Renowned mesothelioma surgeon dead at 65

31 Aug 2018 by under News

 Renowned mesothelioma surgeon dead at 65World renowned thoracic surgeon and researcher Dr. David Sugarbaker has died. He was 65.

Dr. Sugarbaker spent nearly 30 years advancing the treatment of pleural mesothelioma, and is recognized for developing surgical techniques that lowered the death rate from the removal of lung and esophageal tumors. He was perhaps the world’s leading specialist on mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs, abdomen and heart and is caused by exposure.

Dr. Sugarbaker taught surgery at Harvard Medical School before becoming director of the Lung Institute at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and then Chief of Thoracic Surgery in the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. While there, he built the International Mesothelioma Program, now one of the largest mesothelioma treatment and research programs in the world.

“I vividly remember searching for an expert when Alan was diagnosed in 2003,” said Linda Reinstein, co-founder of the nonprofit Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO), in an open letter on the organization’s website. Alan is her late husband. “At that time, I only knew of a handful of thoracic surgeons and oncologists specializing in treating mesothelioma. Of course, Dr. Sugarbaker was on the top of my list. During the past 15 years, countless patients have sung the praises of Dr. Sugarbaker and are monumentally grateful for his expert care.”

His death brought an outpouring of condolences from mesothelioma advocacy groups like ADAO and the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (Meso Foundatoin).

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Dr. David Sugarbaker, a beloved mesothelioma surgeon and researcher,” the MESO Foundation posted on its website. “He leaves a huge void in the mesothelioma community, especially among the many patients whose lives he has impacted.”

Meso Foundation

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