Miguel Alvelo-Rivera, M.D., is a thoracic surgeon with MidMichigan Physicians Group and is a member of the comprehensive cancer care team at MidMichigan Health. This team includes medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, specialized surgeons, interventional radiologists, pulmonologists, as well as a lung health navigator.
As a thoracic surgeon, Dr. Alvelo-Rivera is dedicated to treating conditions of the thorax (chest) area, including the lungs, esophagus, mediastinum (the area between the lungs), diaphragm and trachea. Before coming to MidMichigan, he served on the medical staff at Henry Ford Hospitals in Detroit and West Bloomfield.
“I decided to pursue medicine as a career after watching a very close family member lose her battle with cancer at a very young age,” he said. “I chose thoracic surgery after being mentored by a group of very inspiring chest surgeons during my early training years. Some of them had connections to the early development of the specialty and some of them were trailblazers for what we know today as the modern era of thoracic surgery.”
Dr. Alvelo-Rivera considers the development of minimally invasive approaches to thoracic surgery the greatest advancement in thoracic surgery in the last four decades. This includes thoracoscopy, robotic approaches, as well as endoscopic and bronchoscopic techniques.
Philosophy of Care
“My philosophy of care is mainly based in that every patient has specific needs that should be taken into consideration when tailoring an approach to their care,” he said. “I also believe that we should focus not only on improving the patient’s health, but to preserve or improve their quality of life as we do so.”
Special Interests and Procedures
Dr. Alvelo-Rivera performs all aspects of general and minimally invasive thoracic surgery, including pulmonary, esophageal, tracheal, mediastinal and chest wall surgery. He also has a very personal interest in minimally invasive lobectomy and esophagectomy for cancer, minimally invasive surgery for reflux/hiatal hernia, minimally invasive surgery for esophageal motility disorders (achalasia), as well as robotic approaches to thoracic surgical procedures. He also collaborates and assists with interventional bronchoscopic and endoscopic procedures.
He and his wife Amanda live in Midland with their son Marco and their daughter Isadora. His favorite hobby is working on old sports cars and learning the mechanics of engines. These days he spends most of his free-time supporting his son with his hockey travel team and his daughter with her figure ice skating. Dr. Alvelo-Rivera aims to become proficient in playing hockey so that he can one day play with his son. He also enjoys music and playing guitar and percussion instruments every now and then.