Vikram Reddy, MD, PhD, is the director of colorectal surgery for Yale Medicine and one of five surgeons who are board-certified specially in colorectal cancer. He is devoted to providing patients who have cancer or non-cancerous conditions with the best surgeries available while preserving their quality of life.
An innovator in minimally invasive surgeries for colon and rectal diseases, Dr. Reddy performs some of the most complex surgeries. For instance, he’s a pioneer in using a laparoscope (a thin tube with a light and surgical tools at the end) to preserve the anal sphincter while removing rectal tumors. This technique allows more patients to preserve normal bowel function. Dr. Reddy is recognized for performing transanal endoscopic microsurgery (TEMS) to remove lesions located high inside the rectum. He was also among the first surgeons to perform corrective laparoscopic pouch surgeries. He performs these “redo” surgeries for patients who had unsuccessful operations to create pouches for bowel contents after their colon and rectum were removed. “We have solved this problem for patients from around the country,” he says.
For this type of surgery and others, Dr. Reddy urges people to seek out surgeons who have done the procedure many times. Research confirms the association between a surgeon’s volume and experience, and good results. “Patients will have better outcomes, irrespective of the severity of the disease,” says Dr. Reddy, who is an assistant professor of gastrointestinal surgery at Yale School of Medicine.
In addition, Dr. Reddy and his colleagues put particular effort into planning surgeries. They work closely with teams of radiologists, pathologists, oncologists and other specialists before, during and after a procedure. His team has particular expertise in handling unusual cases. “At Yale Medicine, we see so much variety that if something new pops up we’re not worried about what we’re going to do,” he says. Dr. Reddy recalls a patient whose intestines were rotated in an unusual way. Though this problem would typically lead to a colostomy, Dr. Reddy was able to fix it laparoscopically. “The patient was in the hospital for four days and went home, and he’s doing very well,” he says.
In addition to treating colorectal cancer, Dr. Reddy has a deep interest in helping patients with noncancerous conditions such as chronic inflammatory bowel disease.
Dr. Reddy chose his field because he wanted to work with both benign and malignant conditions to get a broader view of colorectal disease in general. “Sometimes we can pull in a technique we use for benign patients to use for cancer patients,” he says. “It’s a good mixture.”
Connecticut Magazine has included Dr. Reddy in its annual lists of Top Doctors in the state.
Smilow Cancer Hospital, Yale Medicine