Willie Underwood, III, MD, MSci, MPH, was appointed to the faculty at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center (RPCI) in 2008. He serves in the Department of Urologic Oncology, providing clinical care to prostate cancer patients and their families, and in the Office of Cancer Health Disparities Research where his academic efforts focus on methods to improve the early detection and treatment of prostate cancer in medically underserved New Yorkers.
Dr. Underwood came to RPCI from Wayne State University and Karmanos Cancer Institute, Detroit, MI, where he served as Assistant Professor in the Department of Urology. Dr. Underwood earned his medical degree in 1994 from the State University of New York at Syracuse, Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY and completed residency training in General Surgery in 1996 and Urology in 2000 at the University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, CT. He completed the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program in 2002 at the University of Michigan. He earned a Masters in Public Health (MPH) in Health Management and Policy in 2004 from the School of Public Health at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and then served as Assistant Professor in Urology from 2002 to 2005.
Dr. Underwood is the Co- Principle Investigator on two National Institute of Health funded research grants entitled “Race, Prostate Cancer Treatment, and Treatment Decision Difficulty and Regret” (Dr. Heather Orom Co-PI) and the National Cancer Institute Community Network Partnership grant entitled “Western New York Cancer Coalition (WNYC2) Center to Reduce Disparities” (Dr. Deborah Erwin Co-PI).
Dr. Underwood works to improve the health and the healthcare of all Americans through his clinical care, research, and public policy advocacy efforts. He was appointed by the American Medical Association Board of Trustees Council of Legislation which serves to advise and provide input the AMA BOT regarding all healthcare legislation at the federal and state levels. He was appointed to the American Urology Association's Health Policy Council and the Legislative Affair Committee which serves to advise the AUA on all health policy and legislation that may impact urologic health outcomes and urologic healthcare delivery and training. In the above roles, Dr. Underwood meets with U.S. Members of Congress and their staff to discuss healthcare legislation several times a year and participates in national radio shows and sometimes local television to educate the public regarding various healthcare issues. Dr Underwood also works to improve the health and healthcare internationally. He serves as a Member of the Board of IVUMed which is committed to making quality urological care available to people worldwide. In fulfilling this mission, IVUMed provides medical and surgical education to physicians and nurses and treatment to thousands of suffering children and adults.
Additionally, Dr. Underwood serves on the Board of Drop In Nation. The mission of Drop In Nation is to serve out of school youth as well as unemployed or underemployed adults. We accomplish this by providing holistic education, which includes life skills, and career-training opportunities in a collaborative community based setting.
Dr. Underwood’s efforts to improve the health and healthcare of the poor and disenfranchised extends beyond his highly funded research. He is known nationally for his involvement in healthcare policy and legislation. Also, he is a member of the American Medical Association’s Council of Legislation and is Chair of the Erie County Medical Society's Legislative Committee. Dr. Underwood has represented the American Urological Association and the American Medical Association on Capitol Hill regarding healthcare policies and legislation and potential impact on healthcare delivery for all Americans. Dr. Underwood, with a team of Nigerian Surgeons, performed the first reported radical prostatectomy in Nigeria.
Dr. Underwood is a member of the American Medical Association, the American Urology Association, American Association of Clinical Urologists, and the National Medical Association.
He has authored and co-authored several peer reviewed publications, books chapters and abstracts regarding kidney, bladder and prostate cancer care and outcomes, as well various healthcare disparities topics.
- Underwood W, Kim HL. Intermediate-term oncological efficacy of laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection for non-seminomatous germ cell testicular cancer. BJU international 2012; 1092:281-285
- Penner LA, Eggly S, Griggs JJ, Underwood W, Orom H, Albrecht TL. Life-threatening disparities: The treatment of black and white cancer patients. Journal of social issues 2012; 682:328-357
- Brewer K, O'Malley RL, Hayn M, Safwat MW, Kim H, Underwood W 3rd, Schwaab T. Perioperative and renal function outcomes of minimally invasive partial nephrectomy for t(1b) and t(2a) kidney tumors.Journal of endourology 2012; 263:244-248
- O'Malley RL, Hayn MH, Hellenthal NJ, Kim HL, Underwood W 3rd, Schwaab T. Safety and outcomes of surgical treatment of renal cell carcinoma in the elderly. Canadian journal of urology 2012; 191:6111-6117
- Ademuyiwa FO, Edge SB, Erwin DO, Orom H, Ambrosone CB, Underwood W 3rd. Breast cancer racial disparities: unanswered questions. Cancer research 2011; 713:640-644
- O'Malley RL, Brewer KA, Hayn MH, Kim HL, Underwood W 3rd, Pili R, Schwaab T. Impact of cytoreductive nephrectomy on eligibility for systemic treatment and effects on survival: are surgical complications or disease related factors responsible? . Urology 2011; 783:595-600
- Ross L, Dark T, Orom H, Underwood W, Anderson-Lewis C, Johnson J, Erwin DO. Patterns of information behavior and prostate cancer knowledge among African-American men. Journal of cancer education2011; 264:708-716
- Hayn MH, Orom H, Shavers VL, Sanda MG, Glasgow M, Mohler JL, Underwood III W. Racial/ethnic differences in receipt of pelvic lymph node dissection among men with localized/regional prostate cancer. Cancer 2011; 11720:4651-4658
- Hayn MH, Schwaab T, Underwood W, Kim HL. RENAL nephrometry score predicts surgical outcomes of laparoscopic partial nephrectomy. BJU international 2011; 1086:876-881
- Kapoor DA, Zimberg SH, Ohrin LM, Underwood III W, Olsson CA. Utilization trends in prostate cancer therapy. Journal of urology 2011; 1863:860-864
- Underwood W , Orom H , Poch M , West BT , Lantz PM , Chang SS , Fowke JH. Multiple physician recommendations for prostate cancer treatment: a Pandora's box for patients?. Canadian journal of urology 2010; 175:5346-5354
- Orom H, Kiviniemi MT, Underwood III W, Ross L, Shavers VL. Perceived cancer risk: why is it lower among nonwhites than whites?. Cancer epidemiology, biomarkers and prevention 2010; 193:746-754
- Hellenthal NJ, Underwood W, Penetrante R, Litwin A, Zhang S, Wilding GE, Teh BT, Kim HL. Prospective clinical trial of preoperative sunitinib in patients with renal cell carcinoma. Journal of urology 2010;1843:859-864
- Elshaikh MA, Underwood W, Soto DE. Androgen deprivation therapy for patients with prostate carcinoma and Parkinson's disease: case report and review of literature. Canadian journal of urology2009; 161:4495-4497
- Guru KA, Menon M, Mohler JL, Wilding G, Underwood W, Glasgow M, Bienko M, Piacente P, Chandrasekhar R, Hussain A, Peabody JO. Current status of robot-assisted surgery in urology: a multi-national survey of 297 urologic surgeons. Canadian journal of urology 2009; 164:4736-4741
- Schwartz K, Powell IJ, Underwood III W, George J, Yee C, Banerjee M. Interplay of race, socioeconomic status, and treatment on survival of patients with prostate cancer. Urology 2009; 746:1296-1302
- Orom H, Penner LA, West BT, Downs TM, Rayford W, Underwood W. Personality predicts prostate cancer treatment decision-making difficulty and satisfaction. Psycho-oncology 2009; 183:290-299
- Shavers VL, Underwood W, Moser RP. Race/ethnicity and the perception of the risk of developing prostate cancer. American journal of preventive medicine 2009; 371:64-67
- Shavers VL, Underwood III W, Moser RP. Race/ethnicity, risk perception, and receipt of prostate-specific antigen testing. Journal of the National Medical Association 2009; 1017:698-704
- Orom H, Cote ML, Gonzalez HM, Underwood III W, Schwartz AG. Family history of cancer: is it an accurate indicator of cancer risk in the immigrant population? . Cancer 2008; 1122:399-406