About 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 pleurectomy 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.
“I come from a family of cops. Police work is in my blood,” he said. “I’m familiar with the culture. That’s important when treating these patients.”
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.”
Dr. Flores’ Role as Medical Reviewer on Asbestos.com
Flores’ experience with mesothelioma, work with first responders and extensive research experience qualify him as a contributor and reviewer for The Mesothelioma Center at Asbestos.com. He ensures the topics and content on Asbestos.com informational pages meet the latest medical and scientific standards.
Flores has served as a reviewer and editorial board member on several reputable medical journals, including Journal Clinics in Oncology, Journal Clinics in Surgery, Journal of Thoracic Diseases, and Annals of Translational Medicine among others.
Specialties of Dr. Raja Michael Flores
- Pleural mesothelioma
- Pleurectomy and decortication surgery
- VATS lobectomy
- Lung cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Nonmalignant thoracic diseases
- Clinical research
Experience and Medical Education
Awards and Recognition
- 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
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.