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Dr. Tong is an accomplished clinical surgeon at Duke Health and Duke Cancer Institute in Durham, North Carolina. Her focus is on thoracic oncology and minimally invasive thoracic surgery and her clinical expertise is in lung and esophageal cancer surgery as well as surgery for the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma. She has achieved international prominence as an expert in CT screening and frequently lectures internationally on its value in the diagnosis of thoracic cancers.
Dr. Tong believes that one of the best and most important aspects of her responsibility as a surgeon is to establish a relationship with her patients and their families and to work together to help them through their illnesses.
Education and Career
Dr. Tong received her Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering (BME) and Master of Science in Engineering (MSE) degrees from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Following these accomplishments, she earned her medical degree at Duke University Medical School and then went on to complete her internship and residency in General Surgery and a research fellowship in Surgical Oncology at Johns Hopkins. She completed additional training in Cardiothoracic Surgery at Duke Health.
Upon joining the faculty at Duke Health, Dr. Tong also attained a master’s degree in Health Sciences at the Johns Hopkins School of Health. Today she is an associate professor in the tenure track of Duke Health’s Department of Surgery, Division of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, Section of General Thoracic Surgery. She also operates at the Durham VA Medical Center and serves on the Duke Institutional Review Board.
Dr. Tong is an active and engaged researcher with a wide variety of interests. She has published 150 academic articles, presented several papers at professional conferences, and authored a chapter titled “Molecular prognostication of lung cancer” in the book Principles and Practice of Lung Cancer: The Official Reference Text of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC): Fourth Edition.
Through a grant called “Difficult Conversations in Thoracic Surgery,” she is currently studying how everyone in a thoracic surgery department can improve on the core competencies of professionalism and interpersonal and communication skills. She is also deeply interested in healthcare disparities and has received grant funding for patient-centered outcomes research. Her first grant was titled “Gender Differences in Lung Cancer Patients” and she has also been awarded a grant to study the use of electronically-captured patient-reported outcomes to improve lung cancer care.
Professional Memberships and Awards
Dr. Tong is a member of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons and Women in Thoracic Surgery and was recently honored with their “Extraordinary Women in Cardiothoracic Surgery” award. She is also a member of the Association of Women Surgeons and the NCCN Lung Cancer Screening Guidelines Panel.Get Your FREE Mesothelioma Packet
Written by Terri Oppenheimer
Terri Oppenheimer has been writing about mesothelioma and asbestos topics for over ten years. She has a degree in English from the College of William and Mary. Terri’s experience as the head writer of our Mesothelioma.net news blog gives her a wealth of knowledge which she brings to all Mesothelioma.net articles she authors.
Page Edited by Patient Advocate Dave Foster
Dave has been a mesothelioma Patient Advocate for over 10 years. He consistently attends all major national and international mesothelioma meetings. In doing so, he is able to stay on top of the latest treatments, clinical trials, and research results. He also personally meets with mesothelioma patients and their families and connects them with the best medical specialists and legal representatives available.