Dr. Tim West was born and raised in Lubbock, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Texas Tech University in 1975 with a degree in Chemistry. While in school, he worked as a surgery orderly at Highland Hospital, which is now the Grace Medical Center®. “I used to mop the floors that I am operating now.” After earning his undergraduate degree, Dr. West earned his medical degree from Southwestern Medical School in 1979 and completed his internship and residency in General Surgery at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, in 1984.
With more than three decades of experience, Dr. West has had to deal with many difficult situations, but he says he enjoys getting to know his patients and their families. “It is very nice when you can do something that actually changes things around and gets them back into living the life they want to live. I mean you cannot do that always, but you can do it a lot of times and that is helpful.” When you’re told you have to have surgery of any kind can be a frightening situation. “Nobody wants to go to the doctor and I do not blame them. So, if there is some way that you can take the edge off of what they have to do, and make the experience as pleasant as it can be, that helps them get better and it helps the care process in general”, says Dr. West. He says to ease his patient’s fears, he works to build a trust starting in the first evaluation.
Dr. West is board certified by the American Board of Surgery and is a Fellow American College of Surgeons. The world of medicine has drastically changed since he first started practicing. “When I started practice here laparoscopy really was not done. Now, probably 98% of gallbladders are taken out with a laparoscope. So, innovation is incredibly important. If you do not do it, you are really not delivering quality of care,” he says. The field of general surgery covers a variety of thyroid, breast and abdominal procedures. “Conditions that I basically see are thyroid nodules, breast masses, gallstones, colon cancers, appendicitis, and small bowel obstructions.” It is pretty wide area.” “One of the cornerstones of taking care of people is that you interact with them and they interact with you and you have a mutual understanding and respect and enjoy each other. I think that is crucial to them getting better and actually you taking care of them.”