Rainer Gruessner is a highly accomplished surgeon known for his paramount contributions to the medical community. His pioneering techniques and minimally invasive surgeries have been recognized for their ability to shorten hospital duration and cost and increase quality of life. Specializing in transplantation and general surgery of the pancreas, liver, and intestines, Dr. Gruessner has given many patients another chance at life.
Dr. Gruessner was appointed Chairman of the Department of Surgery at the University of Arizona in 2007, where he also served as Chief of Transplantation and the Surgical Director of the Hepatopancreaticobiliary Program. The HPB Program focuses on the of various treatment options for terminal illnesses of the liver, pancreas, and biliary system.
As a team leader, Dr. Gruessner has made several advancements in the way medical professionals care for their patients. His pioneering technique of robot-assisted total pancreatectomy, restoration of gastro-intestinal continuity and islet auto-transplant gives hope to many patients who undergo traditional surgery for the treatment of chronic pancreatitis and who develop brittle, life-long diabetes mellitus.
Another pioneering procedure first performed by Rainer Gruessner was accomplished at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, where he preemptively transplanted the liver of a living donor to a patient suffering from oxalosis. This procedure–enabling the patient to expel calcium crystals from the body properly–brought a new perspective on how to successfully treat oxalosis without the need for a kidney transplant.
During his time in Arizona, Dr. Gruessner has contributed several ‘firsts’ to the State’s medical community. These include the first living and deceased intestinal transplants, the first multivisceral transplant, the first pediatric living donor liver transplant, and the first autologous islet transplant. The medical community has applauded each of these contributions, and the University of Arizona College of Medicine has become nationally known for many of these groundbreaking procedures.