Message from the Chair


Welcome to the University of Arizona College of Medicine Department of Surgery website. We are committed to being the place people want to be – where patients want to get their care, faculty want to work, residents want to train and medical students want to learn. Our principles of people first, leadership at all levels, relentless transparency and generative solutions guide every aspect of our care and governance. It is my pleasure to introduce you to the many and diverse clinical services, educational opportunities and research programs at the University of Arizona.

The Department of Surgery at the University of Arizona College of Medicine Tucson is the oldest academic surgery department serving the state of Arizona. Along with the U of A COM-T we partner with Banner University Medical Division to provide the highest quality, leading-edge surgical care to our patients. We also are committed to educating the next generation of physicians and surgeons. In addition to patient care and education, we are tireless in our quest of innovations that will help us care for our patients.

The Department of Surgery includes several specialties including general surgery, surgical oncology, transplantation, bariatric surgery, trauma, critical care, burns, cardiothoracic surgery, neurosurgery, urology, podiatric and vascular surgery. We have surgeons with advanced training in robotic surgery (cardiac, thoracic, urologic, general and bariatric) end organ failure (heart, lung, liver, kidney, pancreas transplantation) pelvic floor disorders; integrated vascular surgery and diabetic wound care; trauma and burns and advanced surgical treatment of pancreatic, liver, upper gastrointestinal cancers; breast cancer; colorectal disease; urologic cancers. Working as a team with referring physicians and striving to maintain the highest surgical standards, the UA Department of Surgery serves as a resource for the community, the state of Arizona and the southwestern United States.

In addition to advancing clinical care, a primary focus of our Department is the education of future physicians and surgeons. Through the use of simulation and cutting-edge technology, we are transforming the way we train our medical students, residents and fellows. Our residency and fellowship programs are truly outstanding and present a broad range of educational opportunities. Our graduating residents are competitive for the most highly regarded fellowships or, if they choose, are ready for practice. We have residencies in general surgery, vascular surgery, neurosurgery, urology and cardiothoracic surgery. Our current fellowship offerings include trauma/critical care (with an additional year in acute care surgery), international trauma research, minimally invasive and bariatric surgery, and vascular surgery. Combining our educational goals with our dedication to research, the Department of Surgery initiated a Medical Sciences Graduate Program, which was so successful it was transitioned to be an institutional wide program. Still available to our residents, this program offers surgery residents the opportunity to earn either a master’s degree or a Ph.D. during residency training, thus furthering a legacy of educating and training future academic surgical leaders.

As Arizona’s premier academic institution, our surgeons are not only clinicians and educators, but also physician-scientists who are pioneering and advancing medical treatments. We are home to basic science and clinical research laboratories with programs in stem cells and regenerative medicine, diabetic wound care, human motion and fall prevention, breast cancer, traumatic injuries, donor organ preservation, prostate cancer and quality-of-life issues and survivorship. Our researchers collaborate with biomedical engineers, optical scientists and physicians from many other medical specialties to identify new solutions to current and future healthcare challenges. In so doing, our research programs ensure that the latest advances in medical knowledge can be rapidly and effectively applied to benefit the patients under our surgical care.

I am excited about the future of surgery at the University of Arizona and invigorated by the opportunities and challenges ahead. The faculty, residents and staff of our Department are ready to meet those challenges. We are unwavering in our goal to be a robust, vibrant, innovative department that will lead surgical care in Arizona and beyond.

Leigh A. Neumayer, MD, MS, FACS
Chair, Department of Surgery
Professor of Surgery
Margaret E. and Fenton L. Maynard Endowed Chair in Breast Cancer Research