We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Obituary |

In Memoriam: Melvin G. Alper, MD (1921-2013) FREE

Ronald S. Fishman, MD1
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2013;131(11):1493. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2013.5280.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

Melvin G. Alper, MD, died on February 23, 2013, at the age of 91 years after several disabling episodes of cerebrovascular disease. Dr Alper grew up in the small town of Wytheville in the south Virginia piedmont. He attended the University of Virginia for undergraduate as well as medical study, receiving his medical degree in 1945. After an internship, he obtained 2 years of residency training in general surgery, experience that he found useful later for his special interest in orbital disease. Finishing a tour of duty in the US Air Force, he took his ophthalmology residency at the University of Pennsylvania Hospital from 1951-1954.

Place holder to copy figure label and caption

Graphic Jump LocationImage not available.

Melvin G. Alper, MD

Coming to Washington, DC, Alper built a large private practice of ophthalmology, while maintaining a continuing role in clinical research and teaching at the Washington Hospital Center and George Washington University, particularly in neuroophthalmology and orbital disease. For much of this career, he was recognized as one of the most astute and distinguished clinicians in the entire Washington area. He immediately recognized the unique merits of the just-emerging technology of computerized tomography and published in early 1973 what was probably the first study of its use in orbital disease. In the 1960s, he cofounded, organized, and led a monthly teaching program in neuroophthalmology, bringing area ophthalmologists, neurologists, neurosurgeons, and neuroradiologists together in discussions that became and remain the main feature of advanced neuroophthalmologic education for the entire Washington, DC, medical community. He published more than 50 articles, book chapters, and book reviews during his active 41-year career, as well as participated in more than 100 formal lectureships and visiting professorships, a total made more impressive by his simultaneous private practice. In 1975, he was admitted to membership in the American Ophthalmological Society with a thesis describing changes in the anterior segment of the monkey eye after trigeminal nerve sections.

Alper’s career spanned the period when leadership in American ophthalmology was expanding from its base in a relatively few institutions to its present dependence on many large full-time academic departments with multiple subspecialists. His career illustrates what can be accomplished outside of full-time academia by particularly dedicated and gifted clinicians.


Corresponding Author: Ronald S. Fishman, MD, 47880 Cross Manor Rd, Saint Inigoes, MD 20684 (rsfishman@earthlink.net).

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: None reported.


Place holder to copy figure label and caption

Graphic Jump LocationImage not available.

Melvin G. Alper, MD




Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.