Meet Thoracic Surgeon James Huang

James Huang, MD



Program Director, Thoracic Surgery Fellowship and Residency; Associate Vice Chair of Education, Department of Surgery

Clinical Expertise

Lung Cancer; Thymoma and Thymic Carcinoma; Mediastinal Tumors; Sarcoma; Esophageal Cancer; Minimally Invasive Surgery; Pulmonary Metastases; Mesothelioma; Bronchoscopy


New Patient Appointments

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Mon–Fri, 8:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m., (Eastern time)
Accepted Insurance Providers

Dr. Huang accepts the following list of insurance providers. Select your insurance provider to see more details.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Aetna HMO, POS, and PPO plans. Aetna does not include us in any of the plans you can purchase through the insurance exchanges or through Medicare. Please ask your insurance if you need a one-time referral. MSK has an agreement with the Aetna Transplant Program for all Aetna's commercial products.

Blue Distinction Center

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Blue Distinction Center for bone marrow transplant and CAR-T.

Health Insurance Exchanges

We understand that there may be many complexities involved with insurance coverage purchased through the health exchange network of the Affordable Care Act. We’re here to help. If you have questions about how your care will be covered by an insurance provider, or need help navigating a change in coverage, please call us at 646-227-3378; if you are not a resident of New York, you can call us at 866-248-1274. Our team is here to listen to your concerns and assist you in any way we can. We want our care to be as accessible and affordable for as many people as possible.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with CIGNA's HMO, POS, and PPO plans. CIGNA does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

  • If you are a New York State resident: Please ask your insurance if you need a one-time referral.
  • If you live outside of New York State: Please ask your insurance if you have in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.
EmblemHealth (including GHI, HIP, ConnectiCare, and Vytra)

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with EmblemHealth’s PPO, EPO, POS, HMO plans. EmblemHealth includes GHI, HIP, Vytra, and ConnecticCare (in NYS Only). You must bring a referral from your Emblem primary care doctor to your first appointment. In-network participation exceptions include:

  • Emblem’s HIP Commercial Millennium, Select Care and Enhanced Care Prime networks is not in-network with Memorial Sloan Kettering.
  • Please call Emblem to confirm if your specific plan is in-network.

For information regarding Memorial Sloan Kettering’s participation with Emblem’s Medicare Advantage Plans, please refer to the Medicare & Medicaid page

Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield (Wellpoint) of New York Indemnity, HMO, EPO, PPO, POS and Medicare Advantage plans, with the following exceptions:

  • Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
  • Please call Empire BCBS to confirm if your specific plan is in-network with Memorial Sloan Kettering.

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with HealthFirst’s commercial products; these commercial products are not purchased on the insurance exchanges.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with HealthSmart’s Accel, HSPC, and HPO networks.

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

For our NJ locations, Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with most Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey plans for individuals, families, and small businesses. Horizon members with Blue Card Access (there would be a suitcase logo on the front of the card) may have access to our NY locations.  Please call Horizon to confirm if your plan is in-network in NY. 


Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Humana.

Interlink Health Services

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Interlink Health Services.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Lifetrac.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider for all MagnaCare health plans except those products you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

Medicare & Medicaid

For information about Medicare and Medicaid, please visit this page

Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS plans. Contact your insurance carrier to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Multiplan.

Multiple Insurance Plans

If you are covered by more than one insurance plan, you will want to determine your benefits from both plans. First, you need to determine which one is your primary insurance provider by contacting your employee benefits office or your insurance carriers. After you find out which is your primary insurance provider, you should then contact your insurance carrier to determine if you have access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some MVP plans. Contact your insurance carrier to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.

New York State Employee Health Insurance Plan (Empire Plan)

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider for New York State employees who have enrolled in UnitedHealthcare's Cancer Resource Services. If you have the Empire Plan, you should call Cancer Resources Services at 866-936-6002 to verify and enroll in this coverage.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is in-network with Oscar’s Circle Plus Network, a part of its Small Group Broad line that is offered only to select small business groups. Oscar does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider for any of its individual plans. Please confirm eligibility with your insurance carrier. 

Other Blue Cross Blue Shield plans

Most Blue Cross Blue Shield plans include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider. Contact your insurance company to confirm if Memorial Sloan Kettering is in-network.

Other Coverage Options

We have agreements with several insurance companies that may provide additional coverage for cancer patients. These benefit programs include:

  • AXA Assistance USA
  • Beech Street
  • Integrated Health Plans
  • National Health Administrators
  • National Preferred Provider Network
  • UnitedHealthcare's Cancer Resource Services
  • United Resource Network
  • Veterans Choice Program

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Oxford’s Freedom and Liberty plans as well as the Metro Plan (which is only offered to small business groups and no longer offered as individual plans). Please confirm with your insurance if you need a one-time referral. Note: Oxford’s Medicare Managed Care plan — Secure Horizon — does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider. Oxford does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

World Trade Center Health Program

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with the World Trade Center Health Program.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with QualCare's PPO and HMO/POS network.

Specialty Care Management

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Specialty Care Management.


Hospital and physician services may be covered by TRICARE. Please call your TRICARE plan to confirm coverage at Memorial Sloan Kettering.


Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with UnitedHealthCare's HMO, POS, and PPO plans. Please confirm with your insurance if a one-time referral is needed.

UnitedHealthCare's Medicare Managed Care plan does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider.

United does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by UnitedHealthcare.

Contact and Location

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Find a Convenient Location

Memorial Sloan Kettering has locations throughout New York City, Long Island, New Jersey, and Westchester. These locations offer many services, including screening, chemotherapy, and medical testing.

See all locations

About Me


MD, Columbia University


General Surgery - Brigham and Women's Hospital; Cardiothoracic Surgery - Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center


Thoracic Surgery - Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Board Certifications

Thoracic Surgery; General Surgery

I am a surgeon who specializes in treating cancers of the chest, including lung cancer, esophageal cancer, thymoma, thymic carcinoma, mediastinal tumors, mesothelioma, and cancer that has metastasized (spread) to the lung from other parts of the body.

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When possible, I utilize minimally invasive surgical techniques to reduce pain and speed the recovery process. I have extensive experience using video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS), which permits the removal of lung tumors through small incisions, and endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS), which provides a much less invasive method to biopsy and stage lung cancer.

When faced with a cancer diagnosis, most people have a high degree of anxiety, uncertainty, and urgency. My job is to answer all of their questions, explain everything thoroughly, and put their minds at ease. It is important to make sure patients and their families never feel rushed and come away with a clear understanding about the disease and the treatment options being considered. When I meet with patients, I want them to know that they have my full and undivided attention, feel confident in their treatment plan, and be reassured that they are in good hands.

In fact, I became interested in oncology because I wanted to contribute to the enormous progress that has been made in cancer treatment. Providing optimal care and comfort to people diagnosed with cancer is incredibly fulfilling.

My lung cancer research includes the full spectrum of disease stages, from early and pre-invasive cancer to advanced metastatic disease. I am the Principal Investigator for a multi-center, prospective trial testing active surveillance (a “watch and wait” approach) for patients with ground glass opacities, hazy gray areas that can show up in CT scans or X-rays of the lungs when the lungs are sick. I am also a co-investigator on a randomized study offering surgery to patients who have limited metastatic lung cancer and harbor an EGFR mutation. Additionally, I am an active member of an international committee of experts responsible for overseeing the staging system for lung cancer. 

I also have a special interest in the research and treatment of rare and complex tumors such as thymoma and thymic carcinoma. By examining the genetic and molecular characteristics of these tumors, we can better understand how they develop and create new targeted therapies to treat them.

To enhance the quality of our care for rare diseases, I developed and maintain a thymoma database to follow the outcomes of patients who have been treated at MSK. The treatment of these tumors requires a collaborative effort among surgeons, oncologists, and radiation oncologists, and we are fortunate here at Memorial Sloan Kettering to have a team of experts specifically focused in thymoma and thymic cancers. My colleagues and I are actively pursuing clinical trials to find more-effective therapies to treat these rare cancers.

My interest in rare diseases spans to other areas such as sarcoma. I work closely with our team of sarcoma experts in managing sarcomas in the chest and in the lungs.

I also have a strong interest in surgical education and am committed to training future leaders in thoracic surgery. The interactions we have with our fellows and students provide a continual source of renewal and enrichment. Training the next generation of physicians and surgeons is a unique privilege that will continue to advance our fight against cancer.

I am the Program Director for our Thoracic Surgery training programs and the Associate Vice Chair of Education in the Department of Surgery. I have participated in several national committees on surgical education that oversee thoracic surgery training programs in the United States and have served as an examiner for the American Board of Thoracic Surgery to certify new thoracic surgeons.

I see patients in Manhattan, as well as at our outpatient facility in Commack. As someone with long-standing family ties to Suffolk County, I have a special commitment to our Long Island community.

Awards and Honors

  • Castle Connolly: New York Magazine Top Doctors (2016, 2018-2020)


Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering work as teams, with specialists from all different areas. This allows us to consider all your needs together, and to give you the best possible care.

See all Thoracic Service doctors

Clinical Trials

Smiling doctors in the lab
Find a Clinical Trial for You

Memorial Sloan Kettering's doctors and scientists are constantly developing new treatments for cancer. MSK is typically running hundreds of clinical trials at a given time.

You may be able to participate in a clinical trial even if you are new to MSK. Search our online directory to find trial information and see more about who can participate.

Search clinical trials

Research and Publications

Selected Book Chapters

Zhao T, Huang J. Right Lower Lobe Lobectomy. In: Wang J, Ferguson M, eds. Atlas of Minimally Invasive Surgery for Lung and Esophageal Cancer. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer; 2017.

Ahmad U, Huang J. Tumors of the Thymus. In: LoCicero J, Feins R, Rocco G, Colson Y, Meyers B, eds. Shield’s General Thoracic Surgery. 8th ed. Philadelphia, USA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2018.

Articles in Journals

Yu HA, Sima CS, Huang J, Solomon SB, Rimner A, Paik P, Pietanza MC, Azzoli CG, Rizvi NA, Krug LM, Miller VA, Kris MG, Riely GJ. Local therapy with continued EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy as a treatment strategy in EGFR-mutant advanced lung cancers that have developed acquired resistance to EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors. J Thorac Oncol. 2013 Mar;8(3):346-51.

Sarkaria IS, Rizk NP, Finley DJ, Bains MS, Adusumilli PS, Huang J, Rusch VW. Combined thoracoscopic and laparoscopic robotic-assisted minimally invasive esophagectomy using a four-arm platform: experience, technique and cautions during early procedure development. Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2013 Jan 30.

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Huang J, Rizk NP, Travis WD, Riely GJ, Park BJ, Bains MS, Dycoco J, Flores RM, Downey RJ, Rusch VW.  Comparison of patterns of relapse in thymic carcinoma and thymoma. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2009 Jul;138(1):26-31. 

Huang, J., Rizk, NP., Travis, WD., Seshan, VE., Bains, MS., Dycoco, J., Downey, RJ., Flores, RM., Park, BJ., Rusch, VW. Feasibility of multimodality therapy including extended resections in Stage IVA thymoma. Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery. 134(6):1477-83, 2007 Dec.

Huang J, Ahmad U, Antonicelli A, Catlin AC, Fang W, Gomez D, Loehrer P, Lucchi M, Marom E, Nicholson A, Ruffini E, Travis W, Van Schil P, Wakelee H, Yao X, Detterbeck F; on behalf of the International Thymic Malignancy Interest Group International Database Committee and Contributors. Development of the International Thymic Malignancy Interest Group International Database: an unprecedented resource for the study of a rare group of tumors. J Thorac Oncol. 2014; 9(10)1573-8

Robinson EM, Ilonen IK, Tan KS, Plodkowski AJ, Bott M, Bains MS, Adusumilli PS, Park BJ, Rusch VW, Jones DR, Huang J. Prevalence of occult peribronchial N1 nodal metastasis in peripheral clinical N0 <2 cm NSCLC. Ann Thorac Surg. 2020 Jan;109(1):270-276.

Neal JW, Costa DB, Muzikansky A, Shrager JB, Lanuti M, Huang J, Ramachandran KJ, Rangachari D, Huberman MS, Piotrowska Z, Kris MG, Azzoli CG, Sequist LV, Chaft JE. Randomized phase II study of 3 months or 2 years of adjuvant afatinib in patients with surgically resected stage I-III EGFR-mutant non–small-cell lung cancer. JCO Precis Oncol. 2021;5:325-332.

Vimolratana M, Sarkaria IS, Goldman DA, Rizk NP, Tan KS, Bains MS, Adusumilli PS, Sihag S, Isbell JM, Huang J, Park BJ, Molena D, Rusch VW, Jones DR, Bott MJ. Two-year quality of life outcomes after robotic-assisted minimally invasive and open esophagectomy. Ann Thorac Surg. 2020.

Caso R, Jones GD, Bains MS, Hsu M, Tan KS, Feldman DR, Funt SA, Reuter VE, Bosl GJ, McHugh D, Huang J, Molena D, Amar D, Fischer G, Rusch VW, Jones DR. Outcomes after multidisciplinary management of primary mediastinal germ cell tumors. Ann Surg. 2020 Jan 21.

Zhou J, Sanchez-Vega F, Caso R, Tan KS, Brandt WS, Jones GD, Yan S, Adusumilli PS, Bott M, Huang J, Isbell JM, Sihag S, Molena D, Rusch VW, Chatila WK, Rekhtman N, Yang F, Ladanyi M, Solit DB, Berger MF, Schultz N, Jones DR. Analysis of tumor genomic pathway alterations using broad-panel next-generation sequencing in surgically resected lung adenocarcinoma. Clin Cancer Res. 2019 Dec 15;25(24):7475-7484.

Chudgar NP, Brennan MF, Munhoz RR, Bucciarelli PR, Tan KS, D’Angelo SP, Bains MS, Bott M, Huang J, Park BJ, Rusch VW, Adusumilli PS, Tap WD, Singer S, Jones DR. Pulmonary metastasectomy with therapeutic intent for soft-tissue sarcoma. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2017 Jul;154(1):319-330

Eguchi T, Bains S, Lee MC, Tan KS, Hristov B, Buitrago DH, Bains MS, Downey RJ, Huang J, Isbell JM, Park BJ, Rusch VW, Jones DR, Adusumilli PS. Impact of Increasing Age on Cause-Specific Mortality and Morbidity in Patients With Stage I Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer: A Competing Risks Analysis. J Clin Oncol. 2017 Jan 20;35(3):281-290.

Yang HX, Woo KM, Sima CS, Bains MS, Adusumilli PS, Huang J, Finley DJ, Rizk NP, Rusch VW, Jones DR, Park BJ. Long-term Survival Based on the Surgical Approach to Lobectomy For Clinical Stage I Nons mall Cell Lung Cancer: Comparison of Robotic, Video-assisted Thoracic Surgery, and Thoracotomy Lobectomy. Ann Surg. 2017 Feb;265(2):431-437.

Flores RM, Ihekweazu UN, Rizk N, Dycoco J, Bains MS, Downey RJ, Adusumilli P, Finley DJ, Huang J, Rusch VW, Sarkaria I, Park B. Patterns of recurrence and incidence of second primary tumors after lobectomy by means of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) versus thoracotomy for lung cancer. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2011;141(1):59-64.

Huang J, Detterbeck FC, Wang Z, Loehrer PJ Sr. Standard outcome measures for thymic malignancies. J Thorac Oncol. 2010;5(12):2017-23.

Fabre D, Fadel E, Mussot S, Mercier O, Petkova B, Besse B, Huang J, Dartevelle PG. Long-term outcome of pleuropneumonectomy for Masaoka stage IVa thymoma. Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2011;39(5):e133-8.

McMillan RR, Sima CS, Moraco NH, Rusch VW, Huang J. Recurrence patterns after resection of soft tissue sarcomas of the chest wall. Ann Thorac Surg. 2013;96(4):1223-1228.

Huang J, Logue AE, Ostroff JS, Park BJ, McCabe M,Jones DR, Bains MS,Rizk NP, Kris MG, Rusch VW. Improving the long-term care of lung cancer patients: development of a novel thoracic survivorship program. Ann Thorac Surg. 2014 Sep; 98(3):955-61.

Lou F, Sima CS, Rusch VW, Jones DR, Huang J. Differences in patterns of recurrence in early-stage versus locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer. Ann Thorac Surg. 2014;98(5):1755-60; discussion 1760-1.

Detterbeck FC, Stratton K, Giroux D, Asamura H, Crowley J, Falkson C, Filosso PL, Frazier AA, Giaccone G, Huang J, Kim J, Kondo K, Lucchi M, Marino M, Marom EM, Nicholson AG, Okumura M, Ruffini E, Van Schil P; Staging and Prognostic Factors Committee; Members of the Advisory Boards; Participating Institutions of the Thymic Domain. The IASLC/ITMIG Thymic Epithelial Tumors Staging Project: Proposal for an Evidence-Based Stage Classification System for the Forthcoming (8th) Edition of the TNM Classification of Malignant Tumors. J Thorac Oncol. 2014;9(9 Suppl 2):S65-72.

Rami-Porta R, Bolejack V, Giroux DJ, Chansky K, Crowley J, Asamura H, Goldstraw P; International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer Staging and Prognostic Factors Committee, Advisory Board Members and Participating Institutions. The IASLC lung cancer staging project: the new database to inform the eighth edition of the TNM classification of lung cancer. J Thorac Oncol. 2014;9(11):1618-24.



Doctors and faculty members often work with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology, and life sciences companies, and other organizations outside of MSK, to find safe and effective cancer treatments, to improve patient care, and to educate the health care community.

MSK requires doctors and faculty members to report (“disclose”) the relationships and financial interests they have with external entities. As a commitment to transparency with our community, we make that information available to the public.

James Huang discloses the following relationships and financial interests:

No disclosures meeting criteria for time period

If you’re a patient at MSK and would like more information about your doctor’s external relationships, please talk with your doctor.

The information published here is for a specific annual disclosure period. There may be differences between information on this and other public sites as a result of different reporting periods and/or the various ways relationships and financial interests are categorized by organizations that publish such data.

This page and data include information for a specific MSK annual disclosure period (January 1, 2021 through disclosure submission in spring 2022). This data reflects interests that may or may not still exist. This data is updated annually.

Learn more about MSK’s COI policies here. For questions regarding MSK’s COI-related policies and procedures, email MSK’s Compliance Office at [email protected].

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