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The Division of Thoracic Surgery

Welcome to McMaster University's Division of Thoracic Surgery. Here you'll find information regarding our world-leading education, research, and patient care initiatives. Scroll down to learn more!

Thoracic Faculty

Learn more about our dynamic team of thoracic surgery ​faculty members.

Faculty Roster

Thoracic Research

We lead clinical trials, participate in national and international trials, and focus on surgical quality improvement initiatives.

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Thoracic Education

We educate learners in surgery at all levels, including medical students, residents, and clinical fellows.

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Around the Bay Road Race

​Some photos from our annual run in support of St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton!

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Yaron Shargall
  • Academic Division Head, Division of Thoracics
  • Professor, Division of Thoracic Surgery
  • Professor, Department of Surgery, McMaster University
  • Head of Service of Thoracic Surgery, St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton


It is with pleasure that I invite you to review McMaster University's Division of Thoracic Surgery website. It offers a brief history of the division and outline of our clinical programs.

The Division of Thoracic Surgery at McMaster University has grown to consist of 4 full-time geographic faculty members. Located at St. Joseph’s Healthcare, the division provides Hamilton and surrounding communities with specialty care for diseases of the lung, esophagus and mediastinum. Clinical growth within the Division has been substantial over that past decade and is expected to continue as population demographics change in favour of the elderly, the incidences of lung cancer increase and cancer care begins to require more sophisticated multimodality care. Thoracic surgical volumes are expected to increase creating unique challenges and opportunities for the Division.

In addition to providing innovative clinical services, the division is acclaimed as one of 8 centres in Canada (and 9 in the USA) qualified to train thoracic surgeons to practice Thoracic Surgery in Canada. Over the past decade, the reputation of the Division has grown substantively as a centre for clinical excellence, research and education. The participation of members of the Division in several high-profile, international research studies in emphysema, asthma and lung cancer has attracted the attention of professional colleagues as well as the local and national news media and has sparked the interest of the community in its work.

The Division continues to enjoy close relationships with other groups and institutions both within and outside the hospital, including the Firestone Institute for Respiratory Health (FIRH), Juravinski Cancer Centre, Father Sean O’Sullivan Research Centre (FSORC), and the Ontario Cancer Treatment and Research Foundation.​

Clinical service

Our clinical program serves southwest Ontario an area with a population of 1.8 million. The thoracic division is a regional program situated at St Joseph's Healthcare — Hamilton campus. At full capacity we are four active thoracic surgeons. More than 700 major thoracic cases and 900 endoscopies are performed each year. St. Joseph's is one of the largest single institutions practicing tertiary thoracic surgery in the country. The program is supported by high quality chest radiology and chest pathology. We enjoy a strong relationship with our respirology colleagues at the Firestone Institute.


The division is productive academically and holds several hundred thousand dollars in both peer review and industry research funding, and is involved in research for both benign and malignant thoracic disease. Our division has played a central role in the Canadian lung reduction surgery trial as well as the development bronchial thermoplasty for asthma. Our current research interests focus around: surgical reporting, information collection, quality improvement, perioperative complications and resident education. We are a member of several inter-group studies and continue to contribute to these trials.


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