Dr. Gavin Peter Dunn is a Washington University neurosurgeon at Barnes-Jewish Hospital specializing in neuroimmunology and brain tumors.
I’m a neurosurgeon at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine. It’s a world class hospital, a wonderful neurosurgical department but studying patient’s diseases is really a big part of the DNA at Washington University and a big part of what I do here. The opportunity to do both was really unparalleled and I think is not something you can do at a lot of places.
From a technical standpoint, the actual act of doing surgery, there are a number of technological advances that we’ve seen here and actually pioneered at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Wash U. Specifically, we have an MRI that we can use actually at the time of surgery, which really helps our ability to take out difficult tumors.
Each day that goes by, we see more advances in our ability to understand what makes tumors what they are and our ability to look at every base pair in the tumor DNA and try and understand what that means and how we can use that information to treat patients better.
One thing that’s really special about practicing neurosurgery at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Wash U. is just the high caliber of the colleagues with whom I work both in my department with the other surgeons and also outside of the department but within the cancer center. We work very closely and seamlessly with medical oncologists, medical neuro oncologists, radiation oncologists, but also neuro radiologists, neuro pathologists, and also the scientists who study these brain tumors including myself and my other colleagues.
It’s a real privilege being someone’s neurosurgeon. They, patients, place a lot of trust in you when they agree to undergo surgery with you and my personal philosophy is a pretty simple one. You just have to treat patients and their families like you would want family members to be treated.