Erik Vakil

Erik Vakil



Clinical Assistant Professor

Cumming School of Medicine


Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute

Contact information

Web presence

Phone number

Office: 403.956.2441
Lab: 403.956.2800

Preferred method of communication

Admin Assistant

Ruby Leachman


Office: 403.956.2435



Dr. Vakil is from Vancouver, Canada. He completed undergraduate training at Dalhousie University and Medical School at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. He then completed post-graduate training in the United States, first completing residency in Internal Medicine at Washington Hospital Center in D.C., then fellowship in Pulmonary Diseases & Critical Care at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in Houston, and then sub-specialty fellowship in Interventional Pulmonology at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. His research interests are focused in thoracic oncology, particularly medical thoracoscopy in cancer patients, the optimal diagnostic and staging pathways for patients with suspected lung cancer, and quality improvement in multi-disciplinary lung cancer care.


Areas of Research

Area of Focus
  • Decision analysis of bronchoscopic strategies in patients with suspected lung cancer
Summary of Research

Dr. Vakil is interested in optimizing the diagnostic and staging pathway for patients with suspected lung cancer. His current project is in collaboration with MD Anderson Cancer Center using decision analysis methodology to estimate the risks, costs, and cumulative time to diagnosis/staging between different bronchoscopic strategies (conventional bronchoscopy, peripheral endobronchial ultrasound, electromagnetic navigational bronchoscopy), emerging bronchoscopic strategies (robotic bronchoscopy) and established strategies (CT-guided-biopsy, surgery). This project is expected to be hypothesis generating. The goal is to evaluate potential pathways in patients referred to the Alberta Thoracic Oncology Program. This will be a multi-step project using retrospective analyses to establish baseline data then prospectively evaluate different strategies. His previous research includes but is not limited to: the role of bronchoscopy in the evaluation of immunocompromised patients with viral respiratory tract infections, the diagnostic utility and safety of outpatient local anesthetic single-port thoracoscopy for the evaluation of patients with exudative pleural effusions and high pre-test probability of malignancy, safety of propafol in outpatient thoracoscopy, and the value of intra-operative rapid onsite evaluation of touch preparations to improve intra-operative diagnostic accuracy in patients who are candidates for slerosant-based pleurodesis during outpatient thoracoscopy.