photo of Bill Putnam, MD, FACS, Thoracic Surgeon

Bill Putnam, MD, FACS

Thoracic Surgeon

4.9 out of 5 stars 4.9 (393)

Areas of Expertise Include:

  • Lung Cancer and Pulmonary Tumors
  • Esophageal Cancer
  • Mediastinal Tumors
  • Pulmonary Metastases
  • Chest Wall Tumors
  • Benign Lung Diseases

Joe B. Putnam, Jr., MD, FACS, (“Bill”) has over three decades of experience in the surgical management of thoracic diseases. He has a specific focus in lung cancer and esophageal cancer diagnosis and treatment, advanced thoracic neoplasms, reoperative thoracic and esophageal surgery, and multidisciplinary management (surgery, systemic therapy such as chemotherapy and immunotherapy, and radiation therapy). Dr. Putnam was Professor of Surgery at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center for over 15 years, and Professor and Chairman of the Department of Thoracic Surgery at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center for 12 years. His research activities have included multiple clinical trials in thoracic oncology, improving quality outcomes, advancing thoracic surgery education, and evaluating novel therapies for thoracic diseases. His areas of expertise include:

About Me

My goal for every patient is to create the best environment possible for them to receive the personal care needed for diagnosis and treatment, and then to resume a normal life. A cancer diagnosis does not create good options for anyone; however, I do talk closely with the patient and family to determine the treatment option that makes the most sense for them. Sometimes, that treatment requires other specialists or treatment before surgery, and I ask myself “the Mom question.”

“Is this the care that I would wish for my Mom or my family?” And, if it is excellent enough for my Mom and my family, I can be confident that it is the best recommendation for each of my patients. I consider patient care a great privilege, and I am grateful for their confidence in me and my team.


  • Medical Director, Baptist MD Anderson Cancer Center


  • Thoracic Surgery


  • Residency

    University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, MI

    1986 - 1988

  • Doctor of Medicine - Medical School

    University of North Carolina Chapel Hill - Chapel Hill, NC

    1975 - 1979

  • Residency

    University of Rochester - Undergraduate - Rochester, NY

    1984 - 1986

  • Fellowship

    The National Cancer Institute/National Institutes of Health - Bethesda, MD

    1981 - 1984

  • Internship

    Johns Hopkins Hospital - Baltimore, MD

    1979 - 1981

  • (Other) - Fellowship

    University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, MI

    1986 - 1988

Hospital Affiliation

  • Baptist Medical Center South
  • Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville

Legal Practice Name

Baptist MD Anderson Cancer Physicians Inc

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