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James Cook, MD, General Surgery, Arlington, VA, Virginia Hospital Center


General Surgery Arlington, VA

General Surgeon

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  • Like most doctors, I have a deep, abiding passion for quality patient care. As a surgeon, I always remember one thing: Surgery is dangerous. No matter how routine the case, my team and I should always be prepared for the unexpected. Its an amazing feat of science, skill, planning, and teamwork that what we do everyday in operating rooms around the world almost always goes smoothly and routinely. And it easy to get complacent... "Just another gallbladder.. hmmm...I wonder what's for lunch..." But... its not just "another gallbladder"... its a person. A person who probably barely knows me and yet instinctively trusts me enough to perform surgery on them at a vulnerable time. I never forget that it could be me on that operating table... or someone I love.

    Surgeons are not made great by ego, pedigree, collection rate, or the shiny corporate logo on their office door... but by humility, compassion, empathy, and the ability to act decisively and confidently when the situation dictates.

    I am passionate about always striving to improve not just "patient care", but the patient "experience." I think what qualities would I want in my surgeon... Is he well-trained? Is he respected by his peers? Is he rested? Does he have the equipment and support to make my surgery safe? You get the picture.

    Also, I love incorporating new technologies and techniques as they come along. So many times in my career, I've met so much resistance to change. "That's not how we do it here." "Your partners always use X... why do you want to use Y?" The simple fact is we need not fear change, but should embrace it. As the medical industry struggles to find its identity in the new millennium, one this is certain... its not going to be how we expected.

Education & Training

  • MedStar Health/Georgetown-Washington Hospital
    MedStar Health/Georgetown-Washington HospitalChief Residency, Surgery, 2002 - 2003
  • MedStar Health/Georgetown-Washington Hospital
    MedStar Health/Georgetown-Washington HospitalResidency, Surgery, 1997 - 2003
  • MedStar Washington Hospital Center
    MedStar Washington Hospital CenterFellowship, Surgical Research Postdoc Fellow, 1999 - 2000
  • MedStar Washington Hospital Center
    MedStar Washington Hospital CenterFellowship, Surgical Research, 1999 - 2000
  • Baylor College of Medicine
    Baylor College of MedicineClass of 1997

Certifications & Licensure

  • VA State Medical License
    VA State Medical License 2015 - 2026
  • NC State Medical License
    NC State Medical License 2005 - 2020
  • SC State Medical License
    SC State Medical License 2004 - 2009
  • DC State Medical License
    DC State Medical License 2003 - 2004
  • American Board of Surgery Surgery

Publications & Presentations


Hospital Affiliations