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Our Surgeons

There are many things to consider when you are choosing a colon and rectal surgeon.

But most of those considerations can be boiled down to just one question: does my surgeon treat this disorder often?

The surgeons in our division see a wide variety of colorectal conditions—from the simple to the serious—every day. As a result, we have a greater depth of experience than most colorectal surgeons, especially in handling complex or difficult cases.

Larissa Temple, MD

  • Professor of Surgery and Chief

Temple-webDr. Larissa KF Temple has been named Chief of the Division of Colorectal Surgery at UR Medicine and Director of SHORE. Dr. Temple completed General Surgery and Surgeon Scientist Program at the University of Toronto. She then moved to New York City and completed fellowships in Surgical Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Colorectal Surgery at St. Luke’s Roosevelt. Most recently she was a member of the Colorectal Surgery Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Temple has expertise in the management of colorectal diseases, and in particular, colorectal malignancies. She performs minimally invasive procedures, including robotic surgery to complex multi-surgeon pelvic procedures. Dr. Temple was the Director of the Colorectal Survivorship Program and the Vice Deputy Physician in Chief for Quality and Safety. She was named as one of New York City’s Top Doctors in 2016.

Dr. Temple has a national reputation in colorectal cancer and surgical quality. She presents nationally on outcomes after colorectal malignancies. She is a member of ASCO program committee and the American College of Surgeons Rectal Cancer Standards Operative Workgroup. Dr. Temple chairs the Quality Assessment Committee for the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgery. She is a member of the Surgery Standing Committee for the National Quality Forum, the American College of Surgeons Performance Measurement Work group, the Society of Surgical Oncology Quality Committee and the planning committee for the Quality Symposium for the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Lisa Cannon, MD

  • Associate Professor of Surgery

“It is very important to me that my patients are actively involved in the decision-making process. I want them to understand their disease as best as possible, and Cannontogether we’ll come up with a plan for treatment.”

I was drawn to the field of colorectal surgery because the management of most colon and rectal diseases and conditions is nuanced and requires a strong patient-physician partnership. My patients are always active partners in their own care. During my subspecialty training, I had a unique amount of exposure to inflammatory bowel disease patients. My interest in caring for Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis has grown from there, and today this is a strong clinical focus within my practice. In addition, I treat diverticulitis, colon and rectal cancer, anal cancer, colon volvulus and benign anorectal disorders.

Since I offer a very hands-on approach to care, my patients can depend on me to be responsive to questions and concerns. I also have a special interest in enhanced recovery pathways and patient education, and want my patients to let me know if something isn’t working for them so that we can come up with a care solution. I consider myself a good steward of hospital-based resources, and enjoy collaborating with referring institutions and providers. Although I do not have a solution for every clinical problem, I will never turn away an overly complex patient.

Christina Cellini, MD

Christina Cellini

  • Associate Professor of Surgery and Oncology

Dr. Cellini was born and raised in New York. She earned her undergraduate degree with Honors in Biology with a minor in nutritional sciences from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. She received her medical degree from Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York City.

Dr. Cellini completed her general surgery residency at the New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Weill Cornell Medical Center and completed three years there as a clinical research fellow studying GI motility. She then served as a colorectal surgery fellow at Washington University in St. Louis, Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri.

Dr. Cellini joined the University of Rochester Medical Center in 2009. Her research interests currently involve the study of microRNA expression in rectal cancers. She is board certified in both colorectal and general surgery.

Fergal J. Fleming, MD

Fergal Fleming

  • Associate Professor of Surgery and Oncology

Dr. Fleming has been a fellow in the URMC Division of Colorectal Surgery since 2009. He was awarded his medical degree from the University College of Dublin, Ireland and is also a fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

Dr. Fleming’s surgical residency included extensive training in general, vascular and hepatobiliary surgery, as well as dedicated training in colorectal surgery. He was successfully awarded the Intercollegiate Specialist Examination (UK and Ireland) in general surgery with a sub-specialty interest in colorectal surgery. Dr. Fleming also sees patients at the URMC Colorectal Physiology Center.

Rabih Salloum, MD

Rabih Salloum

  • Professor of Surgery and Oncology

Dr. Salloum received his medical degree from the American University of Beirut in Lebanon and completed his surgical residency at the University of Florida in Gainesville. He was a fellow in surgical oncology at the University of Chicago in Illinois.

Dr. Salloum is certified by the American Board of Surgery. His areas of interest include gastrointestinal surgical oncology, with special emphasis on colon cancer, as well as a technique for vascular access. Dr. Salloum also has special expertise in laparoscopic splenectomy.


Gabriela Poles, MD, MPH

  • Assistant Professor of Surgery and Oncology

Dr. Gabriela Poles received her Medical Doctorate and her Master of Public Health from Tufts University School of Medicine in 2012. She then completed her Gabriela Poles
General Surgery Residency at Maine Medical Center in 2017, followed by a Colorectal Surgery Fellowship at St. Mark’s Hospital in 2018.

Dr. Poles’ special interests are minimally invasive surgery, including laparoscopic, robotic and trans-anal surgery. She provides services for the breadth of colorectal surgery, including colorectal, appendiceal and anal cancer, diverticulitis, inflammatory bowel disease, pelvic floor disorders and anorectal diseases. Dr. Poles has a particular interest in inflammatory bowel disease and complex diverticulitis. Her other interests include outcomes research and community health.


Jenny Speranza, MD

Jenny Speranza

Dr. Speranza earned her medical degree from the School of Medicine, State University of New York at Buffalo. Prior to arriving at the University of Rochester Medical Center, Dr. Speranza was on staff at the Cleveland Clinic Florida, where she was an attending surgeon in the Department of Colon and Rectal Surgery.

She is currently the Director of the URMC Colorectal Physiology Center and is a national leader in the treatment and management of fecal incontinence. She has special interest in colorectal cancer, rectal prolapse and diverticulitis. Dr. Speranza is board certified in both colorectal and general surgery.


Zhaomin (Tim) Xu, MD, MPH

  • Assistant Professor of Surgery Tim Xu

Dr. Xu earned his medical degree from the the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and completed his residency in General Surgery at the University of Rochester. Dr. Xu completed a fellowship in Colorectal Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.

Dr. Xu's special interests are advanced endoscopic resections of colorectal polyps; anorectal disease; benign polyps; colon cancer, rectal cancer, anal cancer and appendiceal cancers; complex reoperations; diverticulitis; inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis, including pouch procedures and redo pouches; minimally invasive surgery including laparoscopic, robotic and transanal surgery; pelvic floor disorders