Mark A. Varvares, M.D., FACS

Associate Chair of Otolaryngology, Harvard Medical School

Professor of Otolaryngology, Harvard Medical School


Head and Neck Surgery

Thyroid and Parathyroid Surgery

Board Certification

  • Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery

Main Campus
243 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-573-3192
Fax: 617-573-6315
Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.



Specializing in head and neck ablative and reconstructive surgery, Dr. Mark Varvares serves as the Associate Chair of Otolaryngology at Harvard Medical School. A 1986 graduate of Saint Louis University School of Medicine, Dr. Varvares completed his residency in otolaryngology at Massachusetts Eye and Ear/Harvard Medical School in 1991 prior to completing his clinical fellowship in head and neck reconstructive surgery at Mass. Eye and Ear. 

Dr. Varvares first joined the full-time faculty of Mass. Eye and Ear/Harvard Medical School in 1992, following two years in a community-based practice. In 2003, he accepted a Department Chairmanship at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, where he successfully established a multidisciplinary program in head and neck oncology, among his many other accomplishments. In 2015, he returned to Boston to rejoin the full-time faculty of Mass. Eye and Ear/Harvard Medical School. 

In his capacity as Associate Chair, Dr. Varvares oversees clinical and research program development across the Harvard Medical School affiliate programs. His clinical interests include squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck, free flap reconstruction of head and neck defects, skull base surgery, surgery of the parotid, thyroid and parathyroid glands, surgery of the larynx, and cancer of the nose and paranasal sinuses. He also conducts a productive research program in head and neck oncology, studying how surgical pathology of head and neck tumors impact survival. Other research interests include a variety of topics in head and neck reconstruction, the role of oncolytic adenoviruses as a possible therapeutic modality to treat head and neck cancer, and the role of music therapy as an intervention in cancer management.

Select Publications:

Efficacy of bone marrow cytologic evaluations in detecting occult cancellous invasion. Namin AW, Bruggers SD, Panuganti BA, Christopher KM, Walker RJ, Varvares MA. Laryngoscope. 2014 Nov 28.

Improved overall survival in head and neck cancer with adjuvant concurrent chemoradiology in national databases. Lin S, Massa S, Varvares, M. Head & Neck. 2014 Sep 16.

Evaluation of apotogenic adenovirus type oncolytic vectors in a Syrian hamster head and neck cancer model. Vijayalingam S, Kuppuswamy M, Subramanian T, Strebeck FF, West CL, Varvares M, Chinnadurai G. Cancer Gene Ther. 2014 Jun. 21(6):228-37.

PET-CT and the detection of the asymptomatic recurrence or second primary lesions in the treated head and neck cancer patient. Dunsky KA, Wehrmann DJ, Osman MM, Thornberry BM, Varvares MA. Laryngoscope. 2013. 123:2161-2164.

Successful myoblast transplantation in rat tongue reconstruction. Luxameechanporn T, Hadlock T, Shyu J, Cowan D, Faquin W, Varvares M. Head Neck. 2006. 28(6):517-524.

Surgical margin determination in head and neck oncology: Current clinical practice. The results of an International American Head and Neck Society member survey. Meier JD, Oliver DA, Varvares MA. Head Neck. 2005. 27(11):952-958.

Success of multiple, sequential, free tissue transfers to the head and neck. Varvares MA, Lin D, Hadlock T, Azizzadeh B, Gliklich R, Rounds M, Rocco J, Deschler DG, Fabian R, Cheney ML. Laryngoscope. 2005. 115(1):101-104.

Repair of chronic subglottic stenosis with autogenous thyroid cartilage. Varvares MA, Montgomery WW. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 2004. 113(3 Pt. 1):212-217.

Histological pattern of mandibular invasion by oral squamous cell carcinoma. Wong RJ, Keel SB, Glynn RJ, Varvares MA. Laryngoscope. 2000. 110(1):65-72.

Use of the radial forearm fasciocutaneous free flap and Montgomery salivary bypass tube for pharyngoesophageal reconstruction. Varvares MA, Cheney ML, Gliklich RE, Boyd JM, Goldsmith T, Lazor J, Baron JC, Montgomery WW. Head Neck. 2000. 22(5):463-468.

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  • Saint Louis University School of Medicine, M.D.


  • Northwestern University School of Medicine (General Surgery)


  • Saint Louis University School of Medicine (Otolaryngology)
  • Saint Louis University School of Medicine (Otolaryngology)


  • Massachusetts Eye and Ear (Head and Neck Reconstructive Surgery)