Dr. Joel Fish specializes in burns and complex wound care and is currently is the Medical Director of the Burn Program at SickKids. He is a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and holds the position of Full Professor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Toronto.
Dr. Fish joined the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at SickKids in 2007 and served as the Research Director for the Division from 2007-2014. In 2009, Dr. Fish was appointed Medical Director of the Burn Program.
SickKids has the largest paediatric burn program in Canada with more than 300 new patients treated each year. In addition, it is the only paediatric burn program in Canada that has been verified by the American Burn Association. Dr. Fish's clinical practice focuses on the treatment of pediatric burn injuries which includes the full continuum from the acute injury, rehabilitation, and secondary reconstruction. Dr. Fish also specializes in treating severe complex wound conditions from a variety of other causes.
In addition to his clinical role at SickKids, Dr. Fish is a member of the Institute of Medical Science at the University of Toronto and currently supervises several graduate students. At present, his research team is focused on evaluating the effectiveness of laser therapy to improve burn scars in children. Dr. Fish is also interested in determining which technologies are best suited for evaluating scars following treatment.
In addition, Dr. Fish’s team is also working on several other projects related to the development of patient-reported outcome tools for children with scars. His team is currently in the process of evaluating a new scar assessment tool known as the “SCAR-Q”.
Education and experience
- 1994: FRCS(C), Plastic Surgery, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, Toronto, ON.
- 1986: MD, Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON.
- 1982: M.Sc., Skeletal muscle ischemia, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.
- 1982: B.Sc., Physiology and anatomy, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.
- 2020–Present: Full Professor of Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.
- 2009–Present: Medical Director Burn Program, Plastic Surgery, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON.
- 2007–2014: Research Director, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.
- 2002–2019: Associate Professor of Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.
- 1998–2008: Burn Program Director, Plastic Surgery, Ross Tilley Burn Center, Sunnybrook Hospital, Toronto, ON.
- 2018: Editor’s Choice Award, “Laser Therapy for Pediatric Burn Scars: Focusing on a Combined Treatment Approach,” – Journal of Burn Care and Research.
- 2017: James C. Fallis Award for Best Grand Rounds Presentation by an external speaker – Hospital for Sick Children.
- 2016: Ron Zuker Award – Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Toronto.
- 2014: Chair’s Award – Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Toronto.
- 2014: Best Pediatric Paper Award, “The construction and implementation of a novel post-burn pruritus scale for infants and children aged five years or less,” – Shriners Burns Institute.
- 2008: Dr. Charles Tator Surgeon Scientist Mentoring Award – Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto.
- 2008: Colin Woolf Award for Excellence in Course Coordination – Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto.
- 2006: Inaugural Canadian Burn Care Physician Award – Shriners Burns Institute.
- Zuccaro J, Muser I, Singh M, Yu, J, Kelly C, Fish J. Laser Therapy for Pediatric Burn Scars: Focusing on a Combined Treatment Approach. Journal of Burn Care and Research. 2018; 39(3): 457- 462.
- Toor J, Crain J, Kelly C, Verchere C, Fish J. Pediatric burns from glass-fronted fireplaces in Canada: a growing issue over the past 20 years. Journal of Burn Care and Research. 2016; 37(5):483 - 488.
- Everett T, Parker K, Fish J, Pehora C, Budd D, Kelly C, Crawford M, Hayes J. The construction and implementation of a novel postburn pruritus scale for infants and children aged five years or less: introducing the Toronto Pediatric Itch Scale. J Burn Care Res. 2015; 36(1):44-9.
- Grigorovich A, Gomez M, Leach L, Fish J. Impact of posttraumatic stress disorder and depression on neuropsychological functioning in electrical injury survivors. Journal of Burn Care and Research. 2013; 34(6): 659 - 665.
- Sowa M, Leonardi L, Payette J, Cross KM, Gomez M, Fish J. Classification of burn injuries using near-infrared spectroscopy. Journal of Biomedical Optics. 2006; 11(5):0540021 - 0540026.
- PSI Foundation Inc.
- American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery
- Pediatric Dermatology Research Appliance