Bruce Gewertz, MD

Surgeon-in-Chief, Chair of the Department of Surgery
Vice-President for Interventional Services
Vice Dean of Academic Affairs
H & S Nichols Distinguished Chair in Surgery

Bruce L. Gewertz, MD is Surgeon-in-Chief, Chair of the Department of Surgery , Vice-President for Interventional Services and Vice-Dean of Academic Affairs at Cedars-Sinai Health System in Los Angeles. He also holds the H & S Nichols Distinguished Chair in Surgery.

Dr. Gewertz was educated at Pennsylvania State University and Jefferson Medical College in the combined bachelor's of science-medical degree five-year program. Following his graduation from medical school in 1972, Dr. Gewertz trained in general and vascular surgery at the University of Michigan. From 1977 to 1981, he served on the faculty at Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, Texas.  He moved to the University of Chicago in 1981, where he remained until 2006.

From 1989 to 1992, Dr. Gewertz served as the first Faculty Dean of Medical Education at the University of Chicago, leading a revision of the undergraduate medical school curriculum funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.  In 1992, he was named Dallas B. Phemister Professor and Chairman, Department of Surgery and served in this position for 14 years. His recruitment of outstanding clinicians and surgical scientists to Chicago during that era allowed the department to increase its basic and clinical research funding more than three-fold.

Since joining Cedars-Sinai in June 2006, Dr. Gewertz has provided professional leadership and oversight for a large surgical/interventional operation. A particular focus has been personnel and facility upgrades for a multi-disciplinary effort in vascular interventions incorporating vascular surgery, cardiology, neuro-endovascular and peripheral interventions. Within the Department of Surgery, Dr Gewertz has coordinated recruitments across the full spectrum of modern surgical care. The clinical activity of the department continues to increase (exceeding 30,000 procedures per year) making Cedars-Sinai Surgery one of the largest surgical programs in the country.

He has also concentrated on upgrading research efforts and administrative support for academic activities. The Cedars-Sinai general surgery residency has become highly competitive, attracting outstanding medical students from all over the United States. In the current year, more then 600 applications were submitted for the 4 yearly categorical slots. The annual National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding of the department has dramatically increased to more than $5M, elevating the department to the top 20 surgical departments in the country. Overall external research funding of the department exceeds $9 million annually.  Dr Gewertz is currently the principal investigator of a $4.4 million project funded by the Department of Defense on the optimization of human factors in civilian and military operating rooms.

Dr. Gewertz is the author of more than 200 original articles, book chapters and books including The Atlas of Vascular Surgery (Churchill Livingstone, 1993; Elsevier, 2005) and Surgery of the Aorta and Its Branches (W.B. Saunders, 2000).  His principal clinical and research interests include cerebrovascular disease (especially intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring and outcome analysis), aortic aneurysmal disease, and mesenteric ischemic syndromes. His basic research into ischemia/reperfusion injury and endothelial cell physiology has been funded by the NIH and the American Heart Association. Basic laboratory work in his last five years in Chicago focused on the cellular mechanisms leading to changes in microvascular permeability and studies of intracellular signaling by free radicals and cytokines. Since joining to Cedars-Sinai, he has redirected his research to the drivers of regional disparities in the provision of surgical services especially cerebrovascular procedures.

Dr. Gewertz has received numerous awards for his basic investigations and teaching.  These include the Jobst Award for Vascular Surgery Research, the Coller Award from the Michigan Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, the inaugural LDH Wood Distinguished Educator Career Achievement Award at University of Chicago, and the Teaching Scholars Award from the American Heart Association. He was selected Outstanding Science Alumnus by Pennsylvania State University in 2003 and Life Fellow by the Alumni Society and University in 2009. Dr. Gewertz is Editor Emeritus of the Journal of Surgical Research (Editor from 1990-1998) and has served on the Editorial Board of Annals of Vascular Surgery (1985-2005) and the Journal of Vascular Surgery (1998-2004).  A large number of invited and named lectureships throughout the years have addressed a broad range of topics in vascular disease and physiology as well as the challenges facing academic medicine. He is consistently included among Best Doctors in America (Castle-Connolly, 2001-2014), Who’s Who in America (1994-2014) and Who’s Who in the World (2000-2014).

Dr. Gewertz is a member of many national surgical organizations including the American Surgical Association, Society for Clinical Surgery, and the Central Surgical and Western Surgical Associations. Along with officer and executive committee positions in the aforementioned organizations, he has served as President of the Chicago Surgical Society, the Association for Surgical Education, the Midwestern Vascular Surgical Society and, most recently, the Western Surgical Association. He served as a director of the Vascular Surgery Board of the American Board of Surgery (2002-2008). Dr. Gewertz has participated nationally in the design and evaluation of resident and medical school activities through his leadership positions in the Association for Surgical Education and extensive involvement in the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) including the Advisory Panel on the Mission and Organization of Medical Schools (APMOMS) and the Forum on the Future of Academic Medicine. He chaired the 1993 AAMC Task Force on Integrating Teaching and Patient Care.

An enthusiastic participant in athletics, Dr. Gewertz enjoys fitness training, skiing and golf. His other interests include modern fiction and business. In 1993, he served as script consultant and medical advisor for the film The Fugitive and was included in the film in a small part that inexplicably survived the editing process.