David Leffell, MD

David P. Smith Professor of Dermatology and Professor of Surgery (Otolaryngology and Plastic); Section Chief, Dermatologic Surgery and Cutaneous Oncology

Departments & Organizations

Cancer Center, Yale: Cancer Genetics & Genomics | Head and Neck Cancer Surgery Program | Melanoma Program

Cancer Genetics

Dermatology: Mohs Surgery | Skin Diseases Research Center, Yale

Office of Student Research

Yale Medical Group


A graduate of Yale College and the McGill University Faculty of Medicine in Montreal, Leffell completed his residency training in internal medicine at Cornell Cooperating Hospitals and then in dermatology at Yale-New Haven Hospital. He comlpeted an NIH post-dcotoral research fellowship in dermatology at Yale followed by a clinical fellowship in dermatologic surgery at the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor. Author of the popular book "Total Skin," Leffell is an expert clinician, specializing in skin cancer and melanoma diagnosis and surgical treatment using the Mohs micrographic technique. The Cutaneous Oncology Unit that he founded in 1988 now performs specialized surgical treatment on more than 3,500 patients annually. His major clinical interest is the management of skin cancer, including basal cell cancer, squamous cell cancer and melanoma. In 1996 Leffell was a member of the research group that discovered the skin cancer gene known as PTCH. In addition, he has conducted collaborative research clarifying the role of ultraviolet radiation in skin cancer and skin aging. Author of more than 150 publications, Leffell has also done research on epidemiologic aspects of skin cancer and wound healing.

Education & Training

MD McGill University (1981)
BS Yale College, Biology (1977)
Fellow University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI
N.I.H Postdoctoral Fellow Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT
Resident Yale-New Haven Hospital, New Haven, CT
Resident Cornell Cooperating Hospitals
Intern Cornell Cooperating Hospitals
Board Certification AB of Dermatology, Dermatology (1987)

Honors & Recognition

  • Best Doctors in AmericaCastle & Connolly (2013)

  • Best Doctors in New YorkCastle and Connolly (2013)

Professional Service

  • Medical Editor Dermatology Focus (publication of The Dermatology Foundation) (2004 - 2014)

  • Society for Investigative Dermatology, Committee on Resident/ Fellow Programs (2004 - 2008)

  • Women's Dermatologic Society, Networking Committee (1998 - 2001)

  • Women's Dermatologic Society, Mentorship Award Committee (1998 - 2001)

  • American Academy of Dermatology

  • Society for Investigative Dermatology

  • Dermatology Foundation

  • Women’s Dermatologic Society

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Contact Info

David Leffell, MD
Patient Care Locations
Yale Dermatologic SurgeryTemple Medical Center
40 Temple Street, Ste 5th Floor, Suite 5A

New Haven, CT 06510
Yale Melanoma ProgramSmilow Cancer Hospital at Yale - New Haven
35 Park Street, Ste 4th Floor

New Haven, CT 06511
Yale Head & Neck Cancer ProgramSmilow Cancer Hospital at Yale - New Haven
35 Park Street, Ste 4th Floor

New Haven, CT 06511
Office Location
Yale Dermatologic SurgeryTemple Medical Center
40 Temple Street, Ste 5A

New Haven, CT 06510
Mailing Address
DermatologyPO Box 208059
333 Cedar Street

New Haven, CT 06520-8059

Curriculum Vitae