UPMC Children’s Pediatric Urology Fellow Omar Ayyash, MD, MPH, to Join Division as Faculty Member

December 7, 2022

UPMC Children's Division of Pediatric Urology fellow Omar Ayyash, MD, MPH, will join the Division as an assistant professor of Urology upon completing his fellowship training in June 2023.

All of Dr. Ayyash's training has occurred at the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC. As an undergraduate student, Dr. Ayyash studied molecular biology, neuroscience, and economics. He graduated Summa Cum Laude and was the valedictorian of his graduating class. His undergraduate research studying protein turnover was recognized with a Howard Hughes Medical Institute research fellowship award.

He then earned his medical degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, followed by a urology residency and a fellowship in pediatric urologic surgery.

Dr. Ayyash’s Master of Public Health was focused in biostatistics and epidemiology with his thesis investigating pediatric kidney stone outcomes.

"I've had exceptional training opportunities and challenges at the University of Pittsburgh, UPMC, and UPMC Children's," says Dr. Ayyash. "This area has some of the top academic medical training programs anywhere. I'd stack my education and experience here against any other program in the country."

Dr. Ayyash also says the bonus was that he's been able to stay close to his family, who have lived in Pittsburgh for many years. Dr. Ayyash's family is originally from Kuwait but was forced to leave the country in the early 1990s due to the Gulf War.

“My father is a physician and had a well-regarded practice in Kuwait for many years. But to continue practicing medicine in the United States, he had to go through training again. Watching him work and study as I was growing up was incredibly motivational for me in also wanting to become a doctor,” says Dr. Ayyash.

Clinically, Dr. Ayyash has specific interests in robotic surgery and urologic cancers. He also is in the process of becoming the first pediatric urologist at UPMC Children's to be a member of the Children's Oncology Group. Dr. Ayyash has trained extensively with Tatum Tarin, MD and enthusiastically collaborates with the pediatric surgery division including Marcus Mallek, MD, FAAP, who both have an emphasis in urologic cancers. He has also worked closely with Division Chief Glenn Cannon, MD, and Fellowship Program Director Francis Schneck, MD, in robotic-assisted surgeries for complex reconstructions and disorders of sex differentiation. Additionally, Dr. Ayyash has trained with Paul Rusilko, DO, FACS, who has extensive experience in hypospadias repair and urologic trauma.

“I’ve had an exceptionally diverse and deep level of surgical training during residency and fellowship," says Dr. Ayyash. "With many of the conditions we treat, and the young age of our patients, they could live very long lives with their condition, so it's incumbent upon us to be as prepared and well-trained as possible to ensure good, long-term outcomes. The tolerance for complications or errors, particularly in pediatric patients, is basically zero. In this field, you must be on top of your game from day one. With my training here in Pittsburgh, that will be possible."

Since his time as an undergraduate, Dr. Ayyash has had a passion for scientific and medical research, which has carried forward into his advanced training and what will likely be a very productive career as a surgeon and investigator.

During his training, Dr. Ayyash has contributed to numerous surgical studies, and health services research topics under the mentorship of Bruce Jacobs, MD, MPH, and Benjamin Davies, MD, two faculty members from the Department of Urology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

"I've had the opportunity to collaborate on projects ranging from an opioids prescription reduction project that has shown significant and durable reductions in the number of opioids being prescribed by our surgical teams," says Dr. Ayyash. "I'm also excited to currently be working on studies related to wedge biopsies in fertility preservation patients, and I will be getting involved in financial studies related to robotic-assisted procedures."

As Dr. Ayyash explains, there is a tremendous amount of opportunity at UPMC Children’s and the University of Pittsburgh to make a lasting impact in the lives of its young patients.

“I’m looking forward to continuing my work as a faculty member next year, helping our patients and families with their clinical needs, supporting them on their medical and surgical journeys, and finding ways through evidence-based research to continue improving the care we give.”

Further Reading

Below is a selection of research co-authored by Dr. Ayyash during his training.

  • Theisen KM, Ayyash O, Pere M, Ferroni M, Riley J, Averch TD, Semins MJ. Defining 24-hour urine parameters and kidney stone risk of student athletes. Clin Nephrol. 2022 Feb; 97(2): 86-92. doi: 10.5414/CN110355.


  • Villanueva J, Pifer B, Colaco M, Grajales V, Ayyash O, Chaudhry R, Schneck F, Cannon G, Fox J. A government mandated consent safely reduces opioid utilization for major pediatric genitourinary surgeries. J Pediatr Surg. 2021 Nov; 56(11): 2086-2093. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2021.01.004. Epub 2021 Jan 9.


  • Jacobs BL, Rogers D, Yabes JG, Bandari J, Ayyash OM, Maganty A, Armann KM, Worku HA, Pace NM, Shah A, Pekala KR, Yu M, Chelly JE, Macleod LC, Davies BJ. Large reduction in opioid prescribing by a multipronged behavioral intervention after major urologic surgery. Cancer. 2021 Jan 15;127(2):257-265. doi: 10.1002/cncr.33200. Epub 2020 Oct 1.


  • Shah AA, Kumar P, Ogunmola AG, Ayyash O, Yabes JG, Sabik LM, Odisho AY, Bandari J, Macleod LC, Davies BJ, Jacobs BL. Statewide Price Variation for Generic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Medications. Urology. 2021 Feb; 148: 224-229. doi: 10.1016/j.urology.2020.08.054. Epub 2020 Sep 19.


  • Villanueva J, Grajales V, Colaco M, Ayyash O, Chaudhry R, Schneck F, Cannon G, Fox J. Government Mandated Consent Dramatically Reduces Pediatric Urologist Opioid Utilization for Outpatient and Minor Emergency Surgeries. J Urol. 2021 Jan; 205(1): 264-270.


  • Bandari J, Pace NM, Lee AJ, Ayyash OM, Yecies TS, Jacobs BL, Davies BJ. Strong Conflict of Interest Policies are not Associated With Decreased Industry Payments to Academic Urology Departments. Urology. 2020 Jun; 140: 51-55. doi:10.1016/j.urology.2020.02.022. Epub 2020 Mar 9.


  • Myrga JM, Ayyash OM, Bandari J, Fam MM, Macleod LC, Jacobs BL, Davies BJ. The Safety and Short-term Outcomes of Leukocyte Depleted Autologous Transfusions During Radical Cystectomy. Urology. 2020 Jan; 135: 106-110. doi:10.1016/j.urology.2019.08.056. Epub 2019 Oct 16.


  • Theisen KM, Park SY, Jeong K, Macleod LC, Bandari J, Ayyash O, Odisho AY, Jacobs BL, Davies BJ. Extreme Price Variation for Generic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Medications. Urology. 2019 Feb; 124: 223-228. doi: 10.1016/j.urology.2018.10.020. Epub 2018 Oct 23.


  • Bandari J, Ayyash OM, Emery SL, Wessel CB, Davies BJ. Marketing and Testosterone Treatment in the USA: A Systematic Review. Eur Urol Focus. 2017 Oct; 3(4-5): 395-402.


  • Bandari J, Ayyash OM, Turner RM 2nd, Jacobs BL, Davies BJ. The lack of a relationship between physician payments from drug manufacturers and Medicare claims for abiraterone and enzalutamide. Cancer. 2017 Nov 15; 123(22): 4356-4362. doi: 10.1002/cncr.30914. Epub 2017 Jul 27.