JONATHAN YELLEN
– ROSENTHAL HUMANITARIAN OF THE YEAR –

In Memoriam
ADRIAN GREENSTEIN, MD, FACS, FRCS

Professor of Surgery
ICAHN School of Medicine at Mount Sinai


Dr. Adrian Greenstein was a Professor of Surgery at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai from 1968 to 2017. He was a world renowned colorectal surgeon with particular expertise in Crohn's disease and Ulcerative Colitis, and maintained one of the busiest complex IBD surgical practices in the world.  

Dr. Greenstein was born in Lichtenberg, South Africa, where his father worked as a Cardiologist. Inspired by his father’s commitment to alleviating the plight of the sick, Dr. Greenstein enrolled in medical school
in Johannesburg, and completed his studies in 1956. He found surgery to be especially satisfying, where he would be able to contribute most to the field of medicine. He later trained in England in General Surgery and successfully passed the Fellowships of both Edinburgh and England. After four years of practicing clinical surgery in England, Dr. Greenstein was offered a residency at Boston University Hospital, and it was there that he obtained his FACS.

His interest in Inflammatory Bowel Disease began during his time as a resident in England and developed at Mount Sinai, where he began to appreciate that surgical treatment could reduce or eliminate some of the worst clinical features of these painful disorders. Dr. Greenstein was instrumental in the establishment of Total Proctocolectomy with J Pouch reconstruction
as preferred treatment for patients for Ulcerative Colitis, and was revered for his expertise in the surgical management of complex fistulizing and obstructing Crohn's disease.


In addition to his extensive surgical experience, Dr. Greenstein authored over 30 chapters and contributed over 160 manuscripts of medical literature, the majority of which regarded IBD.
His peer reviewed manuscripts have been cited more than 6,000 times. While at Mount Sinai, Dr. Greenstein received numerous awards for contributions to the Department of Surgery and the institution, including the Garlock Medal, the Master Clinician Award and the Jacobi Medallion.

Dr. Greenstein will be remembered as a loving husband,
father and grandfather, as well as a marvelous physician whose bedside manner was legendary. His patients adored him, as did his colleagues and the generations of residents and medical students that were fortunate enough to be trained by him. When people cite “The Mount Sinai experience” in surgical management of IBD, they are essentially quoting Dr. Greenstein’s work.