Julian E. De Lia, MD


In 1988, I pioneered and performed the first intrauterine placental laser surgery for TTTS in the world. Mary and The TTTS Foundation were the other half that I needed to reach the parents desperate for help. Here we are 30 years later with a forever bond to end this disease and a promise kept from her to her sons.

Dr. De Lia is a second-generation physician whose father was a family physician in Newark, New Jersey. His father loved what he was doing, and hoped that all three of his sons would follow in his footsteps. Julian was the one who did. He remained in this urban setting, close to family while completing his education; high school at St. Benedict’s Prep; undergraduate studies at St. Peter’s University; and medical school at the College of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey at Newark. Although he intended to take a straight surgery internship, he could not forget what he witnessed as an MS3 on Ob/Gyn and during an MS4 elective. He was inspired to instead pursue his Ob/Gyn residency studying in the program at St. Barnabas (Livingston, N.J.), chaired by Dr. James L. Breen. Although he had overtures from the many suburban private practices, the prospect of patient care (in the generalist division), teaching and research in an academic setting beckoned.  In 1983, his move to the University of Utah in Salt Lake City began a decade that lead to his life-long dedication to understanding and treating placental abnormalities. He started as medical director of family planning for Utah. He staffed the colposcopy clinic, and was encouraged to look into various lesions with the CO2 laser. Then in 1983, he had a patient with twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS). In 1988, those experiences inspired his pioneering work with FLOC (fetoscopic laser occlusion of chorioangiopagous vessels) treatment of TTTS.  As a founding member of the Gynecologic Laser Society, he concentrated primarily on methods to treat placental abnormalities.