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Jordan Swanson

Jordan W. Swanson, MD, MSC

  • Plastic Surgery
Languages Spoken:
  • English
  • Spanish

Jordan Swanson, M.D., MSc, is a craniofacial and pediatric plastic surgeon who has been on medical staff at Shriners Children's Philadelphia since 2018. He currently performs a large volume of full-spectrum cleft procedures annually, including cleft lip and palate repair, speech surgery, alveolar bone grafting, septorhinoplasty and orthognathic surgery. Prior to accepting his current appointment in Philadelphia, he was a cleft surgeon at Shriners Children's Pasadena.

He focuses clinically on achieving optimal function and appearance of the face and head, and treats patients with cleft lip and palate, craniofacial and other congenital, acquired and traumatic conditions. He specializes in cleft lip and palate repair, cranial vault and facial reconstruction, craniomaxillofacial distraction osteogenesis, rhinoplasty, otoplasty and maxillo-mandibular (orthognathic) advancement, microsurgery, as well as minor pediatric plastic surgical procedures. In consultations and surgery, he brings attention to anticipating growth and development, striving to optimize treatment timing and procedure selection accordingly.

Dr. Swanson's innovation and research initiatives are focused principally on how surgical care can be better adapted to children in low-resource settings, through design of clinical devices and techniques, locally-driven leadership and teams, and reorienting care pathways within local contexts and resources. In parallel, these initiatives are also generating insight into less-invasive, patient-directed advances for surgical care delivery in other settings. Dr. Swanson previously lived and worked in Nicaragua, and was the primary investigator of the Cirugia Para el Pueblo pilot program, implemented by Operation Smile in partnership with the Nicaraguan Ministry of Health to advance the access to and impact of rural surgical care in Nicaragua. He has lectured and led surgical training programs in Latin America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and is a faculty advisor to the Penn Global Surgery Group.

Dr. Swanson studied the history of science at Harvard College and trained as a physician at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He trained as a plastic surgeon at the University of Washington and Seattle Children's Hospital, and completed his craniofacial surgery fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. He was also the recipient of the Tsao Fellowship in global surgery, and holds an MSc in international development management from the London School of Economics.

Dr. Swanson also practices at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia as part of the cleft and craniofacial teams, and is on faculty at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association, the editor of the forthcoming textbook Global Cleft Care for Low-Resource Settings, and has authored 80 scientific articles, primarily in cleft and craniofacial surgery.

Pediatric Care


More About Me

Board Certifications
  • American Board of Plastic Surgery, Plastic Surgery, Plastic Surgery - General
Education and Training

Medical Education
John Hopkins University
Baltimore, MD

The University of Washington School of Medicine
Seattle, WA
United States of America

University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA
United States of America

University of Southern California
Los Angeles, CA

Academic Positions and Locations

University of Pennsylvania Hospital
Assistant Professor

Leadership and Memberships
  • American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association
  • American Society of Craniofacial Surgeons
  • International Society of Craniofacial Surgeons
Editorial Positions
  • Active Editor, Journal of Craniofacial Surgery
  • Reviewer, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Awards and Honors
  • 2019, American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons CRANIO Traveling Fellow
  • 2017, Young Investigator Scholarship, International Cleft Congress
  • 2015, Tsao Fellow in Global Surgery


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