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Professor Wendy Brown MBBS(hons) PhD FRACS FACS

Head, Monash University Department of Surgery

Director, Oesophago-Gastric-Bariatric Unit The Alfred

Clinical Lead, Bariatric Surgery Registry

Professor Wendy Brown was the first woman to be appointed Chair of the Monash University Department of Surgery in 2015 and in 2018 she was appointed Director of the Oesophago-Gastric-Bariatric Unit at The Alfred. In 2020, Professor Brown was appointed Program Director of Surgical Services at Alfred Health.  In addition to these roles, Professor Brown is also the Clinical Director of the Australia and New Zealand Bariatric Surgery Registry and Clinical Lead of the Victorian Upper GI Cancer Registry. 

Professor Brown’s areas of clinical expertise include bariatric and upper gastrointestinal surgery, including cancer and reflux disease.  Her research aims to support her clinical work and addresses the processes underlying weight loss, the benefits of weight loss and improving patient outcomes from Upper GI and Bariatric Surgery.  She has published her work in leading medical specialty and surgical specialty journals and regularly presents at national and international conferences.

Professor Brown led the development of the Bi-national Bariatric Surgery Registry obtaining funding for the pilot and roll out.  The aim of the Registry is to capture all bariatric procedures across Australia and New Zealand and track the outcomes (weight, diabetes status and need for re-operation) longitudinally for 10 years. 

Professor Brown serves the broader medical community in a wide variety of roles.  She is currently a member of the Victorian Perioperative Consultative Council and chairs the Surgical Subcommittee.  She is a member of the Medicare Review Advisory Committee.  She is a member on Safer Care Victoria Expert Working Groups for Hospital Peri-operative Capacity Frameworks.  She was the only bariatric surgeon on the working group developing international guidelines for Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (endorsed by NHMRC 2011, 2023) as well as the NHMRC Obesity Management Guidelines being developed in 2023.  She is the only Australian Bariatric Surgeon on the Lancet Commissioners Report on Obesity (2022-2023). 

She is past-president of the Australia & New Zealand Gastro Oesophageal Surgery Association and Obesity Surgery Society of Australia and New Zealand. She is a previous senior examiner in the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) Court of General Surgery Examiners and was the Scientific Convener at the 2020-2021 RACS Scientific Congress. She is the Chair of the Global Registry Committee and was the Scientific Chair of the International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity and Metabolic Disorders.  She has been a chair and team member of several Australian Medical Council assessment teams for undergraduate programs and was a member of the RACS board in Surgical Research.  She has previously been a member of the Victorian State Ministerial Cancer Taskforce (2003-2004) and Bariatric working party (2008), Victorian Surgical Consultative Council (2011-2016) as well as the Tasmanian Department of Health working party on Bariatric Surgery (2009-2010).  She chaired the Safer Care Victoria Expert Working Group on Bariatric Surgery (2022). 

Research interests

Professor Brown's obesity program focuses on understanding the disease of obesity, the impact of obesity on health as well as the benefits of weight loss. She also strives to understand the underlying physiology of bariatric procedures as well as the pathophysiology. She has a strong network of collaborators who enhance her program. In addition to her obesity program, Professor Brown leads a program focused on improving outcomes following esophagectomy for cancer.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Monash University

… → 2001

External positions

Programme Director, Surgical Services, Alfred Health

Professor and Chair, Monash University Department of Surgery, Alfred Health

Clinical Director and Deputy Chair, Bariatric Surgery Registry

Clinical Lead, Victorian Upper GI Cancer Registry

Director, Centre for Obesity Research and Education

Director, Oesophago-Gastric Bariatric Unit, Alfred Health

Private Practice Consulting, 517 St Kilda Road

Private Practice Operations, The Venue Hospital Windsor

Research area keywords

  • Bariatric Surgery
  • Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding
  • Laparoscopy
  • Obesity and health
  • Obesity treatments
  • Surgery
  • Surgical research

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or