Shirling Tsai, M.D., specializes in vascular surgery. 

Dr. Tsai holds undergraduate degrees in chemistry and physics from Harvard College, where she graduated summa cum laude. She earned her medical degree at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and completed a residency in general surgery and research fellowship in vascular biology at New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. She then received advanced training in vascular and endovascular surgery through a fellowship at the Massachusetts General Hospital. 

Board certified in general surgery and vascular surgery, Dr. Tsai joined the UT Southwestern faculty in 2012. She also serves as the Chief of Vascular Surgery at the Dallas VA Medical Center. 

Dr. Tsai conducts research on the role of lipoprotein receptors in the development of aortic aneurysms and atherosclerosis. Her work has been funded by the American Surgical Association as well as the VA North Texas Health Care Systems New Investigator Program. 

She is a member of the Dallas VA Institutional Review Board (IRB), the American College of Surgeons, the Society for Vascular Surgery, the Association for Academic Surgery, the American Heart Association, and the Association of VA Surgeons and is a reviewer for the Journal of Vascular Surgery and the Annals of Vascular Surgery.


Medical School
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (2003)
Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Science (2008), Research
New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Cornell Medical Center (2010), General Surgery
Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital (2012), Vascular Surgery

Research Interest

  • Genetics of abdominal aortic aneurysms
  • Lipoprotein Receptor signaling mechanisms in aortic aneurysm pathogenesis


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Durability of open repair of juxtarenal abdominal aortic aneurysms.
Tsai S, Conrad MF, Patel VI, Kwolek CJ, LaMuraglia GM, Brewster DC, Cambria RP J. Vasc. Surg. 2012 Jul 56 1 2-7
Anti-receptor for advanced glycation end products therapies as novel treatment for abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Zhang F, Kent KC, Yamanouchi D, Zhang Y, Kato K, Tsai S, Nowygrod R, Schmidt AM, Liu B Ann. Surg. 2009 Sep 250 3 416-23
TGF-beta through Smad3 signaling stimulates vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation and neointimal formation.
Tsai S, Hollenbeck ST, Ryer EJ, Edlin R, Yamanouchi D, Kundi R, Wang C, Liu B, Kent KC Am. J. Physiol. Heart Circ. Physiol. 2009 Aug 297 2 H540-9
Transforming growth factor-beta promotes recruitment of bone marrow cells and bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells through stimulation of MCP-1 production in vascular smooth muscle cells.
Zhang F, Tsai S, Kato K, Yamanouchi D, Wang C, Rafii S, Liu B, Kent KC J. Biol. Chem. 2009 Jun 284 26 17564-74
Upregulation of protein kinase cdelta in vascular smooth muscle cells promotes inflammation in abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Schubl S, Tsai S, Ryer EJ, Wang C, Hu J, Kent KC, Liu B J. Surg. Res. 2009 May 153 2 181-7
The role of progenitor cells in the development of intimal hyperplasia.
Tsai S, Butler J, Rafii S, Liu B, Kent KC J. Vasc. Surg. 2009 Feb 49 2 502-10