Under its "exceptional" designation from the National Cancer Institute, Penn Medicine is home to one of only 51 "comprehensive" cancer centers in the United States – and one of just three in Pennsylvania. This designation is awarded to institutions that meet rigorous standards for state-of-the-art research focused on developing new and improved approaches to preventing, diagnosing and treating cancer as well as multidisciplinary laboratory, clinical and population-based research which is translated into innovative cancer care.
In the closing months of 2021, surgical teams have expanded both the defining characteristics and the diversity of cancer leadership in four Departments and Divisions, including Orthopaedics, Urology, Neurosurgery, and Endocrine and Oncologic Surgery. Meet five new physician leaders who are at the forefront of cancer care at Penn Medicine.
Nduka M. Amankulor, MD, new Chief of Neurosurgical Oncology, and Director of the Penn Brain Tumor Center, joined Penn Neurosurgery in October 2021.
The former Director of Neurosurgical Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Dr. Amankulor specializes in the treatment of primary and metastatic brain tumors, hydrocephalus, and spine, intraventricular and skull base tumors.
Additions to the Division of Urology include Trinity J. Bivalacqua, MD, PhD, and Philip M. Pierorazio, MD.
New Chief of Urologic Oncology at Penn Medicine, Dr. Bivalacqua is an authority in the fields of urologic oncology and sexual medicine whose research has focused on peripheral nerve biology, genitourinary malignancies, and tissue engineering, among much else.
Another October arrival, Dr. Pierorazio is Chief of Urology at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center. He is a surgical specialist with expertise in open, minimally-invasive and robotic surgeries for all malignancies of the urinary tract.
Cara A. Cipriano, MD, MSc, is now the Chief of Orthopaedic Oncology at Penn Medicine.
A graduate of the Perelman School of Medicine, Dr. Cipriano is an accomplished surgical specialist in orthopaedic oncology and adult reconstruction. She treats benign and malignant tumors of the musculoskeletal system and soft tissues.
New Chief of Breast Surgery at Penn Medicine, Oluwadamilola "Lola" Fayanju, MD, MA, MPHS, FACS, is also Surgical Director at the Rena Rowan Breast Center.
Recognized by the National Academy of Medicine as an Emerging Leader in Health and Medicine Scholar in 2019, Dr. Fayanju brings a superlatives background and expertise in breast cancer surgery to Penn Medicine. Her research interests include health disparities, aggressive breast cancer variants, and improving value in oncology.