"I first met Dr. Ganta a couple of years ago when I went to seminar in his office. I had been looking at weight loss surgery for several years and was getting closer to making the decision to do it. He didn't say too awful much beyond the mechanics of the surgery, but he came off as a very competent, reserved and caring surgeon. When I made the decision earlier this year to do it, I did not hesitate and made an appointment with Ganta. I should say that I had contacted others, but the office wouldn't stop mailing or emailing me. I was impressed that Ganta's office sent me mailing list stuff, but took me off when asked and they didn't push. It was my decision and they left me alone to make it. Having said that, they still had all of my information from the seminar so getting an appointment was easy.
Even though I was self-pay, I was still required to do a fitness and psyche evaluation (all done in his office) and meet with a nutritionist. I liked that. It made me get more prepared and also made me realize that I needed more help to deal with the emotional aspects so I went out and found a counselor to meet with (which I highly recommend to everyone, she keeps me in my right head space). The psychology, fitness and nutrition appointments all went very well, I get the feeling Dr. Ganta likes good people around him and goes to lengths to obtain that.
My only negative about the office is that they sometimes take a long time to reply to emails or they lose them. None of the important ones, but sometimes general questions seem to go into the ether. I had a few times that I had to send a follow up email a week later to get an answer. As someone that works mostly through email, I do wish they were a little more responsive. Anytime I need anything immediate, I usually call and they're very responsive by phone though!
My first one on one meeting with Dr. Ganta was during my consult. I have never felt so un-rushed in my entire life. He acted as though I was the only patient he had that day and was more than willing to sit there for as long as I needed to talk about options and answer my questions. He also asked me questions about what I knew of each procedure, gave me additional information, asked what procedure I thought I wanted and then asked me questions as to why. So, he wasn't there to just sign or do whatever I wanted, he wanted me to really think about what I was doing and why. At the end of the day, he agreed with what I wanted for the reasons I laid out, but he also gave me some additional food for thought as far as complications that I hadn't considered. I left there feeling very confident in my choice of surgeons and in his ability.
I will tell you that he comes off very reserved and quiet. Which kind of means when he says something, you listen because it's going to be important. His bedside manner is very gentle and matter-of-fact. At first I thought he might not have a sense of humor, but he certainly does, it's just a little dark and dry, which I kinda like. During our consult I mentioned that I knew he had a low rate of complications, leaks, etc. He said, "oh, we've had a few leaks, but I haven't lost anyone yet". It was the perfect thing to say to me because I've got that slightly off-kilter humor myself and I was a little nervous. I like that he was able to read that.
Having said that, if you need a surgeon that is all hugs and rainbows, Dr. Ganta might not be the right one for you. I wanted someone that I would (literally) feel comfortable putting my life in their hands and he was the right person for that. His office staff definitely makes up for any rainbows you are missing. That's not to say he doesn't have a great personality, he's just a little more reserved, but he listens and he's even cracked a smile and joke now and then.
I saw him once again at the pre-op appointment a few days before surgery and, again, he was unhurried and I felt like he would have been more than happy to sit there and answer my questions until I was fully satisfied and okay. I like that. All too often, doctors seem to be in a really big hurry and I feel bad for asking questions. He wasn't like that at all. I was free to ask anything I needed. I even had a small list - some were probably silly questions - but he didn't mind answering them and then making sure I understood. This does translate to him running behind quite a bit, so you'll have a wait in the waiting room, more than likely, but it's a trade off that I'm willing to accept.
He was great before surgery, he stopped in, made sure I was okay, reminded me what we were going to do. Let my husband know how long he expected it to take, made sure he had a way to get in touch with him afterwards, etc. I didn't see him again until discharge the next day where he made sure I understood all the post op instructions, made sure I had a follow up appointment scheduled and smiled and wished me well along the way.
I did have to call a few days after surgery because of nasty muscle pain that won't go away and the Lortab wasn't helping. It was after hours and he answered the phone himself. He listened and then called in an additional medication. He answered the phone himself - I was impressed with that. I didn't have to wait 30 minutes. I didn't have to explain my problem to several people until someone finally let me talk to the doctor. He answered. He handled it.
He seems to take after-care very seriously. In fact, for his cash pay clients, he includes a year of follow up. His pre-op and post-op diet is very strict and seems to be slightly more strict than others I've seen online. He did his part and he fully expects you to be accountable for doing your part. This has been true as I moved up to each level of food and beyond. I'm currently about 7 months out and have found his no nonsense refreshing. He did his part, now it's my turn to do mine.
I love the office. They always remember who I am, always smile, always say I look great (cuz I do, darn it!), and are very laid back. Dr. Ganta is always warm and inviting, he's still reserved a bit, but he can laugh with me while giving me pointers on what I need to be doing and things I can try as time goes on and this whole journey continues to take shape.
Overall, I've been very impressed with him and his office and I would not hesitate to recommend them to others (and already have!). I've done a lot of research on bariatrics in Austin - a whole lot. I can honestly say that THIS is the right doctor if you are in Austin. Do your research, look for people's experiences, you'll find Dr. Ganta to be tops in the area, heck maybe the state.
Update at 18 months post-op: Still loving this man. I've lost nearly 200 pounds. He gave me my life back and probably saved my life. More than that, he's an awesome surgeon. At my last appointment I even made laugh and got a hug on the way out. It's odd, but I want to make him proud. He did good work and so have I. We BOTH should be proud :)
Update at 2 years post-op: I'm now in maintenance mode, having lost a total of 220-225 pounds! I'm at a healthy BMI, although the upper range of my normal, but a plastic surgeon has said he'd remove around ten pounds, so that would put me right where I want to be. Life is good and follow-ups with Dr. Ganta have been helpful. He's almost always running behind, I stick with him because he truly is the best, but hopefully they will work out those kinks :)"
"I had a vertical sleeve on 6/21/11 with Dr. Ganta at NAMC. I simply cannot say enough good about this hospital. I don't have a lot of experience with them, but what I do have has led me to believe that care can vary from staff member to staff member. Have you ever been somewhere and realized that every single person you met there must love their job? That's how I felt during my ~36 hour stay here. All of the nurses and all of the staff were extremely accommodating. They were all as respectful of my privacy and feelings. They always asked if there was anything more I needed. They never acted put-out when I asked a question or asked for something. I felt comfortable and very well cared for. A few stand outs where my nurses, Patience and Holly and the bariatric coordinator, John. But honestly, there was not one person there that I didn't feel was amazing. Super responsive, always wiling to spend a few extra minutes to make sure you're comfortable and just a fabulous experience. I would not hesitate to recommend this hospital to others."