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Jennifer C. Lai


Mother of two and tennis fanatic

Dr. Jennifer C. Lai is a general and transplant hepatologist who specializes in caring for patients with chronic viral hepatitis, autoimmune disorders or cirrhosis, particularly those awaiting liver transplantation.

Lai is active in patient-oriented research in three major areas: integrating core geriatric issues – such as frailty, disability, need for palliative care and multimorbidity (having more than one disease) – to patients with cirrhosis, investigating disparities in organ allocation and distribution, and assessing the impact of liver donor quality on outcomes.

As principal investigator for the Functional Assessment in Liver Transplantation (FrAILT) Study funded by the National Institutes of Health, Lai applies measures of frailty and functional status to patients with end-stage liver disease awaiting transplantation. Her research lays the groundwork for preparing these patients with therapeutic interventions that may improve their outcomes and quality of life. She is director of hepatology research at UCSF.

Lai earned her undergraduate degree from Stanford University and combined medical and master of business administration degrees from Tufts University. She completed her residency at New York–Presbyterian Hospital and fellowships in gastroenterology and transplant hepatology at UCSF.

Lai is a member of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, American Society of Transplantation, American Gastroenterological Association and American College of Gastroenterology. She is a fellow of the American College of Physicians.

  • Education

    Tufts University School of Medicine, 2005

  • Residencies

    New York Presbyterian Hospital, 2008

  • Board Certifications

    Gastroenterology, American Board of Internal Medicine

    Transplant Hepatology, American Board of Internal Medicine

  • Academic Title

    Associate Professor

My mission is to help more patients survive to transplant and thrive after.

Where I see patients (3)

    My reviews


    Overall Experience
    81 Ratings
    About our process
    Oct 26, 2023
    The Dr's are great. I feel very comfortable with them.
    Oct 26, 2023
    This provider explained everything from diagnosis to future plans and was quick to place the prescriptions that were needed I was pleasantly surprised by the professionalism
    Aug 10, 2023
    Dr Lai is the best.
    Jul 27, 2023
    Dr Lai is the best!!
    Jul 08, 2023
    Excellent doctor cares for patient very well
    Jul 07, 2023
    The doctor was BEYOND EXCELLENT. She fully explained my issues and what exactly the tests results showed and explained it in full details to where I was able to understand.
    Jun 30, 2023
    I really appreciated Dr. Lai's attention and thoughtfulness regarding my situation.
    Jun 07, 2023
    Super impressed by Dr. Lai. This was my first visit. She was compassionate knowledgeable and professional. Glad to be in her hands!
    Jun 06, 2023
    She address the problem and concern that I asked
    Apr 22, 2023
    Very good
    Apr 07, 2023
    Doctor totally listens to me and she was extremely brilliant extremely knowledgeable explained very well to me about my condition. Very impressed with my hepatologist.
    Apr 07, 2023
    1st time visit with Dr Lai. She was excellent put me at ease right away. Answered all of my questions. Very informative.
    Jan 12, 2023
    I changed our insurance to have Dr Lai to be my physician. Because she was very thorough she listen and explained what was going on with my liver. She cared and wanted the best for me.
    Jan 12, 2023
    The consultation gave me confidence that will help me In my conditions.
    May 06, 2022
    Highly recommend Keck
    Apr 19, 2022
    Fantastic doctor
    Feb 11, 2022
    It was.great!!

    Selected research

    Decorative Caduceus

    ALTA TIPS: A 5-year Longitudinal Observational Study of Patients Undergoing TIPS Placement

    Transjugular Intrahepatic Portosystemic Shunt (TIPS) was first developed as a salvage tool for life threatening variceal bleeding or for the management of severe ascites refractory to medical therapy. Over the past decade there ha...


    Decorative Caduceus

    Functional Assessment in Liver Transplantation

    Grip strength: Performance-based. Measured in kilograms. This was measured in each subject's dominant hand using a hand dynamometer (Jamar Hydraulic hand dynamometer). We averaged three trials. Chair stands: Performance-based. Mea...