Charles Wibbelsman, MD

Adolescent Medicine, San Francisco

Adolescent Health

“When caring for adolescents, you need to have skill in ’parentectomy’ — removing the parent from the room. It’s important to have time alone with the adolescent, one-on-one, so you can connect with them, listen to them and be non-judgmental.”

Dr. Wibbelsman has been a champion for adolescents since 1974, when he wrote the “Dear Doctor” column for Teen Magazine. In 1982, three years after joining TPMG, he assumed leadership of KPNC’s only Teenage Clinic, in San Francisco; and throughout the 1980s and 1990s, he advocated for more adolescent medicine specialists and dedicated Teen Clinics—resulting in more than 15 today in Northern California.

“When you look at the three leading causes of death among adolescents—accidents, homicides and suicides—they are all preventable,” said Dr. Wibbelsman. “This is an age group that can really benefit from preventive medicine, but you need physicians who can identify teens at risk and save their lives.”

Dr. Wibbelsman contributes in multiple ways to the promotion of adolescent health: conducting clinical research and publishing journal articles; writing books, including The Teenage Body Book and Growing and Changing; working with Regional Health Education to develop educational pamphlets for teens and speed-charting forms for pediatricians; participating in regional continuing education videoconferences; and serving as TPMG spokesperson on radio and television. He currently is the Chair of the Chiefs of Adolescent Medicine, serves on the Board of Directors of The Society for Adolescent Medicine and is actively involved in research.