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James Chang

Academic Appointments

  • Professor of Surgery (Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery) at the PAVAHCS and, by courtesy, of Orthopaedic Surgery

Contact Information

  • Clinical Offices
    Hand and Upper Extremity - North Campus 450 Broadway St Pavilion A 2nd Fl MC 6120 Redwood City, CA 94063
    Tel Work (650) 723-5256 Fax (650) 721-3422
    Pediatric Hand and Upper Extremity Clinic 730 Welch Rd 1st Fl MC 5890 Palo Alto, CA 94304
    Tel Work (650) 723-4818 Fax (650) 497-8891
  • Academic Offices
    Personal Information
    Email Tel (650) 723-5824
    Alternate Contact
    Crystal Bardelmeier Administrative Assistant Tel Work 650-725-7181
    Not for medical emergencies or patient use

Professional Overview


Dr. James Chang is currently Professor and Chief of the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Stanford University. Dr. Chang graduated from Stanford University with a Bachelor of Arts and Sciences with joint degrees in Biology and Economics. He spent a year as a lecturer in English at the Beijing University of Science and Technology in Beijing, People’s Republic of China. Following this, he graduated from Yale Medical School with Alpha Omega Alpha and Cum Laude honors. From 1991 to 1993, he was a Sarnoff Laboratory Research Fellow at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. He then completed a residency in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Stanford University Medical Center. Dr. Chang was a Clinical Instructor in Orthopedic Surgery and the Hand & Microsurgery Fellow at U.C.L.A. Medical Center from 1999-2000. He is currently Professor of Plastic Surgery and Orthopedic Surgery at Stanford University Medical Center. He is also an Attending Surgeon at Lucile Salter Packard Children's Hospital and the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, where he serves as Director of the Plastic and Hand Surgery Laboratory.

His basic science research interests include modulation of Transforming Growth Factor-Beta in scarless flexor tendon wound healing and tissue engineered flexor tendon grafts for hand reconstruction. He has expertise in molecular biology and tissue engineering techniques and their applications to plastic and hand surgery research. Dr. Chang is the recipient of numerous grants including two recent multi-year Federal Merit Review Awards on “Tissue Engineered Flexor Tendon Grafts for Extremity Reconstruction” and “Optimization of Bioengineered Tendons Using Bioreactors and Stem Cells”.

Dr. Chang is the past Editor-in-Chief of the Yearbook of Hand Surgery and an Associate Editor for the journals, Journal of Hand Surgery, Annals of Plastic Surgery, Hand, and Microsurgery. He was the Royal College of Surgeons Foundation traveling fellow and was awarded the 2006 Sterling Bunnell Traveling Fellowship by the American Society for Surgery of the Hand. He was Research Director for the American Society for Surgery of the Hand (ASSH) and managed the grant portfolio and programs of this national organization. He is currently Treasurer for the ASSH. Dr. Chang is a member of the Plastic Surgery Residency Review Committee of the ACGME and the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He was elected to the American Surgical Association in 2010.

Dr. Chang's main surgical interests are in reconstructive surgery of the hand and extremities including microsurgical reconstruction. He also has interest in pediatric hand and microsurgery, post-oncologic head and neck reconstruction, and lower extremity reconstruction.

Clinical Focus

  • Hand and Upper Extremity Surgery
  • Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
  • Pediatric Hand Problems
  • Peripheral Nerve Injuries
  • Facial Nerve Injuries
  • Plastic Surgery
View All 21clinical focus of James Chang

Academic Appointments

Administrative Appointments

  • Chief, Division of Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery (2006 - present)
  • Undergraduate Advisor, Stanford University (2004 - present)
  • Treasurer, American Society for Surgery of the Hand (2011 - 2014)
  • Board Member, American Board of Plastic Surgery (2010 - present)
  • Plastic Surgery Residency Review Committee Member, Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (2010 - present)
  • Program Director, Plastic Surgery, Stanford University Medical Center (1999 - 2008)
View All 13administrative appointments of James Chang

Honors and Awards

  • Andrew J. Weiland Medal for Research Achievement, American Society for Surgery of the Hand (2011)
  • Stanford University Asian-American Faculty Award, Stanford University (2011)
  • Sterling Bunnell Traveling Fellow, American Society for Surgery of the Hand (2006-07)
  • Royal College of Surgeons Foundation Traveling Lectureship, Royal College of Surgeons (2003)
  • Leslie M. Hovey Teacher of the Year Award, Stanford Plastic Surgery (2003)
  • Scholarship Essay Award – First Place, Plastic Surgery Educational Foundation (1999)

Professional Education

Medical Education: Yale University School of Medicine CT (1993)
Residency: Stanford University School of Medicine CA (1998)
Internship: Stanford University School of Medicine CA (1994)
Fellowship: UCLA Medical Center CA (2000)
Board Certification: Plastic Surgery, American Board of Plastic Surgery (1999)
Board Certification: Surgery of the Hand, American Board of Plastic Surgery (2002)
View All 8

Community and International Work



Prior Year Coursescourses of James Chang

Postdoctoral Advisees

Grace JohnsonRory McGoldrick

Scientific Focus

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

My role in research is to apply novel advances in tissue engineering and microsurgery to the clinical problems of hand trauma, peripheral nerve injuries, and congenital hand problems. I am interested in developing new tissues and techniques that will allow optimal reconstruction of form and function to those patients requiring reconstructive surgery.


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Publication Topics

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