James Passarelli, MD, is a general surgeon who specializes in gall bladder, hernia, and colon and rectal surgeries. He cares for adults of all ages, and is skilled in the latest minimally invasive and robotic approaches.
Being a doctor runs in his family. “It was something I always wanted to do, too,” Dr. Passarelli says. His father, Nicholas Passarelli, MD, worked as a general surgeon at Yale, and his wife, Marianne Passarelli, MD, MBA, is a Yale Medicine urologist.
After practicing surgery for about 25 years, he says it’s exciting to be part of a field that is always changing. “We have gone from open to laparoscopic to robotic surgery,” Dr. Passarelli says. “People who would have stayed in the hospital for a week after surgery are now in the hospital for a day, literally, and the outcomes are better.”
Despite the changes in surgery, he still sees many patients who are fearful when they come to see him. “Some are afraid they have cancer, which they usually don’t, and surgery can seem like a formidable thing,” he says. “My primary role as a surgeon is to do a good job, surgically. But my secondary role is to educate patients about what is going to happen. I like to sit down and spend time with people. Often, we talk not only about the surgery, but also about other things. The more you know about patients and the more they know about you, the more comfortable they will be.”