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Personal Statement

♦ Virtual Visit: Delivering the same level of world-class care, with exceptional convenience. 

I am a Professor of Surgery (Endocrine and Minimally Invasive Surgery) at Weill Cornell Medical College and an Attending Surgeon at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center. I am also the Director of Robotic Surgery.

I have two major areas of focus:

(1) Endocrine tumors (Thyroid, Parathyroid, Adrenal, Neuroendocrine tumors)

(2) Foregut Disorders (GERD, Hiatal hernia, antireflux surgery, paraesophageal hernia repair, Achalasia, Gastric Cancer and complex GI disorders).

Endocrine Tumors:

Conventional thyroid, and parathyroid surgery and neck dissections are warranted and performed in the majoriy of these tumors. However, with current technology and advanced imaging more focal explorations can be performed with meticulous care to nerve identification and preservation. Novel robotic scarless techniques are performed to avoid neck incisions. Most of these cases are performed in an outpatient setting at our new DHK ambulatory surgical center with enhanced patient experience and new technology. In specific patients cases can be performed with mild sedation improving recovery and return to daily life. 

The approach to these disease is patient and tumor specific and involves management with a multidisciplinary team of experts. Overall, I perform well over 200 endocrine cases yearly.

2. Foregut Disorders (GERD, Hiatal hernia, antireflux surgery, paraesophageal hernia repair, Achalasia, Gastric Cancer and complex GI disorders).

I have focused on minimally invasive approaches for the management of these disorders and has been involved in the development of techniques to minimize scars through single incision and robotic surgery.

In the realm of reflux and foregut surgery I direct the motility center at Weill Cornell and provides a multidisciplinary approach to the management of reflux, esophageal, and gastric dysmotility. By centralizing care our team has improved patient experience and outcomes. We are focused on gastroesophageal reflux (GERD) and achalasia. I am involved in multiple studies assessing outcomes in reflux and esophageal surgery.

I use innovative robotic and endoscopic techniques to improve outcomes in hiatal hernia surgery, anti-reflux surgery, paraesophageal hernia surgery, and complex reoperative surgery. During my time at Weill Cornell I have paved the way for robotic surgery with nearly 3000 cases. 

The goal is to get patients home quickly, usually the same day and back to things they value most.

Gastric Tumors/Cancers:

I have been able to perform complex surgery for benign and malignant gastric and esophageal conditions. I have also performed reoperative surgery using this technique and avoided the need for open surgery reducing patients’ hospitalization and time to return to their regular activity.

Please visit our site on:

1. Reflux 

2. Achalasia

We perform outcome studies and use novel techniques to improve patients outcomes undergoing these procedures with scarless surgeries. Moreover, I focus on the workup of patients with a multidisciplinary team for imaging and biopsies as necessary. On the research side, I also have a team of researchers and is supported by the NIH with a grant aimed at identifying novel methods for targeting solid tumors allowing for another potential pathway for improved patient outcome. 

I am widely published in these fields and have presented my work nationally and internationally. There are in the field of Cancer and Surgery over 100 peer reviewed articles and 9 book chapters.

I have been repeatedly recognized by Castle Connolly as one of the "Best Doctors." I was also named by New York Magazine as one of New York's "Best Doctors." 

I belong to many prominent societies including:

American Association of Endocrine Surgeons

Society of Surgical Oncology

Surgical Society of the Alimentary Tract

Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons

American College of Surgeons

For Dr. Zarnegar's publications, click here 

To schedule an online appointment with Dr. Zarnegar, click here

Learn more about my Nurse Practitioner/Registered Nurse First Assistant, Annabel Endean, DNP, AGACNP-BC, CRNFA .

Biographical Info

Residency: General Surgery            Case Western Reserve University

Fellowship: Endocrine Surgery.        UC San Francisco

Fellowship: Foregut Surgery.           UC San Francisco

Honors and Awards

2020 "Best Doctors" Award New York Magazine

2019 "Best Doctors" Award New York Magazine

2016 "Best Doctors" Award New York Magazine

2015 "Best Doctors" Award New York Magazine

2012-2016 Dr. Zarnegar was named "Top Doctor in NY Metro Area" by Castle Connolly

2002, Dr. Zarnegar won the Best Resident Research Award at the American Association of Endocrine Surgery meeting.

New York SuperDoctor: an Honor given to 5% of New York physicians 

Board Certifications
American Board of Surgery
Clinical Expertise
Thyroid Surgery
Parathyroid Surgery
Gastrointestinal Surgery
Adrenal Surgery
Robot-Assisted Thyroidectomy
Aldosteronoma
Pheochromocytoma
Cushing's Syndrome
Neuroendocrine Cancer
Alcohol Ablation Using Ultrasound Guidance
GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease)
Benign Esophageal Disease
Swallowing Disorder
Achalasia
Paraesophageal Hernia
Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPR)
Repair, Hiatal Hernia, Paraesophageal
Gastroesophageal Reflux Surgery
Repair, Hiatal Hernia, Robot-Assisted
Myotomy
Gastroesophageal Reflux Test
Gastric Cancer
Small Bowel Cancer
Carcinoid Tumor of Stomach
Gastric Stromal Tumor
Stomach and Small Intestine Surgery
Gastric Surgery
Retroperitoneal Sarcoma
Rhabdomyosarcoma
Sarcoma Surgery
Hernia
Abdominal Hernia Repair
Gallbladder Surgery
Single Incision Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy
Median Arcuate Ligament Syndrome
Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome
Stomach Cancer
Languages
English
Farsi
Spanish
Russian
Education 
  • M.D.
    Chicago Medical School, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science
    1999
Appointments 
  • Attending Surgeon
    NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
  • Frank Glenn Faculty Scholar in Surgery
    Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
  • Professor of Surgery
    Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
Videos

Biography - Dr. Rasa Zarnegar

Dr. Rasa Zarnegar - Minimally Invasive Endocrine and Abdominal Surgery

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No External Relationships Reported