Feature Surgeon: Dr. Stephanie Fuller

Stephanie Fuller, MD, MS

“Upon first meeting us, patients are thrust into a world of chaos, anxiety and fear.  Taking care of the whole patient and making them feel as comfortable as possible given what they are going through is as much a part of the job as performing  the procedures with excellent technical results.   It gives me great satisfaction knowing that I operate for two reasons: to give someone a better quality of life or a longer life.  It is truly a privilege to do this for a living.

Yes, the career involves a lot of sacrifices, emotional rollercoasters and dedication but the rewards are immense.  As an academic surgeon, it’s an honor to positively influence, inspire and help build future cardiothoracic surgeons.  I’ve been fortunate to have great mentors and opportunities.  For this I am forever grateful and really hope to give back to the next generation.

And of course this would be impossible without the love and support of my family and friends.  Lucky to have their never-ending encouragement and patience!  Do what you love and love what you do!”

Dr. Stephanie Fuller is an Associate Professor of Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine.  She is also the Surgical Director of the Philadelphia Adult Congenital Heart Center and the Program Director for the Congenital Cardiothoracic Surgery Training Program at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.  She is a fascinating woman boht in and out of the OR.  She expresses a commitment to rhino conservation, which is one of her passions, and considers riding horses to be her lifeline.  She was nominated by Dr. Lauren Kane, who states the following:

“Dr. Stephanie Fuller is an accomplished congenital heart surgeon and associate professor in the division of cardiothoracic surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and triple board certified. She is a genuine, unpretentious and wonderful human being. She treats the full spectrum of congenital heart disease from the neonates the day they are born to the survivors of congenital heart defects who have needs into adulthood. She is well published and has given talks and lectures around the world. Her contributions to our understanding of neurodevelopment outcomes in complex congenital heart surgery are invaluable. She is active nationally in our societies and a powerful contributor to the field of cardiothoracic surgery. She is sought out as a mentor to many young doctors and students. I am grateful to have her both as a friend and colleague.”

Dr. Fuller riding a horse

Dr Fuller dehorning a rhino in South Africa

Dr. Fuller operating