Dr. H'Doubler Receives Burson Physician Award

May 2015

Emory vascular surgeon Dr. Peter B. H'Doubler, Jr., was named the 25th recipient of Emory Saint Joseph's Hospital's annual E. Napier "Buck" Burson Physician Award of Distinction. The award is Emory Saint Joseph's highest honor for physician service and is named for the late Dr. Burson, a longtime Dunwoody resident, who was a leader in the field of gastroenterology.

Burson Award recipients are selected for their contribution to the quality of medicine practiced at Emory Saint Joseph's, leadership as a member of the medical staff, and adherence to the Mercy philosophy and contribution to the Mercy mission in Atlanta (Saint Joseph's was founded in 1880 by the Sisters of Mercy and was Atlanta's first hospital; its guiding principle is that all patients should be treated with dignity, respect, and compassion).

Dr. H'Doubler has practiced at Emory Saint Joseph's since 1991. He began working with Dr. Harold Harrison, a renowned vascular surgeon at the hospital, in 1993. "Dr. Harrison had a tremendous impact on my life. He was a brilliant technical surgeon who gave me every opportunity, and he was a pioneer in vascular surgery at Saint Joseph's and the southeastern United States," says Dr. H'Doubler.

During Dr. H'Doubler's years of service at Emory Saint Joseph's, he has worked as the director of the non-invasive Vascular Laboratory, the chief of the Vascular Surgery section, and the head of Vascular Services at the Heart and Vascular Institute.

In 1999, Dr. H'Doubler developed a technique to place an intraortic balloon pump (IABP) through the axillary artery in the chest of patients awaiting heart transplant. Before he introduced this innovative procedure, IABPs were only used for one or two days. With this life-saving technique, the IABP could be left in place much longer, patients were more comfortable, and there were fewer complications.

In addition to his medical contributions at Emory Saint Joseph's, Dr. H'Doubler has served on the board of directors of the Mercy Foundation for nearly 20 years. A longtime supporter of the Mercy mission, he has cared for many Mercy Care patients needing vascular treatment or evaluation, something he learned from his father and grandfather, both surgeons. "They would always take care of patients regardless of their financial ability to pay, and this has always been important to me."

A veteran of World War II and recipient of the Bronze Star for his heroic actions on the beaches of Iwo Jima, Dr. Burson was chief of the medical staff at Emory Saint Joseph's for 25 years, leading the hospital after its relocation to Sandy Springs in 1978. During his tenure at Emory Saint Joseph's, he also pioneered the diagnostic tool of GI endoscopy.

"I am truly honored to receive this award, because I know what Dr. Burson meant to this hospital. He was actively involved in the care of his patients and demanded the best from his colleagues, and I was fortunate to take care of Dr. Burson near the end of his life," Dr. H'Doubler says.

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