Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Institute
Elm & Carlton Street
Buffalo, NY 14263
Wesley L. Hicks Jr., MD, FACS – Fellowship Director
|Number of Fellowships: 2
Duration (in years) / Type: 1 or 2 year / 1 year clinical; 1 year research|1 year clinical
Head and Neck/Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Faculty:
Ayham Al Afif MD, FRCSC
Vishal Gupta, MD
Wesley L. Hicks, Jr., MD, FACS
M. Abraham Kuriakose, MD, FRCS
Robert Lohman, MD, FACS
Michael Markiewicz DDS, MD, FACS
Ryan McSpadden, MD
Wong Moon, MD, FACS
Can Ozturk, MD
Cemile Nurdan Ozturk, MD
Paul I. Tomljanovich, MD
Kimberly E. Wooten, MD, FACS
Non-Surgical Faculty Affiliated with the Fellowship:
Anurag Singh, MD – Radiation Oncology
Hesham Taha, MD – Medical Oncology
Ahmed Belal, MD – Neuroradiology
Ronald Alberico, MD – Neuroradiology
Mihai Merzianu, MD – Pathology
Norbert Sule, MD – Pathology
Vladimir Frias, DDS, MS – Prosthodontics and Implantology
Sunita Manuballa, DDS – Dentistry
Nirmala Tasgaonkar, DDS – Dentistry
Lynn Sigurdson, PhD – Head & Neck, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Research
William Magner, PhD – Head & Neck, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Research
Subin Surendran, PhD – Head & Neck, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Research
Hannah Fraser, P.A. – C.
April Petrik, F.N.P. – C.
Janice Proy, F.N.P.-B.C.
Jeffrey Reynolds, P.A. – C
Jennifer Reynolds, A.G.N.P.
Sarah Crance, M.S., C.C.C/S.L.P.
James M. Smaldino, M.S., C.C.C./S.L.P.
Lauren Snyder, M.S., C.C.C./S.L.P.
Amy Sumbrum, M.A., C.C.C./S.L.P.
Lindsay Wachowiak, M.A., C.C.C./S.L.P.
Overview: Roswell Park Cancer Institute, founded in 1898, by Dr. Roswell Park, is the oldest cancer center in the United States and has been a National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center since 1974. The Institute is a teaching hospital and has an academic affiliation with the State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY at Buffalo). In addition to the head and neck fellows, the department provides training to residents in general surgery and otolaryngology. The Head and Neck Surgery/Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Department is committed to the comprehensive care of the head and neck oncology patient. The department works closely with the Departments of Pathology, Radiation Oncology, Medical Oncology, and Dentistry and Maxillofacial Prosthetics to provide this care. In addition, the department provides comprehensive rehabilitation and speech therapy. The surgical staff members are fellowship-trained Head and Neck Surgeons with backgrounds in Otolaryngology, General Surgery, and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. We evaluate > 1,200 new patients annually, with > 15,000 outpatient visits. Our department oversees > 1200 major operative procedures per year, and > 200 minor procedures.
Highlights: We perform >70 microvascular head and neck free flap reconstructions annually, utilizing the full breadth of donor sites including the subscapular system. We also offer jaw-in-a-day mandibular reconstruction surgeries for select patients, working closely with our colleagues in dentistry and prosthodontics. Our department oversees a high volume of complex endocrine (thyroid and parathyroid) procedures, and anterior skull base procedures, working closely with the neurosurgery departments at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and SUNY at Buffalo. We also perform a breadth of transoral laser microsurgery (TLM), and transoral robotic surgeries (TORS) for laryngeal and oropharyngeal tumors.
Eligibility: The Head and Neck Department offers a one-year clinical and two-year clinical and research fellowship in Head and Neck Surgery and Oncology. Positions will be filled through the American Head and Neck Society Fellowship Match. The fellowship is open to qualified applicants who have completed a residency program in Otolaryngology, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, or General Surgery. The fellowship is approved by the Advanced Training Council on Oncologic Surgery of the American Head and Neck Society. The candidate must be able to secure licensure in the State of New York.
Objectives: To provide a comprehensive exposure to head and neck ablative and microvascular reconstructive surgery, TLM, TORS, endocrine surgery and endoscopic/open skull base surgery. Our fellowship graduates will possess outstanding clinical judgement and decision making in the treatment and diagnosis of head and neck cancer patients and will strive to be leaders and clinical educators.
1. High volume surgical service, with comprehensive ablative (mucosal, salivary, cutaneous, endocrine) and reconstructive procedures.
2. Exposure to TLM, TORS and endoscopic skull base surgery.
3. Robust research infrastructure, with ongoing projects and NIH- supported grants in clinical and translational research.
4. The fellow’s learning may be supplemented by attending various courses and conferences, including the Microvascular Fellow Bootcamp Course and TORS courses.
5. Weekly teaching seminars/journal clubs with lectures by faculty members on numerous topics in head and neck oncology and reconstruction.
6. Opportunities for teaching residents and medical students.
Supervision, Teaching and Call: The fellow is expected to attend and actively participate in the Head and Neck Fellow Teaching Seminars. These lectures are delivered weekly by faculty, and run over a 12 month span, with topics covering all facets of head and neck oncology and reconstruction. The topics and content closely mirror the National Standardized Head and Neck Curriculum proposed by the AHNS. The fellow will have appropriate faculty supervision, and as they progress through their training, they will transition to the role of lead surgeon with increasing levels of autonomy in leading residents through procedures. On-call duties only cover head and neck cancer in-patients, due to the lack of an emergency room in the hospital. Call is rotated between the fellow and residents on service.
Fellows’ Duties and Responsibilities: For the head and neck fellow, in-depth experience is gained in all aspects of head and neck ablative and reconstructive surgery. The fellow will be involved in at least 250 surgical procedures during their fellowship. The fellow is involved in the assessment, preoperative care, postoperative care, rehabilitation, and long-term follow-up of patients. Weekly Multidisciplinary Tumor Board Conferences are run by the fellow. The fellow oversees the residents on the head and neck surgery service. The fellow is expected to attend half- to a full-day of clinic per week, alongside any of the attending surgeons in the department.
Research Opportunities and Requirements: The 1-year (clinical) fellow is expected to have one clinical research project for the year. The structure of the two-year curriculum and its specific content are developed by the program director, attending staff and is a combination of clinical and research activities, with a minimum of 12 months of clinical rotation.
Research activities include NIH grant-supported basic science research within the department, as well as clinical research. The research infrastructure in the department is robust, with 2 full time PhD scientists and post-doctoral fellows overseeing ongoing projects. Further, there are multiple medical students contributing to database collection and manuscript preparation. There are several collaborative projects with scientists locally at SUNY at Buffalo, and internationally through the Translational Research Group (TRG) on a multitude of clinical, basic science and machine learning projects.
2010-2011 – Liana Lugo Recart, MD (Private Practice, Macon, GA)
2009-2012 – Vishal Gupta, MD (Assistant Professor, Roswell Park Cancer Center)
2012-2013 – Ambujakshan Dildeep, MD (Assistant Professor, University of Arizona College of Medicine)
2013-2014 – Robinder Singh, MD FACS (Private Practice, Great Neck, NY)
2014-2016 – Kimberly Wooten, MD (Assistant Professor, Roswell Park Cancer Center)
2014-2016 – Christina Mimikos, DO (Private Practice, Portland ME)
2016-2018 – Mariangela Rivera, MD (Assistant Professor, University of South Carolina)
2016-2017 – Usama Aboelkheir, MD (VA Hospital, Minneapolis, MN)
2017-2018 – Mark Falco, MD (Microsurgery Fellow, UNLV)
2018-2019 – Laila Al Masaoudi, MD (Assistant Professor, Sultan Qaboos University, Oman)
2018-2019 – Ahmed Abdelmeguid, MD (Fellow, Head & Neck Surgery, Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA)
2019-2020 – Tony Richa, MD (Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
2019-2020 – Jillian Bartling, DO (Private Practice, Potsdam, NY)
2020-2021 – Hisham Hatoum, MD (Private Practice, Wilmington, NC)
2021-2023 – Jeremy Diehl, DO (current fellow)
2022-2023 – Kia Jones, MD (fellow match for 2022)