Lara Heather Spence, MD, a General Surgeon with Camp Pendleton Navy Hospital

Get to know General Surgeon Dr. Lara Heather Spence, who serves patients in Oceanside, California.

Dr. Spence is a board certified general surgeon currently with the United States Navy specializing in a variety of elective and emergent surgeries. She works within the Department of Surgery at Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton.

Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton is a medium size, teaching hospital that provides outpatient and inpatient care for active-duty service members, their family members, retirees and other eligible beneficiaries.

A Michigan native, Dr. Spence came to California and graduated as a Valedictorian from San Clemente High School. She then received the Presidential Scholarship to California State University Long Beach where she graduated with a double major in Biochemistry and Chemistry and a minor in Biology.  Her medical training was completed at the University of California Davis School of Medicine  and was a recipient of the Navy Health Professions Scholarship. At UCD she developed a surgical program that aided individuals from underrepresented backgrounds exposure to medicine and surgery. Upon graduation, she completed her surgical training in general surgery at Harbor UCLA in Torrance California caring for the underserved.  Throughout  her residency she continued to excel, receiving Surgical Intern of the Year and Outstanding Service  as Administrative Chief Resident. 

Currently, she is a Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy and works with the 1st Medical Battalion of the USMC. As a military surgeon, she serves as the General and Trauma/Critical Care surgeon for forward surgical teams during deployment and while not deployed works at Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton.

General surgery is a surgical specialty that focuses on elective and emergent surgery for abdominal contents including the esophagus, stomach, small bowel, colon, liver, pancreas, gallbladder, appendix and bile ducts. A general surgeon performs a wide range of abdominal surgeries for many forms of intestinal and abdominal wall neoplasms, gallbladder disease, gastric and pancreatic disease. They follow the patient through critical care and surgical recovery all the way to outpatient care. 

Learn more about Dr. Lara Heather Spence:
Through her findatopdoc profile, 

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Karen Johnson

Karen Johnson is an Associate Content manager for FindaTopDoc and responsible for working with distinguished physicians in documenting their significant accomplishments in their field. Karen is a CPR instructor and is a member of her local theater group.