Department Colorectal Surgery
Primary Location Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Type of Doctor Both Adults and Children & Adolescents
Languages English
Surgeon Yes
Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Primary Location

Cleveland Clinic Main Campus


Additional Locations

Specialties & Treatments

Treatment & Services

  • Abdominal Perineal Resection
  • Advanced Polypectomy
  • Anorecal Physiology And Ultrasonography
  • Anorectal Fistula Treatment
  • Anorectal Physiology
  • Anorectal Surgery
  • Anoscopy
  • Appendectomy
  • Cancer Center
  • Clinical Trials
  • Colectomy
  • Colon Surgery
  • Colonoscopy
  • Colorectal Cancer Research
  • Colorectal Cancer Screening Strategies
  • Colorectal Surgery
  • Consultation for Complicated Colon and Rectal Disease
  • Continent Ileostomy
  • Fecal Diversion
  • Flexible Sigmoidoscopy
  • Hemorrhoidectomy
  • Ileoanal Pouch
  • Ileoscopy
  • Inherited Colon Cancer Risk Assessment
  • Intestinal Stomas
  • J Pouch
  • Pelvic Floor Surgery
  • Pelvic Pouch Procedures For Ulcerative Colitis
  • Pelvic Pouch Surgery for Ulcerative Colitis
  • Polypectomy
  • Pouchendoscopy
  • Pouchoscopy
  • Proctoscopy
  • Rectal Cancer Surgery
  • Rectal Surgery
  • Rectal Ultrasound
  • Rectal-Sparing Operations For Carcinoma Of The Rectum
  • Rectoplexy
  • Rectum Reoperative Abdominopelvic Surgery
  • Re-Do Rectal Surgery
  • Reoperative Abdominal Surgery
  • Reoperative Pelvic Surgery
  • Reoperative Surgery
  • Resection of Colon and Rectal Diseases
  • Rubber Band Ligation Of Hemorrhoids
  • Sphincter Sparing Surgery
  • Sphincter Surgery
  • Stoma Surgery
  • Strictureplasty
  • Surgery
  • Surgery For Carcinoma Of The Colon
  • Surgery For Crohn's Disease
  • Surgery for Desmoid Tumors
  • Surgery for Fecal Incontinence
  • Surgery for Pilonidal Cyst
  • Surgery for Rectal Prolapse
  • Surgery for Rectovaginal Fistula
  • Surgical Endoscopy and Endoscopic Procedures
  • Surgical Nutrition
View all 59 Treatment & Services +

Specialty in Diseases & Conditions

  • Abdominal Pain
  • Anal Abscesses
  • Anal Cancer
  • Anal Fissures
  • Anal Fistula
  • Anorectal Fistula
  • Benign Anorectal Disease
  • Bowel Incontinence
  • Cancer
  • Collagenous Colitis
  • Colon Polyps
  • Colonic Neoplasia
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Constipation
  • Crohn's Disease
  • Desmoid Disease
  • Desmoid Tumor
  • Diarrhea
  • Diverticulosis
  • Endometriosis
  • Enterocutaneious Fistula
  • Familial Adenomatous Polyposis
  • Fissure
  • Functional Disorders
  • Genital Warts
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Hereditary Non Polyposis Colorectal Cancer
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
  • Intestinal Fistulae
  • Intestinal Ischemic Syndrome
  • Intussusception
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Juvenile Polyposis
  • Large Bowel Cancer
  • Large Intestine Cancer
  • Necrotizing Fasciitis
  • Perianal Ulcer
  • Peutz- Jeghers Syndrome
  • Pilonidal Cyst
  • Proctitis - Care & Treatment
  • Rectal Abscess
  • Rectal Bleeding
  • Rectal Prolapse
  • Rectal Vaginal Fistula
  • Rectovaginal Fistulas
  • Small Bowel Cancer
  • Small Intestine Cancer
  • Ulcerative Colitis
View all 48 Specialties +


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About James Church, MD

James M. Church, MD, is a Staff member in the Department of Colorectal Surgery at Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. He has been Director of the David G. Jagelman Inherited Colon Cancer Registries and Head of the Section of Endoscopy at Cleveland Clinic since 1989. Dr. Church’s specialty interests include all aspects of colorectal cancer and polyps, molecular genetics of colorectal diseases, functional colorectal and anal problems including constipation and incontinence, perianal and perineal infections and inflammatory bowel disease.

He currently is Co-Investigator of the Collaborative Colorectal Cancer Family Registry, funded by a research grant from the National Cancer Institute. He also is Co-Investigator of a study examining the usefulness of CT colonoscopy in detecting colorectal polyps.

Dr. Church has been named to the Good Housekeeping magazine Top Cancer Doctors for Women list (1999), Top Doctors in America (1999-2008) and Who's Who in America (2000-2008).

He is actively involved in many scientific and medical societies. He is Past Chairman of the Leeds Castle Polyposis Group and the International Collaborative Group on Hereditary Non-Polyposis Colorectal Cancer and current President of the Collaborative Group of the Americas on Inherited Colorectal Cancer. These international societies are dedicated to the care of patients with inherited colorectal cancer and research into their disease.

Dr. Church is Fellow of the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, American College of Surgeons, Costa Rican Society of Surgery, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, American College of Gastroenterology, American Surgical Association and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Glasgow.

A frequent national and international lecturer at scientific meetings, Dr. Church has authored more than 180 articles in peer-reviewed journals and 22 book chapters on hereditary cancers, endoscopy and molecular genetics of colorectal tumors. He is the author of two medical textbooks and has been Co-Editor of Diseases of the Colon & Rectum since 2000.

He received his degree from Auckland University School of Medicine in New Zealand, where he also completed several postgraduate research fellowships. In addition, Dr. Church completed a special fellowship in the Department of Colorectal Surgery at Cleveland Clinic.
Education & Professional Highlights

Education & Professional Highlights


Education & Fellowships

Fellowship - Cleveland Clinic
Colorectal Surgery
Cleveland, OH USA

Fellowship - Auckland Hospital Board Group
Surgical Research

Residency - Auckland Hospital Board Group
General Surgery

Medical Education - University of Auckland School of Medicine
Auckland, New Zealand

Undergraduate - University of Auckland School of Medicine
Auckland, New Zealand

Professional Highlights

  • Victor W. Fazio Endowed Chair in Colorectal Surgery
  • Fellow of American Surgical Association
  • Lifetime Achievement Award, Collaborative Group of the Americas for Inherited Colorectal Cancer
  • Past Chairman, Leeds Castle Polyposis Group, International Collaborative Group for Hereditary Non-Polyposis Colorectal Cancer and InSiGHT. Current InSiGHT Council Member.
  • Co-Editor, Diseases of the Colon & Rectum, 2000-2008

Specialty Interests

Anorectal Disease, anorectal physiology and disorders, benign anorectal disease, cancer and polyps of the colon and rectum, cancer of the colon, carcinoma of the colon, carcinoma of the rectum, carcinoma of the small bowel and large bowel, chemoprevention of colorectal neoplasia, colon & anus, colon and rectal cancer, colon and rectal surgery, Colon Cancer, colonic neoplasia, Colonoscopy, Colorectal Cancer, colorectal cancer research, colorectal cancer screening strategies, colorectal surgery, Constipation, continent ileostomy procedure, Crohn's Disease, diverticiulitis pelvic pouch procedures for mucosal ulcerative colitis and familial adenomatous polyposis sphincter-saving operations, diverticular disease, diverticulitis, familial inherited colorectal cancer, fecal incontinence, hereditary polyposis and nonpolyposis colorectal cancer, incontinence, intestinal fistulae, intestinal stomas, inflammatory bowel disease, pelvic floor surgery, pelvic pouch procedures for ulcerative colitis and familial polyposis, rectal cancer, Rectal Prolapse, rectum, rectal-sparing operations for carcinoma of the rectum, reoperative abdominal and pelvic surgery, reoperative surgery, Sphincter-preservation Surgery, sphincter-saving operations, sphincter-sparing procedures, stoma surgery, surgery for carcinoma of the colon and rectum reoperative abdominopelvic surgery, surgery for Crohn's Disease and ulcerative colitis, surgical nutrition, surgical treatment for mucosal ulcerative colitis

Awards & Honors

  • Victor W. Fazio Endowed Chair in Colorectal Surgery
  • Top Doctors in America, 1999-2008
  • Top Surgeons in America, 2007
  • Fellow, American Surgical Association
  • Honorary Fellow, Royal College of Surgeons (Glasgow)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award, Collaborative Group of the Americas, 2004, for Inherited Colorectal Cancer
  • Distinguished Alumnus Award, University of Auckland, 2008


  • American Society of Colorectal Surgery
  • American College of Surgeons
  • Royal Australasian College of Surgeons
  • American College of Gastroenterology
  • American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
Research & Publications

Research & Publications

See publications for James Church, MD.

(Disclaimer: This search is powered by PubMed, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. PubMed is a third-party website with no affiliation with Cleveland Clinic.)

Industry Relationships

Industry Relationships

Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists may collaborate with the pharmaceutical or medical device industries to help develop medical breakthroughs or provide medical expertise or education. Cleveland Clinic strives to make scientific advances that will benefit patient care and support outside relationships that promise public benefit. In order for the discoveries of Cleveland Clinic physicians' and scientists' laboratories and investigations to benefit the public, these discoveries must be commercialized in partnership with industry. As experts in their fields, Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists are often sought after by industry to consult, provide expertise and education.

To assure professional and commercial integrity in such matters, Cleveland Clinic maintains a program that reviews these collaborations and, when appropriate, puts measures in place to minimize bias that may result from ties to industry. Cleveland Clinic publicly discloses the names of companies when (i) its physicians/scientists receive $5,000 or more per year (or, in rare cases, equity or stock options) for speaking and consulting, (ii) its physicians/scientists serve as a fiduciary, (iii) its physicians/scientists receive or have the right to receive royalties or (iv) its physicians/ scientists hold any equity interest for the physician's/scientist's role as inventor, discoverer, developer, founder or consultant.* In publicly disclosing this information, Cleveland Clinic tries to provide information as accurately as possible about its physicians' and scientists' connections with industry.

As of 11/28/2017, Dr. Church has reported no financial relationship with industry that is applicable to this listing. In general, patients should feel free to contact their doctor about any of the relationships and how the relationships are overseen by Cleveland Clinic. To learn more about Cleveland Clinic's policies on collaborations with industry and innovation management, go to our Integrity in Innovation page.

Public Health Service-Reportable Financial Conflicts of Interest. Cleveland Clinic scientists and physicians engage in basic, translational and clinical research activities, working to solve health problems, enhance patient care and improve quality of life for patients. Interactions with industry are essential to bringing the researchers' discoveries to the public, but can present the potential for conflicts of interest related to their research activities. Click here to view a listing of instances where Cleveland Clinic has identified a Public Health Service (PHS)-Reportable Financial Conflict of Interest and has put measures in place to ensure that, to the extent possible, the design, conduct and reporting of the research is free from bias.

* Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists subscribe to the guidance presented in the PhRMA Code on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals and the AdvaMed Code of Ethics on Interactions with Health Care Professionals. As such, gifts of substantial value are generally prohibited.

Patient Satisfaction Reviews

245 Patient Satisfaction Reviews

The Patient Satisfaction Rating is an average of all responses to the care provider related questions shown below from our nationally-recognized Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey. Patients that are treated in outpatient or hospital environments may receive different surveys, and the volume of responses will vary by question.

Responses are measured on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best score.

The comments are submitted by patients and reflect their views and opinions. The comments are not endorsed by and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cleveland Clinic.

Overall Star Ratings
4.9 out of 5
Explains 4.9
Listens 4.9
Courtesy, Respect & Concern 4.9
Knows Medical History 4.9
Time Spent with Patient 5
Patient Rating of Doctor 4.9

46 Patient Comments

Reviewed on Aug 13, 2019

Dr. Church went out of his way to help me and I am very appreciative.

Reviewed on Aug 13, 2019

Dr Church has the best 'bed side manner' ever! and he is a extremely talented surgeon as he always thinks outside the box and listens to his patients.

Reviewed on Aug 2, 2019

Dr Church is awesome and saved me from a colostomy after 2 other physicians recommended one several years ago

Reviewed on Aug 2, 2019

I'd recommend both dr and clinic to everybody

Reviewed on Aug 2, 2019

Dr Church was excellent

Reviewed on Aug 1, 2019

Dr. Church is amazing!

Reviewed on Jul 23, 2019

Dr Church is one of the most cared doctor. It is rare to have such caring doctor.

Reviewed on Jul 2, 2019

Dr Church is a tremendous doctor and asset to CCF. He is a great listener and extremely experienced and knowledgeable. I trust him explicitly and am confident that he is the right oncologist for me.

Reviewed on Jun 21, 2019

Dr. Church is an excellent physician.

Reviewed on Jun 11, 2019

Dr.Church is the best doctor I have experienced during the 14 years with the Cleveland Clinic. Excellent people skills and surgical skills. A rare combination indeed!

Reviewed on May 16, 2019

I am very grateful for Dr. Church's expertise and kind, professional manner with my recent colonoscopy as well as my many previous.

Reviewed on May 2, 2019

My procedure is an extremely difficult one and Dr. Church has always provided the highest level of care. I have never had a single issue following any of the 4 colonoscopies that he has performed. In addition to his unsurpassed technical skills, he exhibits a degree of compassion and caring that is "second to none". I have total trust in him and feel blessed to have him as my provider.

Reviewed on Apr 25, 2019

very much ! dr Church and his team will be highly recommended and hoping they will all be around for another 50 years!!!

Reviewed on Apr 23, 2019

We've recommended Dr Church and the Cleveland Clinic to others already and they are also seeing him. His expertise gives us hope and comfort.

Reviewed on Apr 15, 2019

*Dr. Church is great he explaining about everything.

Reviewed on Apr 9, 2019

We love working with Lisa LaGuardia and all of Dr. Church and his staff. They coordinate multiple appointments for multiple family members who come from out of town, and do so flawlessly and kindly and extremely patiently.

Reviewed on Apr 4, 2019

I was treated very well. all staff were excellent. Dr. James Church is a wonderful doctor.

Reviewed on Mar 1, 2019

I have been with Dr. Church for 19 years and I will only switch if he decides to retire!!

Reviewed on Feb 26, 2019

extremely warm and engaging physician, explained condition and treatment very clearly.

Reviewed on Feb 22, 2019

i was glad i picked dr. j. churchas my dr. he was all i expected very thorough .

Reviewed on Feb 19, 2019

Dr. Church has always done my and my family's colonoscopies. I trust his skill fully.

Reviewed on Feb 5, 2019

Dr. Church was able to see me in a very timely manner considering this was no emergency and a minor issue.

Reviewed on Jan 15, 2019

Dr. Church is an exceptionally excellent communicator with his patients. He thoroughly explains the medical conditions and related necessary procedures. Furthermore, he makes certain that the patient is part of the decision making process.

Reviewed on Jan 15, 2019

Dr Church is an incredible doctor. for years, my issues have been looked over by doctors who couldn't figure out what was wrong. I am so grateful to have been able to see Dr Church. He listened to all of my concerns openly, asked intelligent questions, proposed a hypothesis, did tests to confirm the hypothesis, and now I am on the road to recovery. I cannot day enough good things about Dr Church. I am in from out of town and he was able to get me a number of fast appointments so I didn't have to travel out of state many times. again, he is fantastic and I will recommend both him and Cleveland Clinic to friends and family.

Reviewed on Jan 15, 2019

Dr Church is an amazing doctor, surgeon and person! He truly cares and makes every effort to see outside the box when it comes to treatment and options available in every situation.

Reviewed on Jan 15, 2019

overall experience was very positive. Doctor Church was very caring and professional. very well suited for calming patients and performing difficult procedures

Reviewed on Jan 15, 2019

dr Church is the best doctor I have ever had. he is wonderful as a dr but also as an individual.

Reviewed on Jan 8, 2019

I'm always impressed when I have to visit Dr Church to discuss any issue

Reviewed on Jan 8, 2019

Dr. James Church and his staff (nurses, Secretary, Appt. scheduler, Receptionist, etc. are wonderful.

Reviewed on Jan 8, 2019

Dr. Church is outstanding. He makes you feel comfortable and relaxed. He explains everything to you and makes sure you understand.I would recommend him to everyone.

Reviewed on Jan 4, 2019

I live out of state and come back to the Cleveland Clinic so that Dr Church can perform my procedure.

Reviewed on Dec 21, 2018

dr Church is an amazing specialist! I've seen him for years, he's such a good dr, I know some day he will retire, I hope someone as good as him will be able to take over.

Reviewed on Dec 7, 2018

in my opinion dr.Church is the best doctor I could hope to find.He is caring and explains what he needs to do to insure my good health.

Reviewed on Nov 20, 2018

dr church is the most empathetic and compassionate dr. I have nothing but amazing things to say about the care I have received over the years. dr church never gave up and wanted to make sure I had the best care possible. thank you does not seem like enough!

Reviewed on Nov 13, 2018

We had a great experience Dr. Church was very through and listened to all of our concerns.

Reviewed on Nov 1, 2018

Dr. Church is very thorough and concerned for his patients. I ran into him outside of the Clinic the following week and he asked immediately about how I was doing in regards to the colonoscopy.

Reviewed on Nov 1, 2018

Dr. Church and his staff are very professional. He is an excellent doctor.

Reviewed on Oct 26, 2018

this was a second opinion appointment and I was very happy with the doctor and his care in looking at all the records and will continue to check in with him concerning my bowel issue at least once a year. Hiss letter tome was very clear as to how I should deal with the issue . Over all I was very pleased that I was able to see Dr Church and will follow his advice in this medical matter

Reviewed on Sep 28, 2018

I was so very impressed with Dr Church. This visit was a consult with him about a chronic GI problem. I live 3 hrs away and am so very glad we made the trip. Dr Church provided me with answers to my medical questions that NONE of my former GI doctors have been able to give me. He treated me with compassion and respect and was so patient with our numerous questions. I am so fortunate that I was able to have a consult with Dr Church.

Reviewed on Sep 28, 2018

Dr Church was very thorough. He listened to me and treated me with dignity and respect.

Reviewed on Sep 25, 2018

great doctor and staff

Reviewed on Sep 15, 2018

He was a GIFT from GOD to me. Was the BEST DOCTOR I ever had & I have had far too many necessary surgeries & he is the reason I can say he is the BEST. (He makes the clinic look & be #1.) #1. "*Dr. Church "the best". #4-5. I love his gentle & kind ways. So intelligent.

Reviewed on Sep 6, 2018

The doctor is very good but as far surroundings it is below average.

Reviewed on Sep 4, 2018

Great Experience, Dr. Church was very professional and I greatly appreciate his care.

Reviewed on Aug 28, 2018

Dr. Church is an exceptional individual. He always shows concern for the patient.

Reviewed on Aug 28, 2018

The staff assisting Dr. Church were very professional and engaging. They were just terrific individuals.

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