Pleurectomy and Decortication
Extrapleural Pneumonectomy
Thoracic Surgery

Get to Know Dr. Kemp Kernstine

Dr. Kemp Kernstine is a professor at UT Southwestern University and division chair of Thoracic Surgery, leading research efforts to improve the treatment of mesothelioma and other lung and esophageal malignancies.

He has extensive experience in pleurectomy and decortication and extrapleural pneumonectomy, the two most aggressive surgeries used with pleural mesothelioma.

Although Kernstine oversees the surgical management of the disease, he believes that future progress will involve major advances in the laboratory, where effective immunotherapy drug combinations are developing.

He worked previously at the University of Iowa hospitals and clinics and at the City of Hope National Medical Center in California.

Kernstine has done extensive work with robotic and other minimally invasive surgeries. He has been credited with performing several firsts in robotic chest surgery, including the world’s first robotic oncologic esophagectomy.

Robotic surgery allows patients to recover quicker and with less pain than with conventional surgeries. Although it has yet to significantly impact mesothelioma surgeries, it has advanced the treatment of other thoracic cancers.

Specialties of Dr. Kemp Kernstine

  • Pleural mesothelioma
  • Lung cancer
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Tracheal and bronchial tumors
  • Pericardial cancer
  • Robotic surgery

Dr. Kemp Kernstine’s Experience and Medical Education

  • UT Southwestern Medical Center
  • City of Hope National Medical Center
  • University of Iowa Hospital
  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School (Residency)
  • University of Minnesota (Fellowship)
  • Duke University Medical School (M.D.)

Awards and Certifications

  • Robert Tucker Hayes Foundation Distinguished Chair
  • Castle Connolly America’s Top Doctors
  • Castle Connolly America’s Top Doctors for Cancer
  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital Thoracic Alumnus of the Year
  • Willem J. Kolff Young Investigators Award
  • Board Certified in Thoracic Surgery

Publications of Dr. Kemp Kernstine

  • Lehenbauer, D. and Kernstine, K. (2014, May 24). Robotic esophagectomy: modified McKeown approach. Thoracic Surgery Clinics.
  • Downey, R. et al. (2007, November). Video-Assisted Thoracic Surgery for Lung Cancer Resection: A Consensus Statement of the International Society of Minimally Invasive Cardiothoracic Surgery (ISMICS) 2007. Innovations.
  • Kernstine, K. et al. (2002, February). Can FDG-PET reduce the need for mediastinoscopy in potentially resectable nonsmall cell lung cancer? Annals of Thoracic Surgery.