Dr. Dmitri Alden Named Honorary Foreign Member of French National Academy of Surgery

Global acclaim: A local surgeon gets a rare award from abroad


Photograph by Zupcu Photography

We often brag that the medical expertise in the Hudson Valley is equal to anything you can find in the rest of the country. Well, now we can go global, and affirm that our doctors are the equal of any in the world.

At least, that’s the case for liver and pancreatic cancer specialist Dr. Dmitri Alden of Rhinebeck. Dr. Alden was recently named an Honorary Foreign Member of the très prestigieuse French National Academy of Surgery (L’Académie Nationale de Chirurgie), the oldest and most distinguished surgical institution in France. Established in 1731 by the royal surgeon for King Louis XV, the Academy’s members are selected from the top surgeons in all surgical specialties. Of its current 464 members, only 13 are Americans.

“It was not something I expected in any way,” says Dr. Alden, who has practices in Poughkeepsie and Manhattan and operates at Vassar Brothers Medical Center and Lenox Hill Hospital. “You can’t just send in an application.”

Born in Moscow, Dr. Alden studied in Paris with the modern pioneer of hepatobiliary (liver and pancreas) surgery, and has traveled to France often for presentations. That connection, along with the fact that he is fluent in French — as well as English, Russian and German — led to his membership.

At his induction ceremony in January, he received a big diploma and a medal, which will hang in his office. To him, they signify the world-class care Hudson Valley residents can get close to home. “We do some really cool things right here, so you don’t need to travel to Boston or New York City to get top-of-the-line surgery,” says Dr. Alden, who performed the first laparoscopic and robotic liver and pancreatic surgeries in the Valley. “In terms of quality and service, there is nothing in New York that we don’t have at Vassar. We have the newest robot out there, all the new technology — everything is available here.”

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