Any team is only as good as the people leading it, and we’re lucky enough to have two of the best and brightest at our helm. The Tampa Bay Reflux Center team is led by two of the most experienced foregut and esophageal surgeons in the southeastern United States: Dr. Grandhige and Dr. Tapper. With over 30 years of combined work experience and educations from prestigious universities, Dr.’s Tapper and Grandhige each bring a unique and varied background to our organization.
Dr. Gopal Grandhige specializes in the repair of hiatal, paraesophageal and diaphragmatic hernias, the surgical treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and the laparoscopic management of achalasia, and he’s been at Tampa Bay Reflux Center since 2009. He was born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Warner Robins, Georgia.
After graduating from The Johns Hopkins University with a B.A. in Biology, he attended the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor to complete his medical school. In 1999, he secured a position in a general surgery residency at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, where he completed his general surgery residency in addition to a fellowship in Minimally Invasive Foregut and Bariatric Surgery.
During his fellowship training, Dr. Grandhige gained expertise in his area of interest: the minimally invasive approach to the foregut (esophagus, stomach and small intestine). During his training he performed over 300 laparoscopic gastrointestinal procedures including many bariatric procedures, and he currently performs more than 150 anti-reflux procedures per year and is recognized as one of the top reflux surgeons in the country.
Dr. Donovan Tapper is the newest addition to our team. He officially joined the ranks in 2016, but has been working alongside Dr. Grandhige since 2012 after serving for 13 years in the Air Force as an active duty general surgeon.
During his time in the Air Force, Dr. Tapper was assigned to tours in England, Tampa, Iraq, Germany, and San Antonio. His experiences included performing surgery in war zones, as well as in humanitarian disaster areas in Africa. During his assignment in Tampa, Dr. Tapper completed a fellowship in Minimally Invasive and Advanced GI Surgery at the University of South Florida. He has published peer-reviewed articles in the areas of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and bariatric surgery, and specializes in the laparoscopic treatment of reflux, hiatal hernia, and achalasia.
Dr. Tapper is one of the kindest men you’ll ever meet, and has considerable experience in a broad range of general surgery procedures with particular interest and training in minimally invasive abdominal surgery to include laparoscopic surgery of the abdominal wall, gallbladder, stomach, colon, and spleen.
Not all surgeons are created equal, and we won the lottery by having Dr. Grandhige and Dr. Tapper on staff at Tampa Bay Reflux Center. Their hard work and character, their passion for the work that they do, and their genuine sincerity (not to mention the fact their fabulous personalities), is part of what makes our organization so special. There are no other surgeons we would rather have leading our team.