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Our Faculty

  • John Persing

    Section Chief

    Irving and Silik Polayes Professor of Surgery (Plastic); Section Chief

    Dr. John A. Persing is a doubly Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and Neurological Surgeon. He is passionate about improving the quality of life of children born with craniofacial defects and individuals affected by cancer, trauma, deformities, and aesthetic concerns. He believes that all people deserve a chance at a better life, regardless of economic and world boundaries.

    Dr. Persing earned his medical degree from the University of Vermont in 1974. He has been President of the Plastic Surgery Foundation, the American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons, the Association of Academic Chairmen of Plastic Surgery, the American Association of Pediatric Plastic Surgeons, among others, and served as Chair of the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He is past President of the American Association of Plastic Surgeons, and received the Clinician of the Year Award in 2010, as well as the James Barrett Brown award for the best journal article published in Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in 2015.

    Dr. Persing has a focus on improving the quality of patients’ lives regardless of whether this is a cosmetic or reconstructive concern. His clinical interests are craniofacial deformities, vascular malformations, and cosmetic surgery of the face and body.

    Connecticut Magazine named Dr. Persing among the best in the state in its annual "Top Doctors" issue in the 2016 edition, along with America's Best Doctors (Castle-Connolly) and Who's Who in Medicine.

    Learn more about the Section Chief of Yale Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

  • Michael Alperovich

    Assistant Professor of Surgery (Plastic)

    A native of Connecticut, Dr. Michael Alperovich is a Board Certified plastic surgeon, full-time faculty member, and Co-Director of Craniofacial Surgery at Yale University. He is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University, attended the University of Oxford for graduate school receiving Distinction honors, and graduated Alpha Omega Alpha from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Dr. Alperovich completed an integrated plastic surgery residency and a craniofacial and microsurgical reconstructive fellowship at New York University's Department of Plastic Surgery. He also has clinical expertise in facial, breast and body aesthetic surgery.

    He has authored over sixty peer-reviewed publications and multiple plastic surgery book chapters. A two-time recipient of the Blair Rogers research award during training, he has presented nationally and internationally in the areas of craniofacial surgery, microvascular surgery, and breast reconstruction. He serves on the Editorial Board of three plastic surgery journals as well as contributes as an ad hoc reviewer for several other journals.

  • Stephan Ariyan

    Frank F. Kanthak Professor Emeritus of Surgery

    Dr. Stephan Ariyan is the Frank F. Kanthak Professor of Surgery, Plastic Surgery, and Otolaryngology at Yale School of Medicine. He was Professor and Chairman of Plastic Surgery at Yale from 1979 to 1991. At that time, he returned to the Graduate School of Business at the University of New Haven and earned an MBA in 1993.

    An internationally known surgeon, Dr. Ariyan specializes in the surgery of the head and neck, and malignant melanoma. He has been recognized for the origination and development of several myocutaneous flaps for reconstructions of the head and neck - most notably the pectoralis major flap, which has become the most commonly used flap for head and neck reconstruction worldwide. He received his medical degree from New York Medical College. He interned at UCLA, then completed training in General Surgery as well as Plastic Surgery at Yale University School of Medicine, becoming certified by the American Board of Surgery, and the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He was then asked to join the faculty at Yale in 1976, was appointed the Chairman of Plastic Surgery in 3 years, and rose to the rank of tenured full Professor of Surgery in another 2 years. Dr. Ariyan has been recognized for this work by his professional colleagues, as published in several national publications for the public. Dr. Ariyan has served as an officer of a number of national and regional professional organizations and has been the recipient of several national and international awards. Dr. Ariyan has authored or co-authored more than 300 scientific papers, four surgical books (one of them, The Handbook, has been published in three editions in English, Spanish, and Japanese). He has served on the editorial boards of two surgical journals, and as a reviewer of five additional surgical journals. Dr. Ariyan has made major contributions to the field of surgery through his research and publications.

  • Tomer Avraham

    Assistant Professor; Assistant Professor of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery

    Tomer Avraham, MD is a board certified plastic surgeon who specializes in breast reconstruction.  He believes in a personalized approach to the patient, with the goal of a natural and restorative outcome.  Dr. Avraham utilizes all techniques of breast reconstruction, and has specific interest and training in the use of autologous reconstruction, such as the DIEP flap.  

    Dr. Avraham obtained his MD from Tufts University in Boston.  Following this, he completed his plastic surgery residency, as well as specialized microsurgery fellowship training, at the NYU Department of Plastic Surgery.  Additionally, Dr. Avraham completed a research fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York where he was appointed Chief Fellow and was awarded the Chairman's Award for Excellence in Research.  Dr. Avraham is well published both in the basic science and clinical literature, and currently has a research interest in outcomes following breast reconstruction.  

  • James Clune

    Assistant Professor

    Dr. James Clune is an Assistant Professor of Surgery, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Yale School of Medicine. Dr. Clune specializes in reconstruction of melanoma and sarcoma defects of the face/scalp, and procedures that treat tumors of the upper extremity, brachial plexus tumors, brachial plexus reconstruction, pediatric hand anomalies, peripheral nerves. Research interests include  targeted muscle reinnervation after tumor extirpation or amputation and isolated limb perfusion of the extremities for soft tissue tumors

    Dr. Clune graduated from Wesleyan University and attained his medical degree from the George Washington University School of Medicine. He then completed a post-doctoral research fellowship at Children's Hospital Boston in craniofacial reconstruction. His specialty training in Plastic and Reconstructive surgery was completed at Yale with a special research focus in melanoma, followed by a fellowship in upper extremity surgery at the University of California and Shriners Hospital for Children Los Angeles with Dr. Neil Ford Jones where he focused on reconstruction of the upper extremity, soft tissue tumors of the extremities and peripheral nerve and brachial plexus reconstruction.

    After completion of fellowship in California additional training was completed in Madrid, Spain in adult and pediatric brachial plexus reconstruction at the Hospital Universitario La Paz with Dr. Aleksandar Lovic and reconstructive microsurgery in Santander, Spain with Dr. Francisco Pinal.

  • Henry C. Hsia

    Associate Professor of Surgery (Plastic); Founding Director, Yale Regenerative Wound Healing Center

    Dr. Henry Hsia is a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon at Yale School of Medicine who has dedicated his professional life to finding innovative wound treatments for patients through basic and clinical research. Graduating magna cum laude from Harvard University, Dr. Hsia received a scholarship to study at Cambridge University (Trinity College) in England before returning to the US to pursue his medical degree at Yale University, where he also completed an American Heart Association Research Fellowship. He then went on to complete his surgical residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital before receiving his certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery and admission as a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons.

    Dr. Hsia's clinical training at Yale provided a strong foundation to understand how the body responds to injury from illness and trauma as well as firsthand knowledge of the limitations of current therapies for treating difficult wounds and the great challenges in developing novel treatments that can be widely adopted by practitioners. In order to gain a deeper understanding of the fundamental biological processes underlying wound healing, Dr. Hsia upon completing his surgical training became a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Molecular Biology at Princeton University where he was funded by the National Institutes of Health. He subsequently became a member of the surgical faculty at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Brunswick, NJ, where he practiced for several years performing plastic and reconstructive surgery, in addition to teaching and training surgical residents and medical students as well as running a funded research laboratory that focused on issues related to wound healing and regenerative healing.

    Dr. Hsia is credentialed at Yale-New Haven Hospital and the West Haven campus of the VA Connecticut Healthcare System and is leading ongoing collaborative efforts by the Yale-New Haven Health System and Yale School of Medicine in conjunction with the VA Connecticut Healthcare System to develop an expanded program in wound care and regenerative healing.

  • David J Leffell

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

    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.

  • Deepak Narayan

    Professor of Surgery (Plastic); Chief, Plastic Surgery West Haven VA

    Dr. Deepak Narayan specialized in the treatment of melanomas and skin cancers. He graduated from the University of Madras and received his training in General Surgery and Plastic Surgery at the Yale New Haven Hospital and Yale University. While at Yale, he completed a research fellowship in Surgical Oncology and is Board Certified in Surgery and Plastic Surgery. As a melanoma surgeon with extensive experience, Dr. Narayan provided patients with a unique resource of treating melanomas as well as reconstructing the defects that can occur from melanoma surgery. In addition, he was an expert in specialized procedures for melanoma treatment, such as sentinel node biopsies, axillary node dissection, radical neck dissection, parotidectomies, iliac node dissections, and isolated limb infusions. His other areas of expertise included hemangiomas and vascular malformations. He pioneered new reconstructive techniques for cancer, and has over 120 publications in peer-reviewed journals. He had an active research interest in melanomas and was a co-investigator in the prestigious, NIH-funded SPORE (Special Program of Research Excellence) Grant. He has won numerous awards for research, teaching, and clinical excellence and has been continually listed in “Americas Top Surgeons” since 2002 and “The Best Doctors in America” since 2007. In addition, he has received the following awards for his research: American Cancer Society, Basic Oncology Research Award 1995 Swebilius Cancer Research Award American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons Research Award 1998, 2009 Patient Care: Yale Melanoma and Skin Cancer,

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    Deepak Narayan, MBBS, FRCS


    The Department of Surgery mourns the loss of a dear friend, colleague, esteemed professor and faculty member; at 58 years young, Dr. Deepak Narayan lost his battle with cancer on Christmas Eve. As professor of surgery, Residency Program director, and interim director of the Cancer Center’s Melanoma Program, Deepak made remarkable clinical and academic contributions, and held key leadership roles both at Yale and nationally. He will be sorely missed by all who were touched by his life and gifts.

    Deepak was born in India, where he began his medical career. He obtained his Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons in the United Kingdom, and joined the Yale Surgery family shortly thereafter when he began his general surgery residency. He completed a research fellowship at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, and a subsequent research fellowship in the Departments of Surgery and Genetics at Yale. Deepak completed his general surgery residency at the University of Connecticut Health center in Farmington, where he won every award offered at graduation for clinical excellence, research, humanism, and professionalism. Yale’s plastic surgery residency was next, followed by academic appointment in the Section of Plastic Surgery. Deepak quickly rose the ranks to full professor and chief of Plastic Surgery at the VA Connecticut Healthcare System in West Haven, where he served for the past 15 years.

    Perhaps Deepak’s greatest legacy was his work in the field of melanoma. He was a longtime member of the Yale Cancer Center’s Melanoma Program, ultimately rising to the level of interim director, when he was afflicted by disease. He will be remembered for his prodigious and vast clinical knowledge base and his ability to develop innovative solutions for the most complex multidisciplinary cases.

    As an inspiring leader and NIH R01-funded surgeon-scientist, he served as a research mentor for more than 37 research fellows, lectured from distinguished podiums around the world, and was published in numerous reputable journals. He held leadership roles with many national organizations, including the American Association of Plastic Surgeons, the New England Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (President 2017-18), and the American Board of Plastic Surgery, among others. Deepak was instrumental in partnering with the local and national Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education for the successful expansion of the Yale plastic surgery residency program.

    What is not captured in the review of Deepak’s work, is his self-effacing, wry humor, and his keen interest in everything from ornithology to medical history. Deepak is an irreplaceable human being with a generous heart and creative mind. His many friends will not forget his smile, creativity, and friendship. He is survived by his father H.B.N Shetty, brother Prasanth Shetty, and sisters Shobha Shetty and Aruna Gupta. A memorial service is planned for the spring; details will be forthcoming.

  • Adnan Prsic

    Assistant Professor

    Dr. Adnan Prsic is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Surgery, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. He is a fellowship-trained hand surgeon who specializes in disorders of the hand, wrist, and forearm caused by congenital differences or trauma. Dr. Prsic has a unique training background with both Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery as well as advanced training in the care of the upper extremity at an Orthopaedic Hand Surgery Fellowship.

    He attended Bowdoin College and Harvard Medical School. His love of New England led him to Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Training at New England’s oldest residency at Brown University. In search of complete training of the hand and upper extremity Dr. Prsic joined the University of Washington Department of Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine as a hand and microsurgery fellow. There he trained with leaders in hand surgery and focused on traumatic injuries as well as acquired and congenital complex hand and wrist problems. His training was completed at Harborview Medical Center, one of the busiest trauma hospitals in the United States. 

    At Harborview Medical Center he also became a research fellow in the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center (HIPRC) and studied brachial plexus injuries. He has authored several book chapters and research studies on traumatic injuries of the hand.  Dr. Prsic’s research interests are in hand trauma, 3D printed medical devices and medical education. He is a dedicated and passionate medical educator and was recognized with prestigious awards like the Alpha Omega Alpha and The Gold Foundation Humanism in Medicine Award

  • Derek Steinbacher

    Associate Professor of Surgery (Plastic); Chief of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Chief of Dentistry, Director of Craniofacial Surgery

    Dr. Steinbacher is a Board Certified Plastic and Reconstructive surgeon who specializes in cleft, craniofacial, and maxillofacial surgery. His clinical interests also include cosmetic surgery of the face and body, rhinoplasty, facial reanimation for palsy, and facial reconstruction. His research encompasses tissue engineering and regeneration, fat grafting, distraction osteogenesis, stress shielding, and 3-dimensional analysis and planning.

    Dr. Steinbacher obtained his MD from Harvard Medical School and his DMD from the University of Pennsylvania, both with honors. He received fellowship training in craniofacial surgery from Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, completed the plastic and reconstructive surgery program at Johns Hopkins Hospital, and trained in oral/maxillofacial and general surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital.

    Learn more about one of Yale Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery's Craniofacial and Maxillofacial surgeons.

  • J. Grant Thomson

    Professor of Surgery (Plastic); Director, Yale Hand & Microsurgery Program

    Dr. J. Grant Thomson, a Board-Certified Hand Surgeon and a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, is deeply interested in helping children and adults with congenital and acquired hand and upper extremity issues, and individuals whose bodies have been changed by cancer treatment. Dr. Thomson earned his medical degree from McGill University in 1983. He specializes in hand, wrist, and upper extremity surgery.

    Dr. Thomson's special interests include endoscopic carpal tunnel release, trigger finger treatment, Dupuytren’s contracture, arthritic hand reconstruction, brachial plexus reconstruction, peripheral nerve surgery, occupational disorders of the upper extremity, and trauma-related pain. His clinical practice also includes reconstructive microsurgery. He uses his expertise to reach across borders to children and adults in developing countries.

    Since 1998, Dr. Thomson has been leading groups of professionals on volunteer surgical expeditions, and these teams have affected the lives of over 800 individuals. His research interests include flap physiology, microsurgery, tendon repair, and breast reconstruction.

    Patient Care

    Please call 203.737.5130 to contact Dr. Thomson.