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Dr. Raja Michael Flores

Dr. Raja Michael Flores

Chairman for the Department of Thoracic Surgery

Dr. Raja Flores is chairman of the Department of Thoracic Surgery for the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City. He is a world-renowned specialist in the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma.

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About Raja Michael Flores

  • Pleural and Lung Cancer icon

    Pleural and Lung Cancer

  • Top Doctor icon

    Top Doctor

  • Research Excellence icon

    Excellence in Research

  • Mesothelioma Pioneer icon

    Mesothelioma Pioneer

  • Team Leader icon

    Team Leader

  • VAT Surgery icon

    Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery

Get to Know Dr. Raja Flores

Dr. Raja Flores has been heralded for his acute surgical skill and his commitment to the patients he serves, providing the technical and emotional support necessary to treat mesothelioma.

Flores also is a professor of surgery at the Icahn School of Medicine, helping teach and guide the next generation of surgeons.

He has been lauded for his pioneering efforts in advancing mesothelioma treatment, credited with extending survival and improving quality of life for his patients.

He performs the aggressive extrapleural pneumonectomy and the more detailed pleurectomony and decortication surgery for pleural mesothelioma.

Flores has been credited with advancing less-invasive procedures also, helping establish the VATS lobectomy as the gold standard for certain types of lung cancer. He has vast experience in surgically treating esophageal cancer.

He trained under legendary mesothelioma treatment pioneer Dr. David Sugarbaker at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

Flores has worked closely with hundreds of first responders who have been stricken with asbestos-related diseases in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attack at the World Trade Center in 2001.

Specialties of Dr. Raja Flores

  • Pleural mesothelioma

  • Pleurectomy and decortication surgery

  • VATS lobectomy

  • Thoracotomy

  • Mediastinoscopy

  • Lung cancer

  • Esophageal cancer

  • Nonmalignant thoracic diseases

  • Clinical research

Dr. Raja Flores’ Experience and Medical Education

Awards and Other Recognitions

  • Distinguished Alumni Service, New York University

  • Society of Honorary Police Surgeons, NYPD

  • Principle Investigator, Libby Epidemiology Research Program

  • Steven and Ann Ames Professorship in Thoracic Surgery, Mount Sinai Medical Center

  • Program Director, Mount Sinai Mesothelioma Program

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Treating Mesothelioma Patients in New York

Flores believes his upbringing — his background — is one reason he relates so well to the patients he treats with mesothelioma, mostly men exposed to asbestos in blue-collar occupations.

Nothing came easy for him growing up in a working-class neighborhood near the meat-packing district of Manhattan, not far from where he practices medicine today.

“Many of them are blue-collar guys, insulators, asbestos workers, pipe fitters, shipyard workers,” he said. “I can identify with them, and they can see that I know how this disease is hitting them.”

The passion Flores has for the patients he treats is often what sets him apart, willing to do whatever it takes for his patients.

“At the end of the day, patients just want to feel like you did everything you possibly could, that you didn’t leave any stone unturned, in trying to help them,” he said. “They want to know you give it everything you have. And I do. This is not a job for me. It’s a calling.”

Learn More About Mesothelioma Treatment in New York

Publications of Dr. Raja Flores

  • Gillezeau, C., Flores, R. et al. (2019, June 5). Biomarkers for malignant pleural mesothelioma: a meta-analysis. Carcinogenesis.

  • Van Gerwin, M., Flores, R., Taioli, E. (2019). An overview of existing mesothelioma registries worldwide, and the need for a US Registry. American Journal of Industrial Medicine.

  • Miller, A., Flores, R. et al. (2018, February). Libby Amphibole Disease. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

  • Taioli, E. & Flores, R. (2017, March). Appropriateness of Surgical Approach in Black Patients with Lung Cancer – 15 Years Later, Little Has Changed. Journal of Thoracic Oncology.

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Disclaimer: Dr. Raja Michael Flores has no professional affiliation with

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Tim Povtak is an award-winning writer with more than 30 years of reporting national and international news. His specialty is interviewing top mesothelioma specialists and researchers, reporting the latest news at mesothelioma cancer centers and talking with survivors and caregivers.

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1 Cited Article Sources

The sources on all content featured in The Mesothelioma Center at include medical and scientific studies, peer-reviewed studies and other research documents from reputable organizations.

  1. Mount Sinai. Raja Flores, MD. (n.d.). Retrieved from:

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Last Modified July 31, 2020

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