Every month, we feature a provider as an opportunity for the community to learn more about the great people on staff at Little Company of Mary Hospital. This month, we had the chance to talk with Matthew Endara, M.D., plastic surgeon with the Little Company of Mary Medical Group (2850 West 95th Street, Suite 406 – Evergreen Park). Get to know Dr. Endara, including why he became a physician and what he does outside the office:
Why did you decide to become a physician?
- I have known for a long time that I wanted to be a physician and entered college with that in mind. My father is a family practice physician and for the past three decades has devoted his time, compassion and care to the patients in that community. His devotion to the practice of medicine and most importantly to his patients is something that I have always admired and hoped to model my life after. In school, I was drawn to the natural sciences. Having the opportunity to work in my dad’s clinic while I was in college really solidified my passion to pursue medicine.
How did you choose your specialty?
- Choosing my specialty was indeed a very difficult decision. I knew for all of medical school that surgical specialties were of most interest to me but had not considered plastic surgery until I was in my third year of medical school on clinical rotations. During my internal medicine rotation, we admitted a patient with flesh-eating bacteria of her leg and my medicine team called the plastic surgeons to evaluate and treat the patient. Within hours, the plastic surgeons were surgically treating her infection. Even more interesting to me was that after the infection was cleared, requiring multiple surgeries, the plastic surgeons performed a reconstruction of her leg and ultimately were able to save her leg and prevent amputation. I decided to further explore the field of plastic surgery and was fascinated by what I found.
- Plastic surgery involves all types of surgery, including surgery of the skin, bone, muscle, nerve, blood vessels, etc. We frequently get to collaborate with surgeons across specialties as we are called upon to team up on cases together. Furthermore, creativity is critical for success in the plastic surgery. We oftentimes apply basic concepts in novel ways to solve problems which is very intriguing to me. Most importantly, plastic surgery is a specialty where we truly get to give something amazing to patients. Whether it is reconstructive surgery after breast cancer, complex reconstruction to save limbs to avoid amputation, or surgeries to improve a patient’s self-esteem, I feel that I truly get to positively impact the lives of my patients.
What is your philosophy of care?
- My philosophy of care is the same as my philosophy in life, which is to treat everyone as I would want to be treated. With each patient, I pretend that I am treating a dear loved one of mine and I try my best to make them feel as though they are my only patient and my absolutely my top priority.
What do you look forward to the most in working with the patients at Little Company of Mary?
- What I am looking forward to most in working with the patients at Little Company of Mary is increasing their access to the highest level of reconstructive services available today. Due to my background in large academic healthcare models, I am very comfortable and capable of offering services normally reserved for patients being cared for in a university setting. I look forward to not only continued but expanded involvement with the Comprehensive Breast Health Center as well as the Wound/Hyperbaric/Limb Salvage team.
What is the number one advice / tip you give your patients?
- Educate yourself on your condition, your hospital and the people caring for you. Strive to understand your condition as well as all of your options so as to be able to make an informed decision that you can be comfortable with now and forever.
If you hadn’t become a physician, what would you be doing?
- I believe I would have become a pilot.
What are your hobbies and interests outside of the office?
- My primary hobbies and interests outside of the office involve being an active father to my three year old daughter and nine month old son and a loving husband to my beautiful wife. Additionally, I enjoy activities such as downhill skiing and running.
*Dr. Endara collaborates with fellowship-trained breast surgeon Dr. Jilma Patrick on mastectomy patients. Dr. Endara performs reconstructive surgery on patients immediately following a mastectomy. He accepts the same insurance plans as Dr. Patrick.
The Little Company of Mary Medical Group has been serving families in Chicago’s Southland and surrounding suburban communities since 1994. Each individual physician office provides clinical excellence above and beyond traditional medicine in a peaceful, clean, and caring environment. The office utilizes the best information and state-of-the-art technology to deliver and manage care and improve the health of the community. To learn more, visit www.LCMMedicalGroup.org today.