Dr. Valerie Rusch

Thoracic Surgeon at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Dr. Valerie Rusch is one of the most famous mesothelioma specialists in the world. She is a thoracic surgeon and researcher who spearheads innovative clinical trials at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

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Pleural Mesothelioma

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Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10065

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More About Mesothelioma Specialist Dr. Valerie Rusch

Dr. Rusch is Vice Chair for Clinical Research in the Department of Surgery. She works at one of the most famous cancer centers in the world: Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York City.

Dr. Rusch is also the Miner Family Chair in Intrathoracic Cancers for the hospital. Her clinical expertise includes:

  • Thoracic surgical oncology
  • Lung cancer
  • Tumors of the chest wall

She was named a New York Magazine Top Doctor from 2002-2004 and 2013-2020.

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Medical Degrees and Residencies

    • Medical Degree from Columbia University in New York City
    • Residency in General Surgery at University of Washington in Seattle
    • Residency in Cardiovascular Surgery at University of Washington in Seattle
    • Fellowship in Thoracic Oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston
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Certifications and Memberships

    • Board-certified in General Surgery and Thoracic Surgery
    • Chair of the American Board of Thoracic Surgery
    • Regent of the American College of Surgeons
    • Chair of the Lung and Esophagus Task Force of the American Joint Committee on Cancer
    • Chair of the Mesothelioma Subcommittee of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer’s Staging Committee

Get Connected to Dr. Valerie Rusch

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Dr. Valerie Rusch is one of the most prominent and famous mesothelioma specialists in the world. She is a trailblazer in medical research and thoracic surgical oncology. She also works at one of the top cancer centers in the world.

Why Choose Dr. Rusch?

  • Holds high-ranking title at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Has more than 30 years of experience in thoracic oncology
  • Became first woman board-certified for thoracic surgery








Diagnosis:


Trailblazing Thoracic Surgeon and Mesothelioma Specialist

Dr. Rusch has nearly 30 years of thoracic oncology experience and was one of the first women in the United States to become board-certified for this specialty. She has inspired many women to follow in her footsteps to become thoracic surgeons.

Dr. Rusch believes in video-assisted thoracic surgery and robotics-assisted operations. For mesothelioma, these technologies help during diagnosis and staging.

She is part of a Thoracic Disease Management Team at Memorial Sloan Kettering, which also has a Thoracic Tumor Board. These features are part of Dr. Rusch’s research and oncology efforts.

In 1983, she joined the University of Washington (Seattle) staff as a thoracic surgeon. After six years at the hospital, she became a thoracic specialist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She has been at the hospital since 1989 performing mesothelioma surgery.

In addition to her work at Memorial Sloan Kettering, Dr. Rusch is:

  • Chair of the Mesothelioma Subcommittee for the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer’s Staging Committee
  • Chair of the American Board of Thoracic Surgery

Active in Clinical Trials

Clinical trials for mesothelioma offer new avenues for treatment, especially to patients who’ve exhausted traditional methods like chemotherapy.

Memorial Sloan Kettering is one of the most active cancer centers in mesothelioma clinical trials. Dr. Rusch is often listed as the principal investigator on the clinical trial pages.

“We are proud of our active participation in national and international clinical trials and are studying many new ways to help people with the most difficult cancers, including better methods to diagnose cancers at an earlier stage and the testing of new cancer treatments,” Dr. Rusch’s bio on the Memorial Sloan Kettering website reads.

She was part of a CAR T-cell therapy study for mesothelioma recently. The CAR T-cell therapy, called IcasM28z, led to a median survival of two years. CAR T-cell therapy is a type of immunotherapy and gene therapy.

She also revealed years ago that complications are common when using intraoperative radiation therapy with extrapleural pneumonectomy.

Connect With Dr. Gharagozloo for Treatment

Dr. Rusch remains active in clinical trials and seeing cases of malignant pleural mesothelioma. Her and the thoracic team at Memorial Sloan Kettering are among the elite options for medical care.

Let us help you connect with Dr. Rusch and her staff. Email karen@mesotheliomaguide.com to contact Karen Ritter, RN, who’s our lead patient advocate. You can also send us your diagnosis information by filling out a Doctor Match form. This feature is free of charge and helps us focus your search for a doctor.

Sources & Author

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About the Writer, Devin Golden

Devin Golden is the content writer for Mesothelioma Guide. He produces mesothelioma-related content on various mediums, including the Mesothelioma Guide website and social media channels. Devin's objective is to translate complex information regarding mesothelioma into informative, easily absorbable content to help patients and their loved ones.