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Associate Professor Arunachalam Ilancheran is currently a Senior Consultant at the Division of Gynaecologic Oncology, National University Cancer Institute, Singapore (NCIS).


A/Prof Ilancheran completed his basic MBBS degree in Singapore. He did his traineeship in Obstetrics & Gynaecology in the University Department at the KK Women's Hospital. He obtained his MMED (O&G) in 1978 and his MRCOG in 1979. He then completed two years of fellowship in gynecologic oncology in the USA, UK and Taiwan between 1983 and 1985. He obtained his MD thesis in 1992. His current practice includes all areas of gynaecological cancer, especially surgical management of advanced disease.


  • Senior Consultant, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, National University Hospital
  • Senior Consultant, Division of Gynaecologic Oncology, National University Cancer Institute, Singapore
  • Associate Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore

Associate Professor Arunachalam Ilancheran joined the NUS Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology in 1975, when it was still a part of the KK Hospital. When gynaecologic oncology was in its infancy in the 1980s, Assoc Prof Cheran was among the first doctors in Singapore to be trained internationally in this specialisation.

He spent 1983 to 1985 training in gynaecologic oncology at the Rush Presbyterian Hospital in the United States, Queen Elizabeth Hospital at Gateshead in the United Kingdom and the Veteran’s General Hospital in Taiwan. On his return, he brought with him invaluable knowledge and experience to the Department which had since moved to become part of the National University Hospital (NUH).

Assoc Prof Cheran initiated the first multi-disciplinary tumour board for gynaecologic cancers in the NUH and in Singapore in 1985. In other developed nations then, it was established that management decisions taken at such tumour board meetings helped in the overall safety and ensured best care for cancer patients. 30 years on, these tumour boards continue to run weekly at the National University Cancer Institute, Singapore – a national cancer centre. All gynaecological cancer cases are reviewed and discussed at such tumour board meetings, with the care for patients carefully planned and executed. This practice of holding tumour board meetings have since been adopted by other hospitals in Singapore.

A fine surgeon and master clinician in gynaecologic oncology, Assoc Prof Cheran is often consulted by other doctors dealing with complicated cases. In fact, the Department has established that all complex surgeries must be conducted under the supervision of one of the three gynaecologic oncologists in the Department, one of whom is Assoc Prof Cheran. This has resulted in a high standard of care for gynaecologic oncology patients in the NUH.

Bedside manners is a key interest of Assoc Prof Ilancheran, who is also a respected clinician educator. He emphasises the importance of good bedside manners to students and is able impart his vast knowledge according to his understanding of their needs.

In addition to his clinical service and teaching of both undergraduates and postgraduates, Assoc Prof Ilancheran supports research by providing ideas and actively recruiting patients for several research projects in the Department. He encourages all his patients to donate tissue to the Tissue Repository by impressing upon them the value of these tissues in research for the provision of better health care for patients in future.

Dedicated clinician, generous teacher, research advocate: Assoc Prof Ilancheran is an inspiring role model and a worthy recipient of this Award.

Education and Fellowships[]

  • MBBS (Singapore) 1974
  • M Med (O&G) (Singapore) 1979
  • MRCOG (UK) 1979
  • FRCOG (UK)
  • MD (S'pore)
  • FAMS (O&G) 1989

See also[]



This article was written by Roy Tan.