COOKEVILLE – Cookeville Regional Medical Center (CRMC) welcomed a new gastroenterologist this summer, Dr. Suneel Tammana.
Tammana, a native of India, studied at Guntur Medical College, a premier medical school located in the southern part of the country, choosing medicine, he says, as a way to help and heal people. After his time at Guntur, he relocated to the United States and completed his residency in internal medicine and his fellowship in gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition at Howard University Hospital in Washington, D.C.
The move stateside not only gave him more experience, he says, since “there are a lot more opportunities here compared to some other areas,” Tammana said, but it was also during his residency at Howard that he found a home practing gastroenterology.
Gastroenterology involves the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and conditions of the stomach, intestines and related structures like esophagus, liver, gallbladder and pancreas. As a specialty, Tammana said he liked the diversity it brings.
He received additional training in the field through rotations at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Georgetown University Hospital and Virginia Commonwealth University. At Johns Hopkins, for example, he handled patients with complicated cases of IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), he said. He has also authored several publications documenting that time.
“We do a lot of subspecialty consults in our training, but gastroenterology has a good mixture of outpatient and inpatient pathology that I really enjoyed,” he said.
Tammana made the move to Cookeville and the Upper Cumberland in August to join the gastroenterology practice of Cookeville Regional Medical Group with fellow specialists Drs. Maan Anbari, Phillip Bertram, Joyce Bremer and Michael Zelig.
Also moving to Cookeville earlier this year was his wife, Hemamalini Karpurapu, M.D., who is also a physician at CRMC. Karpurapu specializes in medical oncology and hematology at the hospital’s Cancer Center. Tammana said it’s “mutually beneficial” to have a spouse working at the same hospital – for many different reasons.
“She’s been here six months longer than I have, so I can call on her to help me get through (and learn) some of the systems,” Tammana said with a laugh. “It’s definitely helpful.”
In his practice, Tammana has special interest in colorectal cancer screening, GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease), NASH (non-alcoholic steatohepatitis) and acute pancreatitis.
Outside the office, Tammana said he enjoys hiking, biking, traveling, watching movies and reading books.
Dr. Suneel Tammana is a gastroenterologist at Cookeville Regional Medical group, 438 N. Whitney Ave. He is board certified in internal medicine is a member of the American College of Gastroenterology, American Gastroenterological Association and American Society For Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. For more information, call (931) 783-2616.