SUNY Downstate Medical Center Appoints New Chief of Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Sep 3, 2014

Dr. Shivakumar Vignesh is an Expert in Advanced Endoscopic Procedures and Endoscopic Oncology

Brooklyn, NY – SUNY Downstate Medical Center has appointed Shivakumar Vignesh, MD, as associate professor and chief, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and program director of the Gastroenterology Fellowship.

Dr. Vignesh is a superbly trained interventional gastroenterologist with expertise in advanced endoscopic procedures and endoscopic oncology. He is an expert in endoscopic ultrasound; pancreatic-biliary endoscopy; endoscopic ablation; and resection techniques for precancerous abnormalities of the GI tract, including early esophago-gastric cancer and large colorectal adenomas. Dr.Vignesh is also experienced in conducting clinical trials to evaluate novel endoscopic devices and diagnostic biomarkers, as well as in developing innovative GI curriculums for students, residents, and fellows. While at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, Dr. Vignesh directed a unique Advanced Endoscopic Oncology fellowship and designed a rigorous curriculum that offered training in advanced endoscopic procedures focusing on gastrointestinal cancers.

"Dr. Vignesh is a strong addition to SUNY Downstate's Department of Medicine and its very capable GI team," said Moro Salifu, MD, professor and chair of medicine. "He brings invaluable experience and is an important and strategic addition to the medical school. Dr. Vignesh will play the lead role in expanding the clinical and academic missions in gastroenterology at Downstate."

Immediately prior to coming to SUNY Downstate, Dr. Vignesh directed the Advanced Endoscopic Oncology Fellowship at Moffitt, and was a tenured associate professor of Oncologic Sciences and Internal Medicine at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, where he served as site director of the USF Gastroenterology fellowship. Before that, he served as a faculty member in the division of gastroenterology at Yale for three years, where he was actively involved in medical student and fellowship education. Subsequently, Dr. Vignesh served as the director of endoscopic ultrasound, therapeutic endoscopy at M.S. Hershey Medical Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Vignesh graduated with distinction from Madras Medical College and University in Chennai, India. He completed his Internal Medicine residency at the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital/UMDNJ in New Brunswick, New Jersey. His specialty training includes a fellowship in Gastroenterology and Hepatology at Albert Einstein Medical Center/Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, and a fellowship that focused on ERCP and interventional endoscopy at Yale University School of Medicine.

He completed an advanced fellowship in endoscopic ultrasound at the Medical University of South Carolina, training under the pioneers of therapeutic endoscopy, Drs. Peter Cotton and Robert Hawes. He also underwent hands-on training in endoscopic submucosal dissection at Tokyo National Cancer Hospital and Keio University Hospital under the “Masters of Endoscopy,” Drs. Saito and Yahagi.

He has presented widely at Grand Rounds and as an invited speaker at national and international symposia. Dr. Vignesh is an ad hoc reviewer for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, American Journal of Gastroenterology, and PLOS ONE, and has published articles focusing on advanced endoscopy and early diagnosis of esophageal and pancreatic cancer.


About SUNY Downstate Medical Center

SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, College of Nursing, School of Health Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and a multifaceted biotechnology initiative including the Downstate Biotechnology Incubator and BioBAT for early-stage and more mature companies, respectively.

SUNY Downstate ranks twelfth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools. More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school.