Dr. Cristina (Tina) Tarantola is originally from Palm Bay, Florida. Dr. Tarantola attended the University of Florida in Gainesville, where she earned a B.S. in Microbiology and Cell Science with honors. She then attend the University of Florida, College of Medicine where she served as class president, and graduated with research honors, highest academic honors, and was inducted into Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society. During her second year of medical school, her sister was diagnosed with melanoma. This inspired her interest in cancer research and her career as a dermatologist with a special focus on the treatment of skin cancer. During this time she was awarded a National Institutes of Health research grant, and used this to fund her research for patients with cancer of the head and neck. Her work won an award from the American Medical Association later that year.
Following her graduation from medical school, she completed her dermatology residency and surgical fellowship at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Her surgical fellowship included training in the removal of aggressive and complicated skin cancers, Mohs surgery, reconstructive surgery, medical treatment of venous disease, dermabrasion, and cosmetic laser treatments. During that time she completed research on skin cancer surgery and an aggressive form of skin cancer, Merkel cell carcinoma. She was invited to present her research in Paris, France; Chicago, Illinois; and New York City. Her work was published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. After completing her fellowship in 2010, she held an Assistant Professor position as a surgeon and faculty member for Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis before deciding to move closer to her family in Florida. She enjoys teaching, and following her return to Florida she has served as visiting faculty at the University of Florida Department of Dermatology where she performed Mohs and reconstructive surgery.
She lives in Florida with her husband, Dr. Ryan Tarantola, who serves the area as an Ophthalmologist and Vitreoretinal Surgeon with Retina Specialty Institute. They are happy to be in Florida. The sister who inspired her is alive and well in Colorado.
Dr. Tarantola is Certified by the American Board of Dermatology. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, and a fellow of the American College of Mohs Surgery. She is a member of the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation.