The Pull of Peripheral Nerve Surgery
Why Dr. Tim Tollestrup Decided to Pursue a Path to Help Patients Relieve Chronic Pain
I didn’t find peripheral nerve surgery, it found me…let me explain.
From my earliest memories, I was always fascinated by anatomy. I knew I wanted to be a doctor.
I grew up on a farm in Canada. At the age of eight, I was dissecting the chicken and marveling at the anatomy prior to my mom cooking it for Sunday dinner. By the time I was in first or second grade, I knew I would be a surgeon. I wanted to do something where I could try and help people every day and the technical part of surgery really captured my imagination.
Meeting His Mentor
Fast forward many years. I had completed my general and trauma surgery and had set up my fellowship in hand surgery. I was practicing as a trauma surgeon in St. Louis. Then I was approached by a colleague who trained with Dr. Lee Dellon. Dr. Dellon is a pioneer who revolutionized the field of peripheral nerve surgery. He is my mentor and friend.
My colleague asked me if I wanted to do a fellowship in peripheral nerve surgery. I was like, “what’s that?” Here I was a board-certified trauma and general surgeon and I hadn’t even heard of this before – like virtually every other doctor in America.
Anyway, long story short, I went out to dinner with Dr. Dellon and decided to accept the offer to do the fellowship. After about 2-3 months of the experience, I knew this is what I wanted to dedicate my life to.
So why did I become a peripheral nerve surgeon? Looking back on the long road it took to get here, I am convinced there was a guiding hand that steered me to this career because I didn’t even know that it existed prior to doing my fellowship with Dr. Dellon. In other words, I feel like I was called to do this work rather than the other way around. I’ve stayed because I love the intellectual challenge and the way I can literally change peoples lives for the better, often dramatically.
If you suffer from chronic pain I may be able to help. Please call my office at 702-666-0463. Hopefully I can have an impact on your life too!
Watch this video to learn more about Dr. Tim Tollestrup and his path to peripheral nerve surgery.