Samir Khariwala

Department Chair


The diagnosis of a tumor in the head and neck is daunting for any patient given the possible implications for appearance, speech, and general quality of life. My goal is to establish a foundation of trust and understanding such that my patients fully understand the nature of their disease, the treatment options available, and expected outcomes. I am committed to treating my patients with a combination of well-established therapies and new technology to optimize cure of the disease and quality of life. In addition, microvascular reconstructive techniques are used when appropriate to achieve the goals of optimizing function and form.

Research Summary

I spend my clinical time treating patients with benign and malignant disease of the head neck. Given that this disease is strongly associated with tobacco use, I have become interested in the tobacco-related carcinogenesis and the risk of oral cancer. Specifically, I am driven to produce new and clinically applicable knowledge about the carcinogenic events that lead to oral carcinoma. Many of our patients have a history of smoking, but the factors that cause some smokers to develop carcinoma while others do not are poorly studied. This gap in knowledge led me to study tobacco related carcinogenesis in oral/head and neck cancer. We seek to better understand the specific carcinogens most important in the genesis of oral cancer. This research is expected to not only significantly increase understanding of tobacco-related carcinogenesis, but also aid in risk assessment for oral cancer as well as tobacco regulation efforts.


  • Jain V, Garg A, Parascandola M, Chaturvedi P, Khariwala SS, Stepanov I. Analysis of alkaloids in areca nut-containing products by liquid chromatography-tandem mass-spectrometry. J Agric Food Chem. 2017, DOI: 10.1021/acs.jafc.6b05140
  • Wirtz N, Khariwala SS. Should more conservative blood transfusion thresholds be adopted in head and neck surgery? Laryngoscope. 2017, 2017 Mar 14. doi: 10.1002/lary.26560
  • Jethwa AR, Khariwala SS. What is the Preferred Perioperative Antibiotic Choice and Duration of Use Following Major Head and Neck Surgery? Laryngoscope. 2017 May;127(5):1009-1010. doi: 10.1002/lary.26427. Epub 2016 Nov 29
  • Khariwala SS. Evidence-Based Perioperative Treatment After Free Tissue Reconstruction: Moving From Alchemy to Data.JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2016 doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2016.3117
  • Ma B, Ruszczak C, Jain V, Khariwala SS, Lindgren B, Hatsukami DK,Stepanov I. Optimized Liquid Chromatography Nanoelectrospray-High Resolution Tandem Mass Spectrometry Method for the Analysis of 4-Hydroxy-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone-Releasing DNA Adducts in Human Oral Cells.Chem Res Toxicol. 2016 Nov 21;29(11):1849-1856. Epub 2016 Oct 12 .[Epub ahead of print].
  • Sharma A, Patel S, Baik FM, Mathison G, Pierce BHG, Khariwala SS, Yueh B, Schwartz SM, Mendez E. Survival and gastrostomy prevalence in patients with oropharyngeal cancer treated with transoral robotic surgery vs chemoradiotherapy. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2016 doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2016.1106
  • Khariwala SS, Garg A, Stepanov I, Gupta PC, Ahluwalia JS, Gota V, Chaturvedi P. Point-of-sale tobacco advertising remains prominent in Mumbai, India. Tob Regul Sci. 2016 Jul;2(3):230-238. doi: 10.18001/TRS.2.3.3
  • Balbo S, Juanes RC, Khariwala S, Baker EJ, Daunais JB, Grant KA. Increased levels of the acetaldehyde-derived DNA adduct N2-ethyldeoxyguanosine in oral mucosa DNA from Rhesus monkeys exposed to alcohol. Mutagenesis. 2016 Sep;31(5):553-8. doi: 10.1093/mutage/gew016. Epub 2016 Apr 7
  • Khariwala SS, Alexander S, Yueh B. Creation and Validation of a Structured Training Program to Train ICU Nurses in Free Flap Monitoring. J Reconst Microsurg Open. 2016 DOI: 10.1055/s-0035-1570534

Clinical Summary


Cancer of the oral cavity, oropharynx, larynx, and hypopharynx

Thyroid disease and cancer

Salivary gland disease and cancer

Skin cancer and melanoma

Benign tumors of the head and neck

Microvascular reconstruction in the head and neck


University of Minnesota Medical Center

Board Certifications





Philips Wangensteen Building 8-240
516 Delaware St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55025

Administrative Contact

Shane Gullikson