Joel M. Baumgartner, MD, is a surgical oncologist with expertise in treating cancers of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. He treats tumors that have metastasized to the abdomen, using treatment known as the “chemo bath”” or hyperthermic (heated) intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC). This treatment involves surgical resection of all tumors followed by circulation of heated chemotherapy throughout the abdomen. This technique avoids many of the toxicities associated with systemic chemotherapy, while exposing the abdomen to higher concentrations of chemotherapy.
Dr. Baumgartner also treats melanoma and performs wide local excision of these tumors, sentinel lymph node biopsies and lymph node dissections.
As an assistant professor in the Department of Surgery, Dr. Baumgartner instructs medical students, residents and fellows at UC San Diego School of Medicine. His research interests are in clinical trials, HIPEC, melanoma and immunotherapy.
Dr. Baumgartner completed a surgical oncology fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine with a focus on clinical research, which included additional training in the development and conduct of clinical trials. He completed a residency at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. He earned his medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine in Bloomington, Ind. Dr. Baumgartner is board-certified in general surgery.