From left to right: Haidee Escobar MA, Brianna Anaya MA, Bobby BHasker-Rao MD FACS, Alexis Villavicencio MA, Courtney Pogue MS RDN, Andrea Ochoa.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ALONSO'S PHOTOGRAPHY
Given the popularity of robotic surgery today, it’s hard to believe skeptics once existed. Fortunately, for both his patients and the greater medical community, weight-loss specialist Dr. Bobby Bhasker-Rao was never one of the skeptics. He saw robotics as the way of the future and performed the very first robotic bariatric procedure in Southern California 12 years ago.
An unwavering belief
As an early forward-thinking adopter of the renowned da Vinci robotic surgical system, Bhasker-Rao — known to patients as Dr. Bobby — had the courage of his convictions. He trailblazed a path many surgeons now eagerly follow. “I embraced robotics early on because I was convinced the technology would provide better outcomes for my patients. It’s been very gratifying to be proven right,” says Dr. Bobby, who will soon celebrate 20 years of practice in the Valley.
Today he serves as a key opinion leader and educator in the realm of da Vinci robot assisted surgeries. Surgeons come from near and far to observe him in the operating room or he travels to other hospitals to train them in person. There’s an implicit acknowledgement that robotically assisted bariatric surgeries benefit both patient and surgeon.
Since surgeons remain seated while operating, they are able to see with greater clarity and to perform bariatric procedures they never would have attempted laparoscopically. A less tired surgeon is a more effective one and — as is the case with Dr. Bobby — one more inclined to take on complex revisional procedures.
Bobby Bhasker-Rao, M.D., F.A.C.S., F.A.S.M.B.S.
Support beyond surgery
Patient Jay Almer has certainly benefited from Dr. Bobby’s expertise. The Palm Desert resident recently had Dr. Bobby perform revisional surgery on a failed 2016 gastric sleeve procedure he had undergone elsewhere. Impressed as he was by Dr. Bobby’s skill at addressing the intricacies of his case, Almer was even more impressed by the care he received before and after.
“As a patient gets further away from surgery, checking in with a dietitian regularly helps patients stay on track,” says Pogue. “Years after surgery, the stomach allows room for more food, and many patients fall back into old habits or choose less healthy options. The dietitian can remind patients of their goals and suggest specific foods they may not have considered.”
“Pre-and-post-operative compliance is so important,” adds Dr. Bobby. ”We have everything under one umbrella.” His team offers a comprehensive obesity care model which encourages a healthy lifestyle, goal setting through diet and nutrition, promotion of physical activity, and the ability to help patients learn to self-monitor their personal barriers to change and strategize on how to overcome them.
Accolades and more
Nationally recognized as Best of the Best among Bariatric Surgeons, Dr. Bobby serves as the Director of the Bariatric Program at Eisenhower Health. The comprehensive program was recently recertified by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP) as a Center of Excellence. Dr. Bobby is one of very few surgeons in the country able to boast a zero-mortality rate and consistent superior outcomes.
Dr. Bobby has been named a top doctor for 11 consecutive years
Lite Life Surgery
35900 Bob Hope Drive,Suite 205
Rancho Mirage, CA 92270