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My pursuit of an academic career in pediatric congenital heart surgery is deeply rooted in my desire to advance the treatment of congenital heart disease and to make a difference in the lives of children and their families through compassionate patient care, innovative research and scholarship, and leadership.
Specialties & Expertise
- Pediatric Cardiac Surgeon
- Cardiothoracic Surgery
- Cardiac Surgery
- Congenital Heart Disease
- Congenital Heart Disorder
- Congenital Heart Disease In Adult
- Congenital Heart Failure
- Congenital Heart Block
- Adult Congenital Heart Disease
- Surgery, Thoracic
Clinical & Academic Positions
Adjunct Assistant Professor of Clinical Cardiothoracic Surgery
Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
Assistant Attending Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Education & Training
- M.Sc., University of Virginia, 2011
- M.D., University of Colorado School of Medicine, 2007
- B.A., University of Colorado, 2000
Honors & Awards
- 2007: CU School of Medicine Class of 1955, 56, 57 Alumni Award for Outstanding Medical Student Performance, University of Colorado School of Medicine
- 2007: George Packard Award for Outstanding Medical Student Performance in Surgery, University of Colorado School of Medicine
- 2007: Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA), University of Colorado School of Medicine
- 2008: Society of Critical Care Medicine Abstract Research Award Finalist, 37th Critical Care Congress.
- 2008: William Dion Outstanding Intern Award, University of Virginia Department of Surgery
- 2010: Fellowship in Health Evaluation Sciences Fund Academic Scholarship, University of Virginia Department of Public Health Sciences.
- 2010: Paul C. Sampson Resident Research Award Finalist, Western Thoracic Surgical Association.
- 2011: Bigger-Lehman Resident Research Award, Virginia Surgical Society.
- 2011: 14th Annual C. Walton Lillehei Resident Forum Award 2011, 91st Annual Meeting of the American Association for Thoracic Surgery.
- 2012: Andy Ford Award for Excellence in Pediatric Cardiovascular Research, University of Virginia Department of Pediatrics.
- 2012: Academic Achievement Award for Scholastic Excellence and Application of Scientific Scholarship, University of Virginia Department of Surgery.
- 2012: Curtis G. Tribble Award for Excellence in Resident Teaching, University of Virginia Department of Surgery.
- 2013: Richard E. Clark Memorial Paper Award, 49th Annual Meeting of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
- 2013: Paul C. Sampson Resident Research Award Finalist, 39th Annual Meeting of the Western Thoracic Surgical Association.
- 2014: Hugh Shepherd Warren Outstanding Chief Resident Award. University of Virginia Department of Surgery.
- 2014: 2014 Hawley H. Seiler Resident’s Award for Best Research, Southern Thoracic Surgical Association (STSA).
- 2015: 2015 TSDA Benson R. Wilcox Resident Award for Best Research, Thoracic Surgery Directors Association, 51st Annual Meeting of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
- 2016: Richard E. Clark Memorial Paper Award. 52nd Annual Meeting of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
Dr. Damien J. LaPar completed his Congenital Cardiac Surgery training at Harvard Medical School/Boston Children’s Hospital where he served as Chief Clinical Fellow. He graduated medical school at the University of Colorado, and he completed General Surgery and Adult Cardiothoracic Surgery training at the University of Virginia. He completed a two-year basic science Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at University of Virginia where he also acquired a Master of Science in Clinical Research degree from the School of Public Health Sciences.
During his training, Dr. LaPar was awarded a two-year NIH/NHLBI Cardiothoracic Surgery Trials Network (CTSN) Investigator Fellowship. His award-winning research has resulted in national and international research presentations and publications. He has also served in several national leadership roles, including the President of the Thoracic Surgery Resident’s Association (TSRA) and the Resident Director to the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) Board of Directors.
Dr. LaPar's clinical interests are in neonatal cardiac surgery, pediatric VADs, minimally-invasive pediatric cardiac surgery, and VATS (Video-assisted Thoracic Surgery) for PDA ligation and vascular ring repair. His research interests include stem-cell and myocardial regenerative therapy, as well as multi-institutional clinical research collaboratives and clinical trials.