March 19, 2015

Prominent thoracic transplant surgeon joins UAB Department of Surgery

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Charles HoopesA prominent surgeon in thoracic transplantation and mechanical circulatory support recently joined the Department of Surgery at the UAB School of Medicine.

Charles W. Hoopes, M.D., professor of Surgery, is the new chief of the Section of Thoracic Transplantation, where he will lead efforts in heart and lung transplantation, as well as artificial heart and lung devices.

“Chuck Hoopes is a pre-eminent surgeon and superb researcher,” said James K. Kirklin, director of the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery.  “Around the county, there are a large number of surgeons interested in lung transplants, heart transplants or ventricular assist devices, but there are very few surgeons who have extensive academic and clinical experience in all three areas.”

Hoopes comes to UAB from the University of Kentucky School of Medicine where he was director of the Center for Transplantation and Organ Failure and section chief of Cardiopulmonary Transplant. He previously worked as Cardiopulmonary Transplant section chief and director of Mechanical Circulatory Support Programs at the University of California San Francisco.

UAB is one of about 65 active lung transplantation centers and among 329 heart transplantation centers in the United States. In 2014, 21 lung transplants and 20 heart transplants were performed at UAB, said Martha Tankersley, transplant administrator at UAB Hospital. UAB surgeons utilize mechanical circulatory support, like ventricular assist devices (VADS) and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), as a short-term solution for patients awaiting heart and lung transplants.

 “We are very excited about Dr. Hoopes joining our faculty and assuming a leadership role for the Lung Transplant Program,” said Anthony Patterson, RN, MSHA, senior vice president of Inpatient Services at UAB Hospital. “We look forward to his contributions given his experiential base.”

Hoopes earned his undergraduate degree from Lebanon Valley College in Annville, Penn. and a master’s degree in Anthropology from Wake Forest University before earning his medical degree from Duke University in 1992.  He completed a general surgery residency and a surgical research fellowship in molecular genetics and transplantation, as well as a fellowship in thoracic transplantation and mechanical circulatory support at Duke University. He also completed a thoracic surgery residency at the University of Michigan.

Hoopes is a fellow in the American College of Surgeons and the American College of Chest Physicians, as well as a member of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Western Thoracic Surgical Association, American Society of Transplant Surgeons and Southern Thoracic Surgical Association.

“He’s a delightful person and is incredibly knowledgeable in all these areas,” Kirklin said. "He will undoubtedly help enhance the reputation of UAB in the areas of heart and lung transplants and VADS.”