Dr. Tseng is a surgical oncologist at Keck Medicine of USC, who specializes in soft tissue sarcoma. He is part of the multidisciplinary USC Sarcoma program.
Here’s what you won’t find on his resume.
Exploring the ocean’s mysteries would also be a dream job.
“If I could trade careers with anyone, it would be with a marine biologist who specializes in jellyfish, octopus or squid. In addition to studying beautiful and fascinating creatures, this career, as I envision it, would involve traveling the world and diving the oceans too.”
Untitled works of art fascinate him.
“People are surprised to learn that I really enjoy modern and contemporary art. My favorite artist is Alberto Giacometti. His thin, emaciated, but determined, human figures somehow appeal to me. I also enjoy trying to find deeper meaning behind modern art. Untitled pieces are often the most interesting to me!”
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His favorite travel destinations are surrounded by water.
“My favorite travel destinations are Japan, Italy and the non-touristy parts of Hawaii, but there are many other places in the world I have yet to visit!”
He’s fully embraced the best advice he’s ever received.
“I remember when I was told, ‘Find something specific you are truly passionate about, make it your career and strive to become the best you can be in this focused area.’ For me, this has meant becoming a ‘student of sarcoma’ (as a close mentor once described).”
Helping his patients through each step of the journey is what fuels him.
“The most rewarding part of my job is when I’m guiding a sarcoma patient from the anxiety of a new diagnosis, through a challenging surgery and then to recovery, and being able to tell them there is no evidence of disease on follow-up scans several months later.”
Personalized treatment is an important goal.
“Each sarcoma case is different and challenges me to analyze many factors in order to develop an optimal treatment strategy. It isn’t always simply just cutting out a mass; the extent of surgery, timing and incorporation of other therapies are different for every patient.”
Here’s Dr. Tseng’s best advice for incoming medical students.
“Never lose sight of the patient. Each patient is a person who has placed their trust in you, and their care comes above all else.”
Honesty and understanding drive his philosophy of care.
“I would describe my bedside manner as personable, down-to-earth, calm, thorough and truthful. I often find myself describing sarcoma and treatment, with analogies from everyday life (a building with many tenants, for example) that seem to really help patients better understand their situation.”
A team that is constantly striving for excellence is why he calls Keck Medicine his home.
“Practicing at an academic medical center is a unique and inspiring combination of dedication to patient care, multidisciplinary collaboration, research and teaching. There is rarely routine, which is why I like it.
My favorite part of Keck Medicine is working with the dedicated people who strive for excellence in their job, whether it’s in the cafeteria, operating room or tumor board.”
Dr. Tseng is a surgical oncologist at Keck Medicine and an associate professor of clinical surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. Click here to view his full biography or request an appointment.