Joseph Massa Piepmeier MD

Nixdorff-German Professor of Neurosurgery; Vice Chair of Clinical Affairs, Neurosurgery; Section Chief, Neuro-Oncology; Director, Surgical Neuro-Oncology; Clinical Research Program Leader, Brain Tumor Program, Yale Cancer Center

Research Interests

Neuro-oncology; Acoustic neuroma; General neurosurgery; Brain and spinal cord cancer; Brachytherapy; Stereotactic needle biopsy


Research Summary

Yale's neuro-oncology program puts together all of the components critical to managing patients with brain tumors: comprehensive evaluation and diagnosis, leading edge treatment options, thorough follow-up and psychosocial support. Patients are welcome whether they are newly diagnosed or have already received extensive treatment.
Calls from referring physicians, patients or their families are handled by an experienced clinical care coordinator. The coordinator ensures that appropriate appointments are made quickly. New patients with brain tumors are usually seen in the oncology clinic of the Yale Cancer Center within a couple of days. The care coordinator also acts as the patient's interface with the various medical specialists who are called into play in each treatment plan.
The patient is the focus of all of the diagnosis and treatment skills Yale's interdisciplinary team of specialists brings to the service. Neuro-oncology surgeons, radiation oncologists, neuroradiologists, medical oncologists, neurologists, neuropathologists and others meet weekly at a Tumor Board Conference to arrive at the most appropriate treatment plan for each individual. Because the Yale Cancer Center is an academic referral center, the teams of specialists have an opportunity to treat the rarest as well as the most common cancers. Because of the center's research and teaching mission, its practitioners are well acquainted with the most advanced treatment methods. Patients benefit from that knowledge and from specialized resources such as a dedicated neurological intensive care unit and the latest imaging technologies.


Selected Publications

  • Sawyer A, Piepmeier J, Saltzman M: New Methods for Direct Delivery of Chemotherapy for Treating Brain Tumors. Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine,
  • Kunwar S, Prados M, Chang S, Berger M, Lang F, Piepmeier J, Sampson J, Ram Z, Gutin P, Gibbons R, Aldape K, Croteau D, Sherman J, Puri R: Direct Intracerebral Delivery of Cintredekin Besudotox (IL13-PE38QQR) in Patients with Recurrent Malignant Glioma. J Clin Oncol 25(7):837-44, 2007
  • Baehring J, Bi L, Bannyhk S, Piepmeier J, Fulbright R: Diffusion MRI in the early diagnosis of malignant glioma. J. Neuro-oncology,
  • Piepmeier J, Thaiyananthan, T, Ocal, E: Principles of Neurosurgical Therapy. Practice and Principles of Neuro-oncology, Baehring J Piepmeier J (eds), 2006
  • Lally B, Knisely J, Piepmeier J: The interactions of polarographic measurements of oxygen tension and histological grade in human glioma. in press The Cancer Journal.

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