to establish an Institute for Composite Tissue Allotransplantation and Regenerative Surgery, including hands, face, legs and feet—the first of its kind in the nation. 

Dr. Breidenbach’s clinical interests are extremity surgery, peripheral nerve compression problems, repetitive stress disorders, and reconstructive trauma surgery.

Dr. Breidenbach is extensively involved in cutting edge immunosuppressant research which has tremendous potential for those in need of transplants.  In addition to CTA, his research interests also include peripheral nerve outcomes, management of extremity pain syndrome, and animal models of tolerance induction in CTA. 

A graduate from the University of Calgary, Canada, Dr. Breidenbach received his postgraduate training at McGill University, Montreal, in plastic surgery. He completed a one-year microsurgery fellowship with the Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, followed by one year as a Christine M. Kleinert Hand Fellow at the University of Louisville.

Dr. Breidenbach was appointed the first Hand Scholar with the Christine M. Kleinert Institute for Hand and Microsurgery for two years. His work on vascularized nerve grafts received the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Clinical Research Scholarship Award. Dr. Breidenbach also received the Senior Award of the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery for his work in blood flow to nerves.

Dr. Breidenbach has served as president of the International Hand and Composite Tissue Allotransplantation Society and is Founding President of the American Society of Reconstructive Transplant. He also served on several committees of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand and as Secretary of the American Society for Peripheral Nerve.

Dr. Breidenbach has received numerous awards and honors and has published more than 80 papers and publications.


Clinical Specialties
  • Extremity surgery, hand, elbow, shoulder, neck
  • Peripheral nerve compression problems
  • Repetitive stress disorders, extremities
  • Reconstructive trauma surgery
Board Certification
Certificate of Added Qualifications in Hand Surgery, 1989
Board Certification
Plastic Surgery, America, 1988


MD: 1975, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta
MSc: 1972, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta
1976, Straight Surgical Internship, Royal Victoria Hospital, Montreal, Quebec
1981, Plastic Surgery Residency, McGill University Hospitals, Montreal, Quebec
1979, General Surgery Resident, Montreal General Hospital, Montreal, Quebec
1984, Hand Surgery, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky
1982, Microsurgery Fellowship, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Virginia
Additional Training 
1986, Hand Scholar, Louisville Institute for Hand and Microsurgery 1990, Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery (Hand Surgery), University of Louisville


  • Peripheral nerve outcome
  • Management of extremity pain syndrome
  • Composite tissue allotransplantation
  • Small and large animal models of tolerance induction in composite tissue allotransplantation

Patient Information