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Duke Surgery Appoints New Division Chief of Trauma and Critical Care Surgery

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

The Duke Department of Surgery is pleased to announce the appointment of Suresh K. Agarwal Jr., MD, as the new Chief of the Division of Trauma and Critical Care Surgery. Dr. Agarwal comes to Duke from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health where he has served as Chief of the Division of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery and Chief of Trauma Services. His other roles at the University of Wisconsin have included Program Director of the Surgical Critical Care and Acute Care Surgery Fellowship, Medical Director of Trauma, and Staff Surgeon at William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital.

“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Agarwal to the Department of Surgery,” says Dr. Allan D. Kirk, the David C. Sabiston, Jr. Chair of the Department and Surgeon-in-Chief for the Duke Health System. “Dr. Agarwal is a superb surgeon, and has had spectacular success in growing a robust trauma, critical care, and emergency general surgery program at the University of Wisconsin. Through his work in Madison, he has clearly distinguished himself as a surgical leader of national caliber. He also has the vision to bring Duke’s program to the next level academically, and I believe our program will make substantial ground in understanding the fundamental nature of critical surgical illness and injury.”

Dr. Agarwal received his medical degree from the University of Pittsburgh, followed by his residency at the Hospital of Saint Raphael in New Haven, Conn. He completed a fellowship in Trauma Surgery at Hartford Hospital, a fellowship in Surgical Critical Care at the University of Connecticut, and a fellowship in Thoracic Surgery at the University of Wisconsin.

Dr. Agarwal is board certified in General Surgery and Surgery Critical Care, specializing in emergency surgery, laparoscopic surgery, lower and upper GI surgery, chest wall stabilization, hernia surgery, resuscitation, trauma, and wound healing. He serves as principal investigator on several grants funded by the National Institutes of Health, the National Trauma Institute, and the Department of Defense.

Dr. Agarwal is a member of the American College of Surgeons, the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma, the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Society of Critical Care Medicine, the American Association of Chest Physicians, the Association of Academic Surgery, and the Society of University Surgeons. He currently serves on the Editorial Boards for Trauma Surgery and Acute Care Open, Intensive Care Unit Director, Journal of Surgical Research, and Medicine.

Dr. Agarwal will take the reins as Division Chief from Dr. Cynthia Shortell. Says Dr. Kirk, “Dr. Shortell has done a masterful job in her interim leadership role over the past year, putting the Division on solid footing and paving the way for Dr. Agarwal to launch his vision from a position of strength.”

“I am grateful to Drs. Kirk and Shortell, the members of the search committee, and the Duke Community for the opportunity to work with the members of the Division of Trauma and Critical Care Surgery,” says Dr. Agarwal. “I look forward to joining the environment of hard work and collegiality that Drs. Shortell and Steven Vaslef have established. By working together, I hope that we will be successful and join the rest of the Department of Surgery in making outstanding clinical, educational, and research contributions at the regional, national, and international levels.”