NEWBERRY — Newberry County Memorial Hospital is welcoming a little bit of Hawaii to its hospital staff by welcoming Dr. Conrad Manayan as its newest general surgeon.
Originally from Honolulu, Hawaii, Manayan’s story is a testament of someone who started at the bottom and worked his way up. Manayan lived in Hawaii until 1979 where he washed dishes, waited tables, did construction work and even sewed shoes.
“I thought I wanted to go to dental school, but I realized I didn’t want to mess with teeth and so I decided to go into medicine,” said Manayan.
Manayan was inspired to become a doctor by both family influences and general interest in the field. With a father and aunt who were both doctors and a younger brother who is a doctor, Manayan said there was a family precedence.
“Some people like to be athletic. Some like to be artsy. Well, for me I thought that this was just my calling after trying everything else. Maybe I can do all of that later when I retire, but for now I want to try something else,” said Manayan.
Manayan put in around 10 years of of education to get where he is today. Manayan attended Creighton University School of Medicine and went to medical school at the University of New England College of Medicine in Biddeford, Maine. He completed his residency at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Horizon Hospital in Farrell, Pa., and is certified by the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery.
Manayan can perform minimally invasive laparascopic surgery for colon cancer, diverticulitis, bowel obstruction, hernia repair, gallbladder disease and appendectomy plus advanced techniques for management of breast cancer, breast biopsies and surgery, resection of skin cancer, thyroid surgery, upper endoscopy, colonoscopy and laser procedures.
“When people see the word ‘general’ they think of a family doctor. A good way to look at it is, general surgeons in the old days did everything before there were specialties. Now, it’s kind of like you have a doctor for the left hand a a doctor for the right hand, meaning to say you have a lung doctor, a kidney doctor, etc., and they call them specialists. We can do a lot of those things, but they can’t do what we do,” said Manayan.
Manayan is slowly transitioning to the small town atmosphere of Newberry.
“There aren’t any beaches here. Although the beach is close by, I like the warm weather and being outside. People are friendly here and I think that’s a nice mixture,” said Manayan.
Manayan said the hardest part of his job is accommodating people even when not on call.
“Sometimes you get called when you’re not on call or someone says ‘Hey Doc, I’ve got this going on’ and you plan on doing something else. That’s hard to say in a small town because everybody expects you to live up to that expectation regardless of your personal life,” said Manayan. “As a surgeon, it’s a little different than family doctors because we’re less prominent, meaning to say there’s less of us to go around to take care of that kind of stuff or otherwise you would have to go somewhere else.”
Manayan said he wants to be able to say he made a difference while he is with NCMH. Manayan’s wife, a nurse, dog rescurer, and furniture refinisher, is in Tennessee waiting for their house there to sell.
Reach Kelly Duncan at 803-768-3123 ext. 1868 or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.