Looking for info
01/04/2022 at 5:47 pm #30355
I have been reading the forum and watching lots of Dr Towfigh’s videos for a while now. I think I finally might need to pursue having my hernia addressed and would appreciate some opinions.
I will probably ask a few different questions separately unless that isn’t preferred.
I have a right side inguinal hernia and have been trying to find a surgeon that will do a no mesh open repair. I am thin and have a low bmi currently.
I am trying to find someone on the east coast near PA. One problem it seems is that you cannot seem to access most Dr’s to ask any questions if they are part of a group or hospital system. Some offices won’t even let you book an appointment until the have all of your records pertaining to the hernia. They want imaging which I haven’t had done for this. It’s an obvious hernia.
Any ideas on where to start and any recommendations on Dr’s in the PA, NJ, or northeast / mid-atlantic areas?
Thank you in advance!
01/05/2022 at 5:09 am #30367William BryantParticipant
I live in UK but Dr Yunis seems well regarded for tissue repair. I’m not sure where in US he is though?
You can get answers from secretary or have a chargeable phone appointment I believe.
There is also a Desarda option in the USA I believe… I’ll Google it.
But I’m sure the American posters will help but this is to be going on with.
01/05/2022 at 5:20 am #30368William BryantParticipant
So Dr Yunis I think is in Sarasota. FL
Dr Thomas Fort Myers for Desarda
01/05/2022 at 5:21 am #30369
Thank you for the reply William,
You are correct, I was able to get basic info from a receptionist that answered. Others though haven’t wanted to consider my case without having images to review first. I did see a local surgeon who wants to do robotic surgery with mesh. But he was not a good fit especially after watching Dr Towfigh’s video on choosing a Dr.
Dr Yunis does seem great but is in Florida which is very far from where I live. If I were able to travel though he’d be among the top options as well as Dr Towfigh.
The other tough part is trying to do this through insurance as it seems that several of the surgeons that are mentioned on the forum don’t take insurance.
01/05/2022 at 5:23 am #30370
Thank you William 🙂
01/05/2022 at 7:10 am #30371ajm222Participant
Lots of great surgeons in that area. One you may consider is Dr. Igor Belyanksy in Maryland. He’s one of the top robotic surgeons possibly in the world, but will also do no mesh repairs. Hernia and abdominal wall expert. Great guy, too, IMHO. I used him for my mesh removal. I also really like Dr. Levi Procter here in Richmond, VA. He also used to be a regular contributor to this site. NY also has Drs. Samer Sbayi and Brian Jacob, who are super well regarded and have great bedside manners from what I understand. The former in particular specializes in no mesh repair. Finally, Eric Pauli in Hershey, PA is another highly regarded surgeon.
01/05/2022 at 9:27 am #30372
Thanks for your reply. This is good info. I did try Dr. Belyansky but the surgical group he works for has a system in place that seems to require some imaging records to be sent in for them to review prior to even scheduling a consul. They said after reviewing imaging they decide if they will see a patient. This is tricky as I have no imaging of the hernia. I’d think it would be an easy case for him though. I am not giving up, might see what’s involved with getting imaging.
I also just learned of Dr. Pauli in Hershey. It turns out that he is a colleague of Dr. Horne who was in one of Dr. Towfigh’s videos. He is booking pretty far out but not off the table as they will take new patients. They also want records but might be willing to accept just notes from physical exam.
If Richmond weren’t so far I would be looking into Dr. Procter as I have read about him and have seen some of his posts here.
Haven’t looked into Dr. Jacob yet but I will.
As for Dr. Sbayi, I did watch Dr. Towfigh’s video with him featured and he seems great except I am not sure how I feel about the cutting of the cremaster muscle. It didn’t seem like Dr. Towfigh would do that and I have read of others questioning it on this site. Also, when I look for reviews on Dr. Sbayi I don’t see many good ones but I know that doesn’t necessarily give a clear representation.
Was it difficult for you to get an appointment with Dr Belyansky?
01/05/2022 at 9:50 am #30373
01/05/2022 at 9:51 am #30374
Here’s the page about repair methods.
01/05/2022 at 10:29 am #30375
Thank you Good intentions,
I did call them and they said the cost is $9000-$12000. My insurance will not cover it if done there unfortunately.
01/05/2022 at 10:56 am #30376
That’s expensive. Too bad.
When you are doing the calculations, don’t overlook that your insurance will probably not cover all of the costs that you assumed it would. You might pay a percentage of some procedures, there’s probably a deductible, some things just don’t get billed to insurance, they’ll bill you directly first, some things just won’t be covered at all, like maybe they had to use an outside the system anesthesiologist. All of my surgeries were more expensive than I expected/calculated, and I had good insurance plans and tried to figure out the cost beforehand. There will be many uncovered small charges that add up to a large number.
It’s very difficult to know how much a procedure will cost before it’s done. In short, don’t assume that going with your insurance coverage will be substantially cheaper than paying directly. Especially if you have the procedure done at a large clinic or hospital. The health care “system” is made up of inflated costs and negotiations/agreements between large corporations. Even just a small percentage of those inflated negotiating costs applied directly to the patient can add up to a large number.
01/05/2022 at 11:55 am #30378
Yes good points. This is something I am trying to be mindful of as well.
01/05/2022 at 12:15 pm #30380ajm222Participant
My first appt with him was super easy to set up. This was back maybe in the first half of 2019, and he and the hospital do things a little differently now. But I think I sent a letter with no expectations one desperate day, and then got a call just a week later from his office and an appt scheduled just a few days after that in-person with him. Turns out they accepted my insurance even though I was out of state. I thought I didn’t send any imaging to him, but now that I think about it perhaps I did because I believe I remember him saying my mesh looked fine. Can’t remember if that was the initial appt or a later one, but probably the first. So I am guessing I sent the letter along with a CD. I think it was a CT scan. But no trouble at all getting that first appt. I have since referred a couple of folks to him from other states and despite the hospital changing some of their policies and him often saying he was getting out of the mesh removal game and focusing primarily on complex abdominal wall repair, he has taken both of them. And I presume he will still occasionally do simple hernia repairs as well.
- This reply was modified 2 weeks, 2 days ago by ajm222.
01/05/2022 at 1:48 pm #30385
Thank you! That is encouraging. I definitely won’t rule him out yet. I enjoyed the video with him being interviewed by Dr. Towfigh. That is one great advantage that Dr. Towfigh helps us gain, she enables people to get a glimpse of different hernia surgeon’s perspectives and techniques. It is a huge head start when selecting a Dr.
Very grateful for the response’s that have come in so far as it is helping narrow down the options.
01/07/2022 at 5:30 pm #30396
01/08/2022 at 1:28 pm #30399
Thank you! I will look into that info as well.
01/11/2022 at 12:17 pm #30403PFParticipant
Not sure if the Cleveland Clinic Main Campus is too far away for you, but they do specialize in hernia and abdominal wall reconstruction. Dr Rosen and Dr Krpata are there and both of them have been a guest with Dr Towfigh. You can watch those interviews and also look for other videos with them, and get a feel for their personality. Insurance will most likely be accepted for those who have mentioned they need somewhere that takes it.
01/11/2022 at 2:05 pm #30404
Thank you PF, I think it might be a bit too far but I will still do some research. I am curious if those Dr’s do pure tissue repair. I will have to check out those videos as well.
I appreciate all of the info that you all have been kind enough to provide.
01/11/2022 at 4:24 pm #30405PFParticipant
Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Mail Code A100
9500 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44195
my.clevelandclinic.org. You can look at the doctors info here.
01/12/2022 at 7:38 am #30406
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