Arun Sharma, MD

Associate Professor, Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery

    About me

    Areas of Expertise and Research Interests:

    • Head and neck cancer
    • Thyroid cancer
    • Transoral robotic surgery (TORS)
    • Head and neck cancer disparities
    • Quality of life and functional outcomes

    Dr. Arun Sharma is Associate Professor in the Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery. Dr. Sharma is a head and neck surgical oncologist who specializes in the treatment of head and neck cancer, skin cancer of the head and neck, thyroid and parathyroid neoplasms, and salivary gland neoplasms. He has advanced training in minimally invasive approaches to the head and neck, including transoral robotic surgery (TORS), transoral laser microsurgery (TLM) for laryngeal lesions and cancers, and minimally invasive video-assisted thyroidectomy (MIVAT).

    Dr. Sharma attended college at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. He received his medical degree and Master’s in clinical research at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. He completed his otolaryngology-head and neck surgery residency at the University of Washington in Seattle and a fellowship in advanced oncologic head and neck surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

    Dr. Sharma’s research is focused on understanding factors that affect head and neck cancer outcomes, with the eventual goal to implement interventions to improve outcomes. This include ongoing work on rural-urban disparities and quality of life in head and neck cancer.

    He is a member of the American Head & Neck Society (AHNS) and American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS). He has served on multiple committee with the AHNS and AAO-HNS.

    Watch Dr. Sharma talk about Head and Neck Cancer Care

    Watch Dr. Sharma talk about Robotic Surgery


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    Education & training

    Surgical Oncologist
    Board Certifications
    Head & Neck Oncology & Reconstructive Surgery
    Medical School
    University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA
    University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle WA
    University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA



    Sharma A. Inclusion of Neck Level IV in Treatment of Patients With Clinically Node-Negative Oral Cavity Cancer. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. In press.

    Castellano A, Sharma A. Systematic Review of Validated Quality of Life and Swallow Outcomes after Transoral Robotic Surgery. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. In press.

    Hunter BN, Cardon B, Oakley GM, Sharma A, Crosby DL. Factors Associated With Patient Nonattendance in Rhinology Clinics. Am J Rhinol Allergy. Published online January 29 2019.

    White J, Sharma A. Development and assessment of a transoral robotic surgery curriculum to train otolaryngology residents. ORL. 2018 Aug;80:69-76.

    Sharma A. In reference to combination of panendoscopy and positron emission tomography/computed tomography increases detection of unknown primary head and neck carcinoma. Laryngoscope. Published online December 14, 2018.

    Sharma A. Gene expression profiling in HPV-positive p16-positive oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma: A path to deintensification? JAMA Otolaryngology Head Neck Surg. Published online April 18, 2018.

    Schmitt NC, Kang H, Sharma A. Salivary duct carcinoma: An aggressive salivary gland malignancy with opportunities for targeted therapy. Oral Oncology. 2017 Nov;74:40-8.

    Javadi P, Sharma A, Zahnd WE, Jenkins WD. Evolving disparities in the epidemiology of oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers. Cancer Causes & Control. 2017 Jun;28(6): 635-45.

    Tieu A, Gregory S, Kamel O, Sharma A. Mediastinal Nonseminomatous Germ Cell Tumor Metastatic to the Neck. Ann Clin Otolaryngol. 2016 Dec; 1(1): 1003.

    Sharma A, Patel S, Baik FM, Mathison G, Pierce BHG, Khariwala SS, Yueh B, Schwartz SM, Méndez E. Survival and Gastrostomy Prevalence in Patients with Oropharyngeal Cancer Treated with Transoral Robotic Surgery vs Chemoradiation. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2016 Jul;142(7):691-7.

    Gilbert MR, Sharma A, Schmitt NC, Johnson JT, Ferris RL, Duvvuri U, Kim S. A 20-Year Review of 75 Cases of Salivary Duct Carcinoma. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2016 May;142(5):489-95

    Sharma A, Albergotti WG, Duvvuri U. Applications of evolving robotic technology for head and neck surgery. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 2016 Mar;125(3):207-12.

    Schmitt NC (co-first author), Sharma A (co-first author), Gilbert MR, Kim S. Early T stage salivary duct carcinoma: outcomes and implications for patient counseling. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2015 Nov;153(5):795-8.

    View Dr. Sharma’s complete publication list


    Collaborative Cancer Disparities Research Program (CCDRP), Southern Illinois University School of Medicine - Siteman Cancer Center, 9/16-8/17, “Assessing Head and Neck Cancer Awareness as a Function of Rural Residence”, Principal Investigator, $50,000.

    SIU Team Scientist Grant (TSG), Southern Illinois University School of Medicine – Simmons Cancer Institute, 7/16-7/18, “Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV)-specific humoral responses in EBV-related and -unrelated malignancies”. Co-Investigator, $99,688.00.


    SIU Division of Otolaryngology Resident Teaching Award; June, 2017

    SIU Department of Surgery Resident Teaching Award (for Faculty); October, 2016

    Medical Innovator Award, Sangamon County Medical Society; March, 2016 “Transoral Robotic Surgery for Head and Neck Cancers”

    AHNS Robert Maxwell Byers Award for Best Clinical Research Paper, July 2012