Are you having back pain with any of the following?
We understand that you are experiencing one or more of the health issues that might be impacting your back pain.
We recommend that you discuss these health issues with your doctor before proceeding with this program.
Once you are cleared by your doctor to do this program, we hope it helps you find relief from your back pain.
Welcome to the Departments of Plastic Surgery and Cosmetic Services at Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa. Effective communication is central to our relationship, so we have created these pages to introduce our practice and some of the more common conditions we treat. These resources are a good starting point. When we meet, you and I will discuss which procedures are best for you. Here you can also learn a little more about my background and training.
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Every patient is unique, so my philosophy is to consider all surgical options for each of my patients. I am fortunate everyday to be able to help my patients by doing what I enjoy: combining proven research and evidence-based practices with surgical skill. My commitment is to the highest patient satisfaction and safety. I strive to ensure my patients have an outstanding experience and receive superlative care.
I relocated to Sonoma County, California in August 2014. When people ask where I am originally from, or where I grew up, I have to honestly answer that I am simultaneously from everywhere and nowhere in particular. My family moved nine times before I left for college, so I had the opportunity to experience and appreciate cultures throughout the United States and in the Pacific countries of Japan and Taiwan. My father was a colonel in the US Air Force, first a pilot and then commander of the Special Operations Combat Control and Para-rescue groups. From him, I learned the importance of leading while in the service of others.
As a child I was drawn to math and science. My understanding of computers and computer languages was intuitive. I graduated from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill with a degree in applied science and biomedical engineering. My first job was as a computer operations supervisor. One night while returning home from my office, two would-be carjackers started shooting at me when I refused to get back into my car to be kidnapped. Realizing both how fortunate I was, and how ephemeral life could be, I dedicated myself to helping others through the application of science.
I accepted a research position at Duke University in the Department of Neurobiology, where I developed and wrote custom software to automate the acquisition and analysis of electroencephalograms that measure brain waves. I enjoyed learning the biological basis of how language is processed as well as the challenge of creating software to detect subtle differences in biologic signals. Perhaps more importantly, I learned that I enjoy the pursuit of scientific discovery, but I still wanted to see first-hand how research can help people. At that point, I decided that I wanted to practice medicine.
I moved to Florida, where I received a graduate fellowship from The Center for Human and Machine Cognition while earning a second undergraduate degree in microbiology and a simultaneous master’s degree in computer science and artificial intelligence. There I developed custom software for the Navy at the Naval Aerospace Medical Research Labs. For my master’s project, I developed a series of machine vision algorithms that automated detection of breast cancers in mammograms.
From graduate school, I entered medical school. After my first year, I was fortunate to receive an NIH research grant allowing me to work closely with a vascular surgeon who showed me the importance of the direct application of medical research to patient care. At that point, I knew I wanted to be a surgeon. I was enamored by the demands of balancing the cognitive practice of medicine, while being able to interpret my own radiologic images, and honing operative skills to perform and improve surgical procedures that affect the quality of my patients’ lives.
After medical school, I completed a comprehensive general surgery residency at Barnes Hospital, the teaching hospital of Washington University in St. Louis. In addition to my five-year residency, I also completed a three-year research fellowship in surgical oncology (cancer surgery). I studied a small group of genes that are instrumental in wound healing but can cause cancer when they become unregulated. I will forever be grateful to the patients who taught me the importance of not just helping patients become cancer-free, but also helping patients retain their unique humanity. Through my breast cancer patients I learned that some people see scars as hard-won merits of survivorship, but others see scars as a reminder of difficult times that they do not want to define how they or others perceive them. I wanted to be able to help even more.
Next I completed a three-year fellowship in plastic surgery at the University of Minnesota. While I enjoyed all aspects of plastic surgery, from reconstructive surgery to hand surgery to cosmetic surgery, I again was most drawn to my breast cancer patients and providing them with reconstructive surgical options. I learned and refined my surgical techniques to reconstruct the body using devices such as implants, skin substitutes, and donated tissues. I also developed my own techniques for using one part of the body to reconstruct another part. This often involves operating under a microscope because the blood vessels are so small that they need to be attached with suture finer than hair.
After I completed my training, I was fortunate to be invited to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. While there, I completed a fellowship in breast reconstruction, cosmetic surgery, and microsurgery. I was awarded a faculty appointment at Harvard Medical School, where I was responsible for teaching Harvard medical students and plastic surgery residents in my operating rooms. It was an amazing experience, working closely and collaborating with some of the most accomplished surgeons in the country who remain personal friends and colleagues today. In my continued research, I have published ten peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters and have been honored to speak at thirteen national and international meetings for plastic surgeons and physicians conducting research in plastic surgery. In 2014, I left Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital to move my family to Sonoma County, California.
I decided to join Kaiser Permanente, because I have long respected this multispecialty medical practice with integrated electronic medical records enabling efficient communication and patient care. On a daily basis, I enjoy working with the fine physicians and professionals at Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa. When I reflect upon the twelve years of surgery training I completed after medical school, I see how every experience has enabled me to feel prepared for even the most complicated operations.
My areas of concentration include breast and extremity reconstruction, aesthetic breast and body procedures, hand surgery, and facial aesthetic surgical and nonsurgical treatments. I strive to offer a full spectrum of procedures for each subspecialty of plastic surgery. For example, as reconstructive options for breast cancer patients, I am fortunate and proud to offer the latest implant-based choices, microsurgical free flaps, and fat grafting. This variety has enabled me to grow a complex and rewarding practice where I can constantly blend principles and techniques from the reconstructive side with the creative and beautiful cosmetic side. I am grateful to my patients for trusting me with their care and allowing me to get to know them. As I hope you will recognize when we meet, I am honored that you have selected me to be your physician and surgeon and truly enjoy the quality time we will spend together.
|Medical Education||University of Florida College of Medicine, |
|Residency||University of Minnesota School of Medicine, |
|Residency||Washington University Barnes Hospital, |
St. Louis, MO
|Fellowship||Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, |
|Board certification||None reported at this time|
|Hospital Admitting Privileges||Santa Rosa Medical Center|
State of Issue
Doctor of Medicine
|Accepting New Patients||Accepting new patients, referral may be required|
Interpreters are available upon request. Learn more at the Interpreter Services Information page
|National Provider Identifier||1548317993|
|Plan Affiliation||Providers listed on the Kaiser Permanente Provider Directory are available to most members.|