Andrea A. Hayes Dixon, MD, FACS, FAAP
The Peaks and Pitfalls of Cytoreductive Surgery and Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy in Pediatric and Adolescent Patients
Dr. Andrea Hayes Dixon FACS is the Professor and Chair of Surgery at Howard University School of Medicine. She is also the Associate Director of the Cancer Center at Howard. In October of 2022, she was appointed to the position of Dean of Howard University’s College of Medicine and Vice President of Clinical Affairs. Dr. Hayes Dixon has a basic science laboratory which focuses on rare sarcomas and she also maintains clinical research efforts. She specializes in refractory and resistant tumors in children and specifically soft tissue sarcomas in children. Her patient's request her services from around the world because she was the first to do hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy, HIPEC, and cytoreductive surgery in a child. She was previously the Section Chief of Pediatric Surgery at UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, and the Surgeon in Chief of the University of North Carolina Children’s hospital and Division Chief at UNC.
Dr. Hayes Dixon was born in Los Angeles California and moved to Dartmouth College to pursue her secondary education. She continued her education at Dartmouth medical school. She then moved back to California to complete her residency program at the University of California Davis East Bay, under the tutelage of Dr. Claude Organ Jr. MD. She completed a molecular biology fellowship at the University of California San Francisco under the direction of Drs. Michael German and Douglas Hanahan. She then went on to complete a pediatric surgical oncology fellowship at the St. Jude's children's research Hospital in Memphis Tennessee. Dr. Hayes Dixon continued her academic proceeds by completing a pediatric surgery fellowship at the acclaimed Toronto Hospital for Sick Children. She also completed a special fellowship in melanoma and sarcoma at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.
After she was recruited back to M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, she began her academic pursuits after being awarded a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as a Harold Amos Scholar. This allowed her to fund her research and Ewing's sarcoma lung metastasis and angiogenesis. She developed the first orthotopic xenograft model of metastatic Ewing's sarcoma. She simultaneously conducted clinical research and completed the first cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy HIPEC, for children with sarcomatosis. She completed a phase I trial and established the safe dose of chemotherapy to be delivered in HIPEC.
She has continued to impact the field of sarcoma and sarcomatosis by amassing the largest number of desmoplastic small round cell tumor DSRCT, patients at any one hospital and by any one surgeon. DSRCT is a rare disease for which she has improved a survival from 30% to 60% based on complete removal of 100s of intra-abdominal tumor implants and HIPEC. She continues to receive philanthropic funding for her unique research.
Dr. Hayes Dixon has served on the Executive Committee of the Children's Oncology Group Sarcoma Committee for the past 18 years, this position is shared by only two other pediatric surgeons in the country. She has earned membership into the American Surgical Association and has served as Chair of the Cancer Committee for the American Pediatric Surgical Association. She has also been selected to the Pediatric Disease Query PDQ, a national committee that vets every publication on pediatric cancer and summarizes it on the National Institute of Health website. She has also served as the Past President for the Society of Black Academic Surgeons and is a Regent of the American College of Surgeons. Dr. Hayes Dixon was appointed by President Trump to the National Cancer Advisory Board. The National Cancer Advisory Board reports to the Director of the National Cancer Institute and the Secretary of Health.
Dr. Hayes Dixon has published over 160 manuscripts and dozens of book chapters. Most recently published is the “Multi-site desmoplastic small round cell tumors are genetically related and immune-cold” by Wu CC, Beird HC, Lamhamedi-Cherradi SE, Soeung M, Ingram D, Truong DD, Porter RW, Krishnan S, Little L, Gumbs C, Zhang J, Titus M, Genovese G, Ludwig JA, Lazar AJ, Hayes-Jordan A, Futreal PA, NPJ Precis Oncol. 2022 Apr 4;6(1):21. doi: 10.1038/s41698-022-00257-9. PMID: 35379887.
She plans to continue her scientific research in a translational laboratory at Howard University. Dr. Hayes Dixon truly enjoys mentoring faculty and residents, and cherishes that activity.
Dr. Hayes Dixon is the first African American female pediatric surgeon in the United States of America. She is nationally and internationally known for her work pioneering the HIPEC operation for children. She has been featured on local TV and printed news on many occasions including being recognized in the 'Houston Woman' magazine. She continues to be active and involved in mentorship for young surgeons interested in an academic career. She is married and has one daughter, Jenelle (27) and one son, Jonah (26). She enjoys participating in church activities such as medical mission trips and supporting her United Methodist Church orphanage in Kenya.