Dr. Akemi Kawaguchi is an Associate Professor at McGovern Medical School at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth Houston) in the Department of Pediatric Surgery. She completed her Surgery residency at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA in 2006 and completed Pediatric Surgery training at Baylor College of Medicine/Texas Children’s Hospital in 2008. She also received a Master’s degree in clinical research from the University of Southern California.  Dr. Kawaguchi is board certified in Surgery and Pediatric Surgery.

Dr. Kawaguchi’s research focuses on congenital colorectal surgery, transition of care, parental engagement, patient safety and surgical quality. She is the surgeon champion for the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program – Pediatrics (NSQIP-P) and a member of the Surgical Safety Council at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital. Clinically, Dr. Kawaguchi is also the director of the Comprehensive Congenital Colorectal Program for both children and adults at UTHealth Houston.


University of California-Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
General Surgery - Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA
General Surgery - Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA
Pediatric Surgery - Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children's Hospital, Houston, TX

Areas of Interest

Clinical Interests

General Pediatric Surgery including neonatal disease, oncology, minimally invasive surgery, thoracic, abdominal surgery, with a special interest in the management of pediatric colorectal disorders.

Research Interests

Clinical research in pediatric surgery – patient safety, quality, outcomes for neonatal and pediatric surgical diseases, transition of care for pediatric surgical patients. Optimizing interdisciplinary teamwork and communication, engaging parents and families in their care.


Visit the PubMed profile page

Kawaguchi AL, Jain R, Hebballi NB, Pham DH, Putnam LR, Kao LS, Lally KP, Tsao K.  Using a Second Stakeholder-Driven Variance Reporting System Improves Pediatric Perioperative Safety.  Pediatr Qual Saf. 2019 Sep 23;4(5):e220. PMID: 31745523

Kawaguchi AL, Guner YS, Sømme S, Quesenberry AC, Arthur LG, Sola JE, Downard CD, Rentea RM, Valusek PA, Smith CA, Slidell MB, Ricca RL, Dasgupta R, Renaud E, Miniati D, McAteer J, Beres AL, Grabowski J, Peter SDS, Gosain A; American Pediatric Surgical Association Outcomes and Evidence-Based Practice (OEBP) Committee. Management and Outcomes for Long-segment Hirschsprung disease: A systematic review from the APSA outcomes and evidence based practice committee.  J Pediatr Surg. 2021 Sep; 56(9):1513-1523. PMID: 33993978

Arshad S, Hebballi N, Avritscher E, John S, Lapus R, Tsao K, Kawaguchi A.  Early discharge after nonoperative management of intussusception is both safe and cost-effective. J Pediatr Surg 2022 Jan; 57(1): 147-52. PMID 34756701

Hebballi NB, Gupta VS, Sheppard K, Kubanda A, Salley D, Ostovar-Kermani T, Bryndzia C, Khan A, Wadhwa N, Tsao K, Jain R, Kawaguchi AL. Standardization of Pediatric Non-cardiac Operating Room to Intensive Care Unit Handoffs Improves Communication and Patient Care.  J Patient Saf. 2022 Sep; 18(6): e1021-26. PMID 35985048

Curriculum Vitae

Curriculum Vitae