Jagdev S. Heir, M.D., D.M.D
Meet Dr. Heir
Dr. Jagdev S. Heir, a highly respected surgeon, is the director of Sacramento Surgical Arts PC for cosmetic, facial, and oral surgery. With credentials as both a Medical Doctor (M.D.) and a Doctor of Dentistry (D.M.D.), combined with training in Anesthesia and General Surgery, Dr. Heir has broad knowledge and expertise as an oral and maxillofacial surgeon.
A Board Certified Diplomate in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Dr. Heir is a Fellow of the American Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, the American College of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, the American Medical Association, and the American Dental Association. Read more about Dr. Heir’s credentials.
A Surgeon In Practice: Notes from Dr. Heir
“I began with general surgery: cleft palate, head and neck cancer, and facial trauma cases. Through the years, I have continually been driven by the goal of determining the best way to perform each surgery; and also the fastest, easiest way that causes the least amount of trauma and the most rapid recovery for my patient.”
“When I started, I did such a wide array of different kinds of surgeries, including cleft palate cases, head and neck cancer reconstruction, and reconstruction following facial trauma. And when I went to dental school, I worked with my hands from Day 1, so I had intensive training using my hands and developing dexterity. You learn a lot about what works when you have that kind of training experience.”
"What this means is that my hand skills are dependable and have become automatic over the years. This is important, because it frees my mind up to think about the specifics of each surgery as I do them. When you can trust your hands, you can do excellent work and I’ve noticed that my patients leave with less pain and shorter recovery periods. This is because they have less physical trauma from the procedure and, in the process, require less anesthesia. It’s the combination of specialties that I practice – medicine and maxillofacial surgery – that gives me that facility. I bring my patients the best of what I’ve learned from both specialties.”
Consultation and the Patient’s Right to be Fully Informed and Comfortable
“I’m constantly refining my surgical skills, learning new techniques including bone grafting and the best methodology for placement of dental implants, and learning more about how to best interact with my patients. I tell them ahead of time what will happen, how the process will go, and what they can expect."
“The patient comes in and they don’t know you and they have to trust you. They have heard about you from other patients or from other doctors, but they don’t personally know who you are. They come in and they choose to trust me because I develop a relationship with them and this is meaningful to me. Why? Because this is what’s most important…the doctor-patient relationship. I never take a relationship with a patient for granted. I sit down and talk to them and I listen. And I keep interacting with them and listening to them over time.”
“It’s easy to talk about open communication, but it’s not as simple as it sounds. Educating my patients about their options and about the procedures they choose is a complex process. They have already learned the positive aspects they can expect – that they will feel better, that they will be empowered by having solved a concern that has bothered them for a long time. But a good relationship between my patient and me also means that they need to understand the risks involved, what can happen along the way as they heal, and what they need to do to facilitate a good recovery.”
I Want My Patients To Have What’s Best For Them
“If a patient’s expectations don’t meet my reality – what can be improved, what kind of result they can expect, and how important it is for them to collaborate with me to do the things they need to do to accomplish our mutual goal – I won’t do the surgery."
"Sometimes they don’t need what they think they want and I realize that the surgery they’re asking for isn’t necessary. This is a key part of the consultation process: someone comes in wanting one thing and after they learn more about their options they have a different perspective and will go with what I recommend is best for them."
"Despite all the information available on the Internet, I find that patients don’t really know what to expect. That’s why patient education is so important. That’s what informed consent is all about.”
Why The Doctor’s Specific Skills and Experience Matter
“The wide range of surgeries I’ve done over the years – and the training I’ve had in Medicine, Dental Medicine, Anesthesia and General Surgery – has given me tremendous dexterity and knowledge about how to perform a surgery. I plan meticulously for how the procedure will be performed for the best results and least amount of discomfort.”
My Patients Know They Can Depend On Me
“I call them the evening of their surgery. I stay in contact. I want them to feel safe and comfortable as they negotiate their recovery process. Any type of discomfort is relative, and how will my patients know exactly what they should be feeling after surgery? I know what normal recovery means, and what normal discomfort consists of. No one else can know that what they are experiencing is exactly what should be happening– not the patient and not my staff. It is my responsibility to catch a problem, if one arises. They’re not “patients” to me, in the usual sense of the word: they’re my family.”