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New Pediatric Surgeon Brings Her Passion to the Children’s Cancer Hospital

CCH Newsletter - Fall 2010

Mary Austin, M.D., brings her passion for pediatric surgery to the Children’s Cancer Hospital where she is a new assistant professor in surgical oncology and pediatrics. Austin will team up with two pediatric oncologists to support one of the largest childhood melanoma programs in the country.

The Duke University graduate earned her medical degree at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn., where she remained to complete her surgery residency. During this time she also received a master’s degree in public health from the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

Austin then moved to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles to complete her pediatric surgery and surgical critical care training. She is board certified in surgery and surgical critical care and board eligible in pediatric surgery.

“My position in the Children’s Cancer Hospital is a perfect fit for me,” Austin says, “because I believe that children should be taken care of by people who are trained to take care of children. I also enjoy the added bonus of the translational care that comes from the adult side of MD Anderson.”

When asked what led her to pursue pediatric oncology, Austin credits relationships, both with her mentors in Los Angeles and the patients she treated. Austin explains that she appreciates the relationships formed with patients and their families and finds it both fascinating and humbling to meet patients at diagnosis and work with them throughout their cancer journey. “It’s a unique and special opportunity,” she says. “I love this part of medicine.”

Austin is enjoying the southern hospitality of Houston that she remembers from growing up in Kentucky. Even though the triathlete misses the California hills for cycling, newlywed Austin plans to continue her hobby of competitive triathlons with her husband and considers Texas a great place to get back into another favorite pastime, horseback riding.

© 2015 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center