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Veena Shankaran, MD

Dr. Shankaran is a medical oncologist who specializes in caring for patients with gastrointestinal malignancies, with a particular focus on cancers of the esophagus and stomach.

Patient Care Philosophy:

I believe in providing my patients and their families with the knowledge, perspective, compassion, and resources to navigate their illness and treatment course with self-assurance and dignity. In addition to providing access to the latest scientific data and clinical trials, I will work with my patients to develop an individualized treatment plan based on their particular needs and circumstances.

Dr. Shankaran's Resume


  • Assistant Professor, Medical Oncology, University of Washington School of Medicine
  • Assistant Member, Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Clinical Expertise

All gastrointestinal cancers including gastric, esophageal, colon, rectal, pancreas, and neuroendocrine tumors; primary clinical interest in cancers of the stomach and esophagus

Education And Training

  • Board Certification, Medical Oncology
  • Fellowship, Hematology and Oncology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Division of Hematology and Oncology, Chicago, IL
  • Internship and Residency, Internal Medicine, University of Michigan Department of Internal Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI
  • Medical Degree, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI 
  • B.A. in Philosophy, Magna Cum Laude, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH

More Information

Board Certification, Internal Medicine

For more information about Dr. Veena Shankaran's clinical and research expertise, click here.

Dr. Shankaran's Story

As an undergraduate Philosophy major, Dr. Veena Shankaran did not initially intend to pursue a career in medicine. She was ultimately drawn to the field through personal experience and a deep appreciation for science and the human spirit. During the course of medical school and internal medicine residency at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, she developed an interest in oncology.

“Not only were the diseases fascinating from a scientific standpoint, but I also felt I had a lot to offer oncology patients and their families emotionally,” she says.

Dr. Shankaran treats patients with gastrointestinal cancers and is a part of the Esophageal Cancer Specialty Clinic, a clinic designed to bring providers together to design and deliver a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to each individual patient.

Her research interests focus on the out-of-pocket costs that patients with gastrointestinal cancers experience as well as the cost-effectiveness of cancer therapy—studying how great care can be delivered without wasting resources. She is working with Dr. Scott Ramsey, an expert in the cost effectiveness of healthcare and health-related quality of life and director of the Hutchinson Institute for Cancer Outcomes Research in the Public Health Sciences Division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

When she isn’t working, Dr. Shankaran likes listening to opera, playing piano, and practicing yoga. Her husband is a physician at University of Washington Medical Center.