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William R. Ryan


Head and neck surgeon

Dr. William R. Ryan is an otolaryngologist and head and neck surgeon who cares for patients with cancerous and noncancerous tumors, as well as inflammatory disorders of the salivary glands. He has expertise in a range of surgeries to treat head and neck tumors, including robotic, endoscopic and other minimally invasive techniques, as well as traditional approaches. This expertise specifically includes transoral robotic surgery (a minimally invasive technique using high-definition 3D magnification for procedures in the mouth or throat), sialendoscopy (endoscopy for salivary gland disorders), sentinel lymph node biopsy (a procedure to check whether cancer has spread) and regional facial reconstruction. He also regularly performs ultrasounds in both the clinic and the operating room. He is committed to being accessible to his patients.

Ryan co-directs UCSF's program in robotic head and neck surgery, clinic for thyroid and parathyroid surgery, and center for salivary gland surgery. He conducts research on outcomes and other aspects of head and neck surgery, salivary duct surgery, and head and neck radiology. In addition, he teaches UCSF medical students, residents and fellows.

Ryan earned his medical degree at Stanford University School of Medicine, where he also completed a residency in otolaryngology – head and neck surgery. He completed a fellowship in advanced head and neck cancer and endocrine surgery at UCSF. He joined the UCSF faculty in 2011.

Ryan has authored more than 80 articles in medical journals and several book chapters. He is regularly invited to lecture and serve on panels around the country and at UCSF on various aspects of head and neck surgery, salivary duct surgery, and head and neck ultrasound. He co-directs two annual UCSF-sponsored conferences, one on innovations in otolaryngology – head and neck surgery and one on new techniques in salivary duct surgery.

In his free time, Ryan enjoys surfing, skiing, playing guitar, seeing live music, hiking, and spending time with friends and family, especially his wife, daughter and son.

  • Education

    Stanford University School of Medicine, 2005

  • Residencies

    Stanford University Medical Center, 2010

  • Fellowships

    UCSF, Advanced Head and Neck Oncologic Surgery, 2011

  • Board Certifications

    Otolaryngology, American Board of Otolaryngology

  • Academic Title

    Associate Professor

Where I see patients (4)

    My reviews


    Overall Experience
    452 Ratings
    Explained things in a way that was easy to understand
    449 Ratings
    Did the doctor pay attention to your concerns
    450 Ratings
    Gave easy to understand instructions about taking care of health problems or concerns
    414 Ratings
    Knew the important information about your medical history
    444 Ratings
    The provider showed respect for what you had to say
    447 Ratings
    The provider spent enough time with me
    447 Ratings
    Decorative Caduceus

    Ruxolitinib in Operable Head and Neck Cancer

    Measured as a proportional percent (range -100% to +100%) from baseline to day of final dose of ruxolitinib


    Please check with your health insurance plan regarding coverage for this type of care. Not all providers at UCSF are covered by every insurance plan.