UPMC Physician Resources

Our Program

The UPMC Esophageal and Lung Surgery Institute's Division of Thoracic and Foregut Surgery includes expert surgeons who are world-renowned for their contributions to the advancement of minimally invasive surgical approaches to diseases of the lung and pleura, such as lung cancer and mesothelioma, and diseases of the esophagus and mediastinal conditions, such as thymic tumors and myasthenia gravis. They have not only pioneered new surgical techniques, but have contributed to research that has helped advance the field of lung and thoracic surgery. In addition, the division’s faculty are engaged in the education and training of surgeons from across the nation and around the world through yearly conferences and a comprehensive and competitive fellowship program.

Leading-Edge Surgical Treatment
UPMC lung and thoracic surgeons treat some of the most difficult cancers using up-to-the-minute surgical procedures and techniques, including:

Cancers of the lung, airway, pleura, and esophagus

  • Video-assisted surgery (VATS)
    • Lobectomy
    • Anatomic sublobar resection (segmentectomy)

Intraoperative radiotherapy (brachytherapy)

Bronchoscopic and esophagoscopic therapies

  • Photodynamic therapy
  • Stenting and laser therapy for obstructing tumors

Mesothelioma and malignant pleural effusions

  • Minimally invasive diagnosis and treatment of malignant pleural effusions
  • Extrapleural pneumonectomy
  • Pleurectomy and hyperthermic chemoperfusion
  • Image-guided thoracic tumor ablation
    • Radiofrequency ablation
    • Stereotactic radiosurgery (SBRT)


  • Minimally invasive esophagectomy

Groundbreaking Clinical Research
With its partner, the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI), western Pennsylvania’s only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, the UPMC Division of Thoracic and Foregut Surgery leads pioneering clinical and laboratory-based studies that translate quickly into patient care, including these breakthroughs:

UPCI holds the highly competitive Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) grant for lung cancer research from the National Cancer Institute. Through this grant, investigators are studying:

  • Factors related to women’s increased susceptibility to lung cancer
  • Cancer vaccines and immunotherapy
  • Pharmacogenomic  biomarkers to improve early detection and prognosis
  • Genetic mutations to identify individuals at high risk for developing lung cancer
  • Minimally invasive approaches to lung and esophageal cancer

Through the Georgia Cooper Lung Research Registry, a lung cancer database and blood repository, physician-researchers are working to develop a reliable screening test for lung cancer.


  • Management of Benign Esophageal Disorders
  • Minimally Invasive Lung Cancer Course
  • Malignant Esophageal Disorders

Fellowship and Training Programs
The Division of Thoracic and Foregut Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine offers several training programs in one of the most active thoracic and foregut surgical divisions in the United States. Training programs include:

  • Cardiothoracic Surgery Residency Program
  • Fellowship Program
  • Mini-Fellowships 

Learn more about fellowship and training programs within the Division of Thoracic and Foregut Surgery.