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Dr. John Tayek

Professor of Medicine In-Residence
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, 1000 W. Carson St Torrance CA

Brief Biography:

John A. Tayek, M.S., M.D., F.A.C.P., F.A.C.N.

Professor of Medicine-In Residence

David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

Director, Community Health Plan Internal Medicine
Harbor-UCLA Medical Center

Dr. Tayek currently serves as the Medical Director of Community Health Plan Internal Medicine at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.  He received a Bachelors of Arts Degree from California State University at Fullerton.  He received his Masters of Science Degree from Columbia University where he was active in screening physicians for hypercholesterolemia and their risk for heart disease.  He received his medical degree from Wayne State University in Detroit Michigan.  After an Internal Medicine residency at UCI Medical Center, he received his Clinical Nutrition Fellowship training at New England Deaconess Hospital and Harvard Medical School.  He completed a second fellowship in Endocrinology and Metabolism at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.  Dr. Tayek is board certified in Internal Medicine, Endocrinology and Metabolism and in Clinical Nutrition.  Dr. Tayek is a full time faculty member at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.  As a full time faculty in the Division of Internal Medicine at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, he teaches Nurse Practioners, Medical Students, Residents, Endocrinology Fellows and Junior Faculty.   

As a Professor of Medicine-In Residence, he enjoys teaching and interacting closely with the Internal Medicine Residents and the Endocrinology Fellows in training at Harbor-UCLA.  Dr. Tayek attends Inpatient Internal Medicine Service, Inpatient Endocrinology Consultation Service and maintains an active Internal Medicine and Endocrinology clinical practice within the Community Health Plan Clinic at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.  His clinical interests include Normal and Abnormal Liver Physiology, Diabetes, Hyperlipidemia and many others areas of Endocrinology.  He is a Principle Investigator on an NIH study and several other studies in the field of liver physiology, diabetes and clinical nutrition. His studies will attempt to improve the understanding of the role the liver plays in diabetes, cancer weight loss and metabolic syndrome.

He has published over 50 peer reviewed research article, several chapters, and over 60 abstracts at national meetings.  In addition, he enjoys speaking to local physician and community groups on various topics in Endocrinology, Diabetes, Hyperlipidemia, Hospital Survival, Metabolic Response to Injury, Sepsis and several topics in Clinical Nutrition.

Lectures Topics for Summer 2011:

Cholesterol for Your Heart, Your Mind and Your Infection

Your serum cholesterol is one of the most important factors that predicts a persons risk for a heart attack or stroke. New information will be presented this November 2008 that demonstrates that people with a normal to low cholesterol may also benefit from treatment with a cholesterol lowering medication called a statin.  Knowing your bad (LDL) and good (HDL) cholesterol may help save your life.  The lecture will cover the current understanding of cholesterol and how it relates to your risk for heart disease, stroke and other medical conditions.

Diabetes: Detection, Prevention and How to Live a Long Life

The prevalence of diabetes is on the rise.  As body weight increases so does your risk for the development of Type 2 diabetes.  The risk for Type 2 diabetes is 30% if one parent has type 2 diabetes to 80%, if both parents have Type 2 diabetes.  Having diabetes is equivalent to a diagnosis of a heart attack.  Therefore, all diabetic patients should be on a statin medication.   Recognition of symptoms that may help the mother or father will be discussed so that parents can recognize the early symptoms of diabetes.  10-years ago, only 10% of all diabetic patients at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles were type 2 diabetics (adult onset and usually non-insulin requiring). Today, approximately 50% of the patients with diabetes in Children’s Hospital have Type 2 diabetes.  This increase in diabetes is likely due to the increased body weight and the reduced physical activity seen in our youth.  These and many more details will be covered in the lecture.

Preventing Hospital Mistakes; Improving Your Hospital Outcome.

Elective surgery should only be done on patients who have not recently had a recent injury or illness.  Some patients have a chronic condition which should be carefully evaluated before an elective surgery is performed.  Sometimes the surgeons are not aware of all the risk for surgery with regards to previous injury or illnesses.  As recently as 2006 the American College of Physicians recommended that all patients with mild chronic illnesses or are at risk for having a reduced serum albumin, should have their serum albumin measured.  This simple measurement has a very profound predictive value of surgical outcome.  Your serum albumin measurement is also an excellent marker of hospital outcome, irregardless of your admission diagnosis.   Another factor that is important to predict hospital outcome is your development of new onset elevated blood glucose.  Patients with new onset elevated blood glucose during hospital admission have approximately 5-fold the hospital mortality as patients with a more chronic history of an elevated blood glucose (such as seen in patients with known diabetes).  Lastly, when recovering from your illness, rapid reintroduction to food can result in sudden death.  These and other risk factors will be covered in the lecture.


Academic positions:

Professor of Medicine In Residene

David Geffen School of Medicine


Research interests:



Metabolic Response to Injury


Cortisol and Sepsis


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