Your Surgery Team
Experience you can count on.
Fresno Bariatrics is blessed to have three highly regarded minimally invasive specialty California bariatric surgeons on staff. The surgeons are all active in research and new technologies, and have the best available operating suites and technologies available anywhere in the world. This combination of surgical skills, dedicated resources, and state of the art equipment is a win-win combination for patients.
Kelvin Higa, M.D., F.A.C.S., Program Director of Minimally Invasive and Bariatric Surgery
Dr. Higa graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine in 1983. He is board certified in general surgery. After completing his residency training in 1988, he served as Chief of Vascular Surgery at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Fresno. In 1990, he entered private practice but has continued to devote a large amount of his time to teaching while also serving as chief of surgery for Community Medical Centers from 2004 to 2006.
Dr. Higa has performed open bariatric surgical procedures since the early 1990s. He and his partner, Dr. Boone, performed the first laparoscopic gastric bypass in the Central Valley in 1998. The two also pioneered the current technique used by many surgeons throughout the world. He and Professor Paul Obrien from Australia performed the very first laparoscopic adjustable gastric band in Fresno.
Dr. Higa specializes in difficult and challenging cases, including revision bariatric surgery. He serves as associate editor for many peer-reviewed journals and has authored many original articles and book chapters regarding bariatric surgery and complication management. In addition to his title of clinical professor of surgery at the University California, San Francisco, Dr. Higa has been appointed to the National Faculty for Bariatric Surgery by the American College of Surgeons. He is a past president for the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) and continues to chair many international conferences devoted to bariatric surgery.
Keith Boone, M.D., F.A.C.S., Clinical Instructor UCSF
A Central Valley native, Dr. Boone received his bachelor’s degree from UC Santa Barbara before attending the University of Southern California School Of Medicine. After completing residency in general surgery, Dr. Boone fulfilled a commitment to the United States Navy, including aircraft carrier and battle group surgeon in the Persian Gulf. He was also the assistant clinical professor in surgery at the University of California, Davis.
Dr. Boone partnered with Dr. Kelvin Higa in 1996 and helped develop the revolutionary “hand-sewn” gastrojejunal anastomotic technique used by many surgeons in performing laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. He lectures on various aspects of weight loss surgery both nationally and internationally. He has demonstrated this technique via live telesurgery to many national conferences and has authored and co-authored many peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on weight-loss surgery. Together, Dr. Boone and Dr. Higa have performed several thousand weight loss procedures.
He is currently the Director of Fellowship Education for Advanced Laparoscopic Surgery Associates Medical Group (ALSA), an organization devoted to “specializing in minimally invasive solutions to general surgery problems”. This program is accredited through the University of California San Francisco where he also holds the title of associate clinical professor in surgery.
Dr. Boone is Board Certified in General Surgery, an active member of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), and is a Fellow of ASMBS. He is also an active member of the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES), and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (FACS).
Saber Ghiassi, M.D. F.A.C.S., Director of Research ALSA
Dr. Ghiassi graduated from the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University after completing his master’s in public health at University of North Carolina, Greensboro, and an undergraduate degree in chemistry at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. While at Greensboro and during his Albert Schweitzer Fellowship, Dr. Ghiassi worked to address healthcare needs in the Vietnamese community there and assisted in a community-wide county health assessment.
During his general surgery residency at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, he served as administrative chief resident in surgery and was awarded the prestigious Alfred H. Aufses Sr. Award in Surgery.
Dr. Ghiassi recently completed a fellowship in minimally invasive surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine where he conducted research on how bariatric surgery can dramatically reduce lifelong costs for those with diabetes and hypertension. He brings a holistic approach to treating patients.
He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and he holds medical licenses in New York and California. He speaks Farsi fluently.