Chief, Gynecology Service; Vice Chair for Technology Development, Department of Surgery; Avon Chair in Gynecologic Oncology
I am a board-certified gynecologic oncologist specializing in surgery for gynecologic cancers. I am also a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Weill Cornell Medical College.
I have a special interest in minimally invasive surgery (laparoscopy) for the treatment of cancerous and noncancerous diseases of the female reproductive system. My clinical expertise includes minimally invasive and general gynecologic surgery for cancers of the ovary, uterus, and cervix. For selected women who are at an increased risk of ovarian cancer, such as those with a strong family history of breast and ovarian cancer or with mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes or Lynch syndrome, we offer laparoscopic prophylactic surgery, if they desire, to reduce their risk of the disease.
I also have extensive experience in endometrial and cervical cancer and radical trachelectomy, a surgical procedure that can preserve fertility in select patients with early-stage cervical cancer; over the past ten years I have pioneered many of the surgical approaches that we use to treat stage 1 cervical cancer. I also led the effort to investigate and utilize sentinel lymph node mapping, a novel approach that is now being adopted by many oncology practices nationally and internationally, in cervical and uterine cancer. The procedure may improve detection of cancer that has spread to lymph nodes and limit the side effects of radical surgery.
My clinical research focuses on surgical therapy for gynecologic cancers and innovative surgical approaches to treating gynecologic disorders, such as sentinel node mapping, improved localization of tumors, and fertility-sparing surgery. As Chief of the Gynecology Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering, I am actively involved in the development and improvement of minimally invasive techniques and oversee our surgical research programs. It is my responsibility to ensure that quality surgical care and patient safety are maintained for all gynecologic patients at our institution. Providing this level of service is the utmost priority in my own practice.
I have served as a member of the Gynecologic Oncology Group Cervix Committee and the American College of Surgeons Committee on Emerging Surgical Technology and Education as well as the National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s Cervical Cancer Screening Panel, Endometrial Cancer and Uterine Sarcoma Panel, and Cervical Cancer Panel.
I spend two full days in the operating room each week. In addition, I see patients in the clinic twice a week at MSK’s Rockefeller Outpatient Pavilion on East 53rd Street (between Lexington and Third Avenues) in Manhattan.
- Clinical Expertise: Gynecologic Oncology; Cancers and Tumors of the Cervix, Uterus, Ovary, Vulva, and Vagina; Laparoscopic Surgery; Fertility-Sparing Surgery (Radical Trachelectomy); Prophylactic Laparoscopic Oophorectomy for High-Risk Patients
- Awards and Honors: New York Magazine Top Doctors (2002; 2005-2016)
- Languages Spoken: English; Arabic
- Education: MD, American University of Beirut
- Residencies: Greater Baltimore Medical Center
- Fellowships: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
- Board Certifications: Obstetrics and Gynecology; Gynecologic Oncology
Gynecologic Tumor Board. Dizon Don, Abu-Rustum NR. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett; 2008.
100 Questions and Answers about Ovarian Cancer. 2nd ed. Dizon Don, Abu-Rustum NR. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers; 2006.
“Innovative 21st century therapies.” Rowinsky EK, Mundt AJ, Abu-Rustum NR. In: Principles and Practice of Gynecologic Oncology. 5th ed. Barakat RR, Markman M, Randall ME, eds. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2009.
“Schauta radical vaginal hysterectomy and laparoscopic radical hysterectomy.” Sonoda Y, Abu-Rustum NR. In: Operative Gynecologic Laparoscopy and Hysteroscopy. 3rd ed. Nezhat C, Nezhat F, Nezhat C, eds. New York: Cambridge UP; 2008.
“Port site metastasis and pneumoperitoneum.” Are C, Abu-Rustum N. In: Operative Gynecologic Laparoscopy and Hysteroscopy. 3rd ed. New York: Cambridge UP; 2008.
“Cancer of the cervix.” Chi DS, Abu-Rustum NR, Plante M, Roy M. In: TeLinde’s Operative Gynecology. 10th ed. Rock JA, Jones HW, eds. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins; 2008: 1227.
“Cervical cancer.” Abu-Rustum NR. In: Surgical Oncology: An Algorithmic Approach. Saclarides TJ, Millikan KW, Godellas CV, eds. New York: Springer-Verlag; 2003: 502-513.
Easy Learning Hysterectomy. Cibula D, Querleu D, Morrow P, Tamussino K, Bader A, Leblanc E, Benedetti-Panici P, Andou M, Abu-Rustum N. European Prague: Society of Gynaecological Oncology; 2010.
As home to one of the world’s top cancer research centers, Memorial Sloan Kettering is typically involved in more than 900 clinical trials at a given time. Currently, clinical trials focused on the conditions I treat are enrolling new patients. If you’re interested in joining a clinical trial, click to learn about the trial’s purpose, eligibility criteria, and how to get more information.Learn more
Most major health insurers offer plans that include MSK as one of their in-network providers. If MSK is in-network, it means all our doctors are too. Medicaid and New York State Medicare also provide benefits for care at MSK.Learn more