Surgery & Surgical Specialties

This academic section contains academic and clinical staff from surgery and surgery-related specialties including anaesthesia, breast surgery, colorectal & cardiothoracic surgery, general and vascular surgery, ophthalmology, orthopaedic surgery, otorhinolaryngology and urology.

This section is responsible for all surgery related teaching within our medicine clinical curriculum and delivers a focused research programme which supports MCh and PhD student degree programmes.  It is led by Professor Ronan O’Connell, UCD Professor of Surgery at St Vincent’s Healthcare Group and UCD Principal Investigator.

Subject Areas Within this Section


The pharmacological inducement of a reversable amnesia, analgesia including the suppression of musculoskeletal responses or reflexes for the purposes of blocking or temporarily removing a pain response.

Heads of Subject: Prof Donal Buggy (Anaesthesia) ; Prof Alistair Nichol (Critical Care Medicine)


The branch of medicine that deals with the anatomy, physiology and diseases of the eye. An ophthalmologist is a specialist in medical and surgical eye problems. Since ophthalmologists perform operations on eyes, they are considered to be both surgical and medical specialists.

Head of Subject: Professor Colm O'Brien



Also known as ENT (ear, nose and throat), this is the branch of medicine and surgery that focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the head and neck.

Head of Subject: Professor Aongus Curran



The manual or instrumental interventional procedures through which disease or injury is investigated and/or treated to improve bodily function or appearance.

Head of Subject: Prof Ronan O'Connell


Biography: Professor Ronan O'Connell

Professor Ronan O'Connell is Professor of Surgery and Consultant Surgeon at St Vincent's University Hospital since September 2007. He was previously Senior Lecturer in Surgery at the Royal London Hospital (1989-1990), consultant surgeon at the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital (1990-2007) and Newman Clinical Research Professor at UCD (2002- 2007). In 2009 he was appointed head of the Section of Surgery and Surgical Sciences at University College Dublin. In 2011 he was elected Chairman of the South East Dublin Department of Surgery. 

Prof O'Connell graduated from Dublin University, trained in Dublin and Cork and completed specialist training in Colon and Rectal Surgery at the Mayo Clinic, Minnesota, USA. Prof O'Connell received the Dublin University Travelling Scholarship in Surgery (1983), a Fogarty Travelling Fellowship from NIH (1984) and a Council of Europe Travelling Scholarship (1989). He holds fellowships of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (1983) and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow (Honorary) (2001). He was elected to the Council of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in June 2008.  

Prof O'Connell is a member of the Irish Society of Coloproctology, a fellow of both the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland and the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons and secretary of the European Association of Coloproctology. He is a fellow of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland and a member of the Society of Pelvic Surgeons and the International Surgical Group. He is an elected member and Editor in Chief for the European Surgical Association. In 2010 he was elected to the James IV Society of Surgeons.