Dr. Wapnir’s work in the field of breast oncology spans clinical and translational research. Her past bench research centered on elucidating the activity of the sodium iodide symporter in lactation and breast cancer. She conducted studies on the impact of breast cancer locoregional recurrences with colleagues from the NSABP (NRG Oncology) Cooperative Oncology Group. Based on these, she co-chaired the CALOR (Chemotherapy for isolated locoregional recurrence of breast cancer) trial, that has since defined the use of systemic therapies for this patient population. Nationally, she has been continuously engaged in clinical trials as a member of the NRG Breast Locoregional Subcommittee and NCI-BOLD Task Force.

Dr Wapnir’s efforts focus on extending therapeutic options and advancing the treatment of breast cancer. As such, she designed a novel randomized clinical trial at Stanford, to test the effectiveness of neoadjuvant partial breast irradiation followed by delayed lumpectomy surgery for women with ductal carcinoma in situ (NORDIS: NeOadjuvant Radiation of Ductal Carcinoma In Situ) []. Other institutional investigator-initiated studies she has pioneered range from understanding skin perfusion patterns in mastectomy flaps to improve outcomes in nipple sparing mastectomies and safeguard against ischemic complications to the efficacy of black ink tattooing as a technique for marking of biopsied axillary lymph nodes. Together with Dr. Dung Nguyen, she has devised an innovative approach for breast reconstruction, creating a biological implant based on omental free flaps and fat-grafting [], providing patients with a unique alternative for mastectomy reconstruction.

Additional unique clinical studies and services she is leading institutionally include:
(1) Pivotal trial, using fluorescent based technology to detect residual breast cancer in the lumpectomy cavity [].
(2) Immune-stimulating local treatments for inoperable, metastatic breast cancer (Melinda Telli, MD, PI) to activate a systemic immune response.

Professional Summary

Education & Certifications
  • Fellowship: Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Breast Surgery Fellowship (1988) NJ
  • Residency: Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center General Surgery Residency (1985) NY
  • Internship: Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center General Surgery Residency (1981) NY
  • Board Certification: American Board of Surgery, General Surgery (1986)
  • Medical Education: Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana (1980) Mexico
  • MD, Universidad A. Metropolitana, Medicine (1980)
  • BA, Goucher College, Biological Sciences (1975)

Awards & Memberships
  • Awards Committee, Assoc Women Surgeons (2004-2010)
  • National Cancer Institute BOLD Task Force, NCI- Breast Oncology Locoregional Disease Task Force (2018-present)
  • Protocol Chair Breast Cancer Local Recurrence Trial, NSABP/NRG (2006-2010)
  • Publications Committee, American Society of Breast Surgeons (2010-2013)
  • SSO-ASTRO-ASCO Consensus Guideline On Margins for Ductal carcinoa in situ, Margins Panel on DCIS Margins (2015)
  • The Maastricht Breast Cancer Endpoint Consensus Group, Maastricht Breast Cancer Endpoint Consensus Group (2013)
  • Visiting Scholar, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Israel (2012)
  • Working Group Breast Committee, NSABP/NRG (2000- present)

Administrative Appointments
  • Chief of Breast Surgery, Section of Surgical Oncology (2005 - 2019)


Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.

Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.

Practice Locations

Stanford Women's Cancer Center Palo Alto, CA
Palo Alto, CA

900 Blake Wilbur Drive, 1st Floor

Palo Alto , CA 94304

(650) 498-6000

Make An Appointment More Clinic Information » Getting Here »

Breast Cancer Program in Palo Alto Palo Alto, CA
Palo Alto, CA

900 Blake Wilbur Drive, 1st Floor

Palo Alto , CA 94304

(650) 498-6000

Make An Appointment More Clinic Information » Getting Here »

Patient Ratings

(157 Ratings)

Overall Rating

View Ratings by Category

Friendliness/courtesy of the care provider
Explanations the care provider gave you about your problem or condition
Concern the care provider showed for your questions or worries
Care provider's efforts to include you in decisions about your care
Care provider's efforts to include you in decisions about your treatment
Recommended to others
Likelihood of your recommending this care provider to others
Wait times
Wait time at clinic (from arriving to leaving)

How Our Ratings Work

The Patients Ratings and comments are gathered from our Patient Satisfaction Survey and displayed in their entirety.

Patient Satisfaction Survey Disclaimer

Patient Reviews

(168 reviews)

Dr Wapnir laid out several options then said we would pursue the one I wanted. I appreciated her seeking my wishes for my treatment.
Everything was amazing and wonderful!
Not rushed. Very thorough. Aubrey Ann , resident was comforting. Dr Wapnir has no room for improvement. She is really cut out for the work she does. Straightforward and skilled. Sensitive and supportive. I feel very confident in my treatment and the team approach . Very positive experience considering the heavy diagnosis.
After being invited into exam room by a nurse on time of my appointment and answered a few questions from an in-residence doctor, I have waited in the exam room for almost an hour to see a doctor. She was brief and professional but didn't show any particular interest in my questions, referring me to another doctor. I understand it was not her particular area but my questions arose out of oncology concerns and she failed to address them. I left the appointment with no clear guidance
Dr. Wapnir is very knowledgeable and genuinely cares about her patient’s wellbeing and long-term health.
Excellent care
knowledgable, answered questions clearly, did not rush the appointment
I have no doubt I am in the right place. I feel very good about the plan we have.
Dr. Wapnir was very informative, knowledgeable and personable as well as NP, Victoria. They are A Good team!
Very thorough and caring provider
I really appreciated the nurse summarizing the medical speak. She spent all the time I needed to thoroughly understand my situation.
They were very nice and helped me anything I need.
Great friendly staff
Dr Wapnir is a great doctor, very thoughtful and thorough.
Dr Wapnir is an excellent surgeon and did exemplary work on my procedure. Very happy with it. I am confuse as was Dr Wapnir on how the tumor was missed in the left breast with the MRI. Hoping to find an answer to that question.
Wonderful staff and very thorough
Dr Wapnir is excellent in her care. She is a scientist and a great patient advocate. She is truly an expert in her field. She has done everything possible to provide the best care for me with my diagnosis .
I’m very happy with Dr. Wapnir.
Dr Wapnir is fantastic. She saved me.
Very Calm and explained things slowly.
Dr. Wapnir took the time to listen to my concern and provided information in a way i could understand. I definitely felt heard and left there feeling confident in my decision without any pressure.
Dr Wapnir really cares about her patients.
Wait time was too long. Was asked to change into a patient gown for no reason (physical exam was not needed at the follow up visit).
Dr Wapnir and her team are exceptional.
Very informative I was even given visual illustrations of what was explain to me it was awesome.
Dr Wapnir is an excellent physician. She has patient's best interest at heart.
She really care about her patients.
Dr. Wapnir is a very skilled and an awesome surgeon. As a patient I've seen and believe that she has my best interest at all times. I felt sad and happy when I was told I no longer don't need to see her. I am truly thankful with the care and expertise that she provided for me.
I found Dr. Wapnir to be very kind and also rather brutally honest which is what I was asking for so my impression is that Dr. Wapnir really tries to understand her patients.
The staff, including Dr Wapnir was very kind,caring and informative.
Wait time indicator in waiting room was not accurate, but doctor was excellent
Thank you!
Dr. Wapnir is very attentive and takes the time to answer all of my questions.
Dr.Wapnir rocks she is the best!
Knowledgeable and caring.
Excellent doctor: expertise in her field; well-trained and compassionate physician.
Stanford is the BEST once you get a doctor.
Dr. Wapnir is excellent. She is professional, caring, and listens to her patient.
Dr. Wapnir is an excellent breast surgeon.
Dr. Wapnir is the reason that I go to Stanford. She is personable, most knowledgeable, listens to any issues or questions that one has.
Appreciate her thorough approach to surgery preparation and willingness to consider and counsel me on cosmetic results as well as removal of the disease.
I did not find Dr. Wapnir very warm or welcoming and I will be requesting to see another provider.
I have experienced Very engaged doctors and team members
Dr. Wapnir is highly regarded and very knowledgeable in her field. Also, very respectful and relates extremely well with her patients. Her Resident, Dr. Ju, equally learning from the best.
She is practical, forthright but listens to question and answers straight forwardly. I wouldn't say she is overly warm and friendly but she is not rude or abrupt
I hope that Dr. Wapnir is amazing at performing surgeries to make up for her lack of skills in interacting with patients.
Terrific knowledge and dedication. Dr. Wapnir was very thorough and helped me reach a decision I am comfortable with.
Dr. Wapnir shows an intellectual as well as an emotional concern for her patients. She is an excellent surgeon.
First visit.
Dr. Wapnir is always nice and very sensitive to my feelings. It was an unfortunate circumstance to meet her, but I'm glad to getting to know Dr. W.
Dr. Wapnir has lots of knowledge in his profession. Great kindness and respect.
Dr. Wapnir & Residents were clear about what to expect, professional and did an outstanding job communicating options, what to expect etc...
Actually - No problems!
Dr. Wapnir is the reason I continue to use Stanford Breast Center. She is professional, informative honest - listens to my questions and concerns.
My experience w/Dr. Wapnir has been excellent as well as w/her medical assistant.
LOVE Dr. Wapnir - direct, clear, thorough, professional. Met Dr. Momeni - who explained procedures in incredible detail.
Everyone is very nice and friendly and in good manner also.
Poor body language undermined previous practitioners, seemed annoyed or disinterested, yet narcissistic.
She dr. was not polite when asking a question of a follow up procedure. She raised her voice.
Dr. Wapnir is extraordinary. I feel lucky to have her as my surgeon.
Outstanding in every area. BRAVO STANFORD!!!
Dr. Wapnir was honest & clean in presenting the situation. I appreciated that.
Dr. Wapnir ALWAYS caring & compassionate!
Excellent surgeon.
Dr. Wapnir & staff were professional they never rushed through my appointment and answered all my questions in detail.
Dr. Wapnir is the reason I go to Stanford Medical. I have all the confidence in the world in her. She is one of the best doctors I have ever been to.
Dr. Wapnir is GREAT!!! She saved my life... 18 yr. breast cancer survivor! We have a wonderful doctor/patient relationship. My husband comes to my appts. and Dr. Wapnir & him have a good relationship.
I thank God for Stanford and Dr. Wapnir. She is OUTSTANDING.
Great care provided for me.
Best I've ever had out of all hosp. (CMPC, UCSF) Marin Gen.
Dr. Wapnir is outstanding. she is caring, supportive, knowledgeable and the best physician I've had the pleasure to work with. I trust her completely.
The doctors & staff were excellent.
Dr. Wapnir is extraordinary in surgical treatment and the human touch.
Dr. Wapnir is amazing!
Dr. Wapnir is a great surgeon. As long as I'm living I am very thankful. I could tell she is a strong & confident surgeon which is what I needed. If she is a coffee, she is an espresso with a naturally occurring sugar.
Dr. Wapnir is excellent. I would recommend her to anyone needing breast surgery.
Dr. Wapnir was so helpful and professional. I had other doctors tell me horror stories or belittle me before. Dr. Wapnir is wonderful.
Dr. Wapnir was perfect for me. She was a mix of care & honesty/truth. She's not particularly warm & fuzzy, but I had complete confidence in her & felt she always had my health, happiness & best interests in mind. I trusted her & could feel her competence.
Excellent attention! Thanks!
I did not get pertinent information about my condition and and explanation for the best care going forward, I feel very sad about this experience.
Main reason I'm there is taking part in Dr. Telli's study and she sees me every time. She is one of the best dr. a patient expects.
I've had surgery done by Dr. Wapnir twice in 12 years and find her to be an exacting, conscientious, and scrupulous surgeon, always informative, yet always caring and personable. What more could one ask!
Very good.
In the 2 1/2 years since my diagnosis of cancer, Dr. Wapnir is hands down the best oncological breast surgeon I have seen to date.
Was actually scheduled with a different provider. Dr. Wapnir made time (unscheduled) for a consultation with me. Very impressed with all personnel.
Dr. Wapnir is the reason I drive 100 miles for my medical attention. There is a closer breast clinic/hospital 5 miles from my home, but I choose Dr. Wapnir.
Dr. Wapnir is thorough, careful and has common sense, often lacking in Stanford docs, and much to be applauded.
Dr. Wapnir is truly a fabulous physician. She is kind, patient, informative and an outstanding listener which is incredibly appreciated. Stanford is lucky to have her!!
Dr. Wapnir has always provided me with the best care - answered my questions and advised me - I have the utmost respect and gratitude for and to this wonderful woman.
A very compassionate dr.
Good - very competent staff.
She is the best there is. Always caring & friendly.
Dr. Wapnir devotes time to details/she is always so comforting.
Dr. Wapnir is amazing - I would (and have) recommended her to others wholeheartedly.
Dr. Irene Wapnir is the best dr. I have had my whole life.
I left more confused than when I arrived & dr. seemed dismissive to my concerns. She pushed her own agenda & didn't listen to me.
Wapnir always has time to answer all questions and is genuinely concerned with my care and outcome.
Very much appreciate being fit in through Dr. Wapnirhad a surgery to get to.
All my visits have been excellent thanks to all of Doctor Wapnir, Irene Leonor's team.
She confused me, didn't answer my questions & was very dismissive I'll be cancelling my follow up visit & pursuing another physician.
Dr. Wapnir & I go way back. I was one of her first patients. She has taken excellent care of me over the last 16 yrs. She saved my life!
Dr. Wapnir is outstanding in every way.
Irene is the BEST! She knows her staff and she is a great advocate for the patient!
Dr. Wapnir is the best. Very glad I went to Stanford Cancer Center.
Dr. Wapnir either doesn't talk to me or walk in and walk out with me or two sentences. She leave me with her assistance for all examination and discussion.
I've never had a bad experience at Stanford Health Care.
Very pleased with interactions with all providers I had contact with.
I have a long history with Dr. Wapnir and trust her with my life.
The best!
Dr. Wapnir is the BEST! I would not consider going to anyone else. I love her!
The best!!
She is a very busy doctor but spends her time efficiently with her patient!!
I appreciate that Dr. Wapnir follows up on her patients, herself - It is the reason I drive to Stanford from Fremont. Kerry Shefren, NP who works with Dr. Wapnir is also excellent.
Dr. Wapnir went out of her way to ease my concerns due to a lump I had. She rushed my mammo & U. sound up so I wouldn't need to wait a month. Very blessed to have her.
I am very pleased with Dr Irene Wapnir and her colleagues. Each of the individuals I dealt with were exceptional from the Med Tech, her Nurse, Nurse Practitioner and of course, Dr. Wapnir.
The Doctor Wapnir spent few time with me. Gave me impression that her time is valuable and don't want to spend them with me. All communication is her assistant who is nice and patient.
Provider again was clear & thorough, we were able to ask questions, explained everything. Left freely very good & now we would be taken care of.
Dr. Wapnir is the reason I go to Stanford. I have full confidence in anything Dr. Wapnir recommends. Her knowledge and understanding of our conditions and concerns is well above any other doctor.
Excellent help-wonderful surgeon!
Experience was great, would of liked just a bit more time explaining type tumor. But was REASSURING to me same "plan" would continue.
I always have and exceptionally good experience with Dr. Wapnir.
I would have liked a little bit more time with Dr. Wapnir before other members entered the room (more one on one explanations).
Because of the trust & confidence I have in Dr. Wapris, the problems that I am face are surmountable.
Dr. Wapnir and has her physician (cardiac) assistant were wonderful.
The physician assistant and Doctor were excellent and very caring. They answered all my questions and made me at ease and comfortable. I would recommend them.
I was made to feel so much more comfortable with my situation & Dr. Wagner & Telli went out of their way to help me! I am grateful to both of them.
We could not believe the time she spent with us it was as though she had no other patient that day - amazing to feel that way as a patient.
Dr. Wapnir is an outstanding doctor. I have recommended her to many others and they all love her too....they thank me for giving them her name. Dr. Wapnir has so much knowledge and uses it to help you with your treatment plan and things are always done in a timely fashion - she can make things happen!! Her PA Candice is wonderful and so is Jackie that is also in her department. I am very blessed that God led me to Dr. Wapnir.
They were very good I am very appreciative with the care & treatment of everyone.
Dr. Wapnir was in a hurry. Was somewhat abrupt with me. Looked in cabinet for cytology supplies, but when not found, didn't both to get from somewhere else, so nipple discharge wasn't sent to lab. Was short with me & a bit demeaning when I asked about HRT.
I highly recommend to my friend and to all my relations about Stanford.
Dr. Wapnir saved my life! I am almost 15 years cancer free!!
Both Dr. & PA were a bad experience.
Highly recommended!
I can not praise Dr. Wapnir & her medical staff enough! Wonderful! Thank you much!!
Kerry Shefren NP, was very professional and caring. Dr. Wapnir was outstanding. I felt very comfortable in their hands!
I have the highest confidence in Dr. Wapnir professional judgment and value her care and concern.
Dr. Wapnir is the best!!
Dr. Wapnir is an amazing doctor & woman. Her staff is also wonderful.
Dr. Wapnir & her PA are both outstanding. They are competent, responsive and extremely caring.
Good rather than very good - answers to some questions skillfully avoided.
I recommended Dr. Wapnir for my daughter.
Dr. Wapnir - she is wonderful - a great surgeon AND spent needed time with me explaining the best path for me - Cannot praise our work & efforts enough!
Jenny & Jenn-Marie are warm, caring people who make me feel like my well-fare is a top priority!
I didn't feel like Dr. Wapnir had much time for me.
The provider did not ask what my goals were for my treatment. She assumed that I value what she values and that is not the case -
She is great ,i can not ask for more
I previously commented about Dr. Irene Wapnir in this survey. I think she provides exceptional care to her patients, and she instills confidence in my to continue my care with her at Stanford.
I came in sick - a non-breast issue. Dr. Wapnir brought in someone to help me with my problem.
I have had years of excellent care.
All good.
Dr. Wapnir is fantastic!! She along with Dr. Carlson & the staff at Stanford saved my life. I am a 13 yr breast cancer survivor thanks to them!
I have already been praising my experience to anyone with health issues.
Already recommended Dr. Wapnir to all my sisters and friends. We love Dr. Wapnir. I donate to Stanford every year because of her excellent care -
I'm pleased w/my dr. except I would like a phone call after my blood tests.
I have complete confidence in Dr. Wapnir. My experience with Stanford Breast Center has been outstanding.
I felt that Dr. Wapnir really listened to me and thoroughly explained potential next steps.
She seemed to genuinely care about me/her patients, but seemed to have an agenda around her preferred treatment/studies.
Dr. Irene Wapnir is an extraordinary doctor, highly professional caring, attentive, and knowledgeable.
Dr. Wapnir is the BEST.
Response to all questions after the appt. was very prompt.
Excellent surgeon, but just "OK" bedside manner.
I love Dr. Wapnir. She is very nice to me.

View More »

Referring Physicians

  • Send referrals online
  • Place radiology orders
  • View referral status
  • Access medical records