About Dr. Martin Goodman
With decades of surgical experience, Dr. Martin Goodman is a highly sought-after board-certified surgeon at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts. He is also an assistant professor of surgery at the Tufts University School of Medicine.
He is noted as one of the pioneers of the HIPEC procedure to treat patients diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma, who were historically considered terminally ill.
At Tufts Medical Center — the first hospital in Massachusetts to use the HIPEC procedure — Dr. Goodman serves as the director of the Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program.
Dr. Goodman’s Career Highlights
Dr. Goodman’s professional achievements include:
- Becoming a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons
- Being recruited by Tufts Medical Center as director of the Advanced Abdominal Tumor and Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program
- Publishing “Regional Therapeutics for Advanced Malignancies” — a guide to treating cancer in various parts of the body
Dr. Goodman’s Background
Dr. Goodman studied medicine at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Jersey and received his medical degree in 1994.
He pursued an internship at New York Medical College before completing his residency at Cooper University Hospital and a surgical oncology fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh.
Dr. Goodman previously served as the director of Surgical Oncology at Dorothy Schneider Cancer Center in California, launching the first Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program in Northern California.
In July 2007, after devoting his career to finding a cure for some of the rarest and most difficult cancers to treat — including mesothelioma — Dr. Goodman was named the director of the Advanced Abdominal Tumor and Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program at Tufts Medical Center.
Dr. Goodman is affiliated with these professional organizations:
- American College of Surgeons (Fellow)
- American Society of Clinical Oncology (Member)
- Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract (Member)
- Society for Surgical Oncology (Member)
Dr. Goodman specializes in HIPEC, a treatment that has been shown to improve the overall survival of peritoneal mesothelioma patients. This treatment is typically performed in conjunction with cytoreduction surgery.
Cytoreduction is a procedure that can take 8-12 hours to complete. The surgeon begins by opening the abdomen, examining the organs, and removing any tumors. In extreme cases, other affected organs may also be removed.
Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC)
After the cytoreductive surgery, the abdomen will be partially closed before a heated chemotherapy solution is applied directly to the cavity.
Did You Know?
The HIPEC solution is heated to 109 degrees Fahrenheit as cancer cells die at around 104 degrees and healthy cells at 111 degrees. This median temperature kills the cancerous cells while not damaging the healthy cells.
The abdomen will then be closed for 60-90 minutes to allow the chemotherapy to treat the remaining tumors and kill mesothelioma cells. The solution is then removed and sometimes followed by radiation before the abdomen is closed for a final time.
Annually, Dr. Goodman and his specialized team perform approximately 50 HIPEC procedures. The treatment is known to improve and prolong peritoneal mesothelioma patients’ lives.
“[HIPEC] can definitely prolong the time intervals when the tumor might recur, and [patients] won’t have to be on chemotherapy for the rest of their lives. In some cases, potentially, you can cure patients, whereas before, it was incurable.”
Dr. Goodman’s Career Accomplishments
Dr. Goodman has saved the lives of hundreds of patients throughout his career. As the director of the Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program and an assistant professor of surgery at the Tufts University School of Medicine, he has devoted his life to research and surgery in the hope of finding a cure for peritoneal cancers.
Awards & Honors
Dr. Goodman’s awards and honors include:
- Top Doctor, Boston Magazine, 2010-2013, 2015, 2017-2021
- Top Cancer Doctors 2015, Newsweek
- Top Doctors for Cancer, Castle Connolly, 2017
- Resident Teaching Award, Tufts MC, 2017
- Schwartz Center Compassionate Caregiver Award
Dr. Goodman’s Current Work
As director of the Peritoneal Surface Malignancy Program at Tufts Medical Center, Dr. Goodman is a world leader in the treatment of peritoneal mesothelioma.
He is trained in every aspect of the HIPEC procedure and is adept at knowing how to treat patients in ways that help maximize their recovery.
“Our results — when you look at the data across the country as well as internationally — are excellent. I’ve probably done 250 of these in my career, so we know what problems to potentially expect and how to take care of them. That’s really where the experience comes into play.”
Notable Work by Dr. Goodman
Dr. Goodman is the author of the book ‘Regional Therapeutics for Advanced Malignancies’, a short guide to the treatment of cancer around the body, including peritoneal diseases. It’s the most comprehensive guide available regarding therapeutic technologies for treating rare and advanced cancers by their disease locations.
Dr. Goodman’s book, “Regional Therapeutics for Advanced Malignancies,” is used in medical schools to help the next generation of specialized oncologists understand rare and aggressive cancers. It is also widely recognized as a handbook and guide for existing medical professionals to help improve patient treatment.
Dr. Goodman’s goal is to give his patients the chance to live longer, pain-free lives. He believes that cytoreduction with HIPEC can help accomplish this goal — especially in comparison to other peritoneal mesothelioma treatments.
In contrast to patients who receive regular chemotherapy, patients who undergo the HIPEC procedure (with direct, heated chemotherapy) have been shown to live longer.
However, while the surgery can take up to 12 hours, the recovery is expected to take several months. Only patients who are strong enough to survive the recovery will be eligible for the HIPEC treatment.
“It’s going to take 2-3 months to feel almost back to normal. [The patient] will be very fatigued and exhausted during that time period, but I tell them to get up and move around… every day do a little bit more.”
Dr. Goodman says that patients must prepare themselves for fatigue throughout their extensive recovery. Bleeding and infections are two of the most common issues that can occur after the procedure, and the risk of complications is higher than with other surgeries.