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My main areas of interest over the course of my career have been the medical treatment of breast and gynecological cancers. Recently, exciting research advances have led to many new treatment options for cancer. Results are much better than in the past, but the number and range of treatment possibilities can sometimes be confusing to patients. It’s my job to help guide patients towards the best plan of care. That involves knowing all the latest data and presenting it in a straightforward manner, without medical jargon. Listening, treating each patient with empathy, and responding openly and honestly to that person’s questions and concerns is paramount to a successful doctor-patient relationship.
My philosophy is to deliver the best possible care by staying up-to-date on the latest research and science and striving for professional excellence, while being open to new approaches and methods. What’s best for each person always comes first. It is my aim to create individualized care for every patient that is in keeping with the patient’s type of cancer, goals, and psychological and social needs.
Specialties & Expertise
- Gynecologic Oncology
- Breast Oncology
- Breast Cancer
- Ovarian Cancer
- Internal Medicine
- Medical Oncology
Clinical & Academic Positions
NewYork-Presbyterian/Brooklyn Methodist Hospital
Professor of Clinical Medicine
Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
Education & Training
- M.D., Yale University School of Medicine, 1980
- B.A., Yale University, 1976
Honors & Awards
2002, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2017: New York Magazine Best Doctors
2014, 2015, 2016: Schneps Communications Best Doctors
2015: Newsweek Top Doctors
2016, 2017: America's Top Doctors for Cancer
2016, 2017: America's Top Doctors
2016, 2017: Top Doctors New York Metro Area
America's Top Doctors for Cancer: 10th Edition, 9th Edition, 8th Edition, 7th Edition
America's Top Doctors: 14th Edition, 13th Edition, 12th Edition, 11th Edition
Top Doctors: New York Metro Area: 18th Edition, 17th Edition, 16th Edition, 15th Edition, 14th Edition, 13th Edition, 12th Edition, 11th Edition, 10th Edition, 9th Edition, 8th Edition, 7th Edition, 6th Edition, 5th Edition
Dr. Alan Astrow is Chief of Hematology and Medical Oncology in the Department of Medicine at New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital. An expert in the medical management of breast and ovarian cancer, Dr. Astrow has always shown special interest in improving physician-patient communication, supporting patients through treatment, and addressing human concerns as they relate to cancer care.
Dr. Astrow has been practicing hematology and medical oncology for over 30 years. He earned his undergraduate and medical degrees from Yale University. Following his residency in internal medicine, at the Boston City Hospital, he completed a fellowship in Hematology and Medical Oncology at New York University Medical Center. He subsequently joined the attending staff of St. Vincent’s Hospital and Medical Center in lower Manhattan and was soon named program director for its hematology/medical oncology fellowship training program. He later was appointed Chief of Clinical Oncology at St. Vincent’s and Associate Medical Director of the St. Vincent’s Cancer Center. In 2005, he was recruited to join Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn as Director of Hematology and Medical Oncology and was promoted to the rank of Professor of Clinical Medicine at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.
Dr. Astrow was recently one of the lead investigators in an NIH-funded study on teaching medical oncologists how better to communicate with their patients about survivorship concerns. He has also devised an innovative survey instrument that distinguishes between psychosocial, spiritual, and religious needs of patients with cancer. He has reported at national cancer meetings on the way these needs influence a patient’s satisfaction with medical care.
He is the author of many research publications and other essays in peer-reviewed journals including the Journal of Clinical Oncology, The Lancet, the New England Journal of Medicine, the Journal of the American Medical Association and the social science publication, Society.
Dr. Astrow served on the Executive Committee for the New York Metropolitan Breast Group, in addition to the Program Committee. He is also a member of the New York Gynecologic Oncology Group. He has also chaired several educational conference sessions at the annual meeting of the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
He currently serves on the editorial advisory committee for the Art of Oncology section of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
At NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist he plans to work with hospital leadership to develop a premier patient-centered outpatient cancer center, with subspecialty oriented care, access to the latest clinical trials through Weill Cornell, psychosocial services, and a women’s health center.
Dr. Astrow was born in Queens, New York. He is married and has two grown children and lives in New York City.