UTHSCSA Faculty Profiles v1.0

Bhavaraju-Sanka, Ratna

School of Medicine
(210) 450-0500

Diagnosis is not the end, but the beginning of practice. ~Martin H. Fischer

My first experience of medicine started in the footsteps of my father who is a Neurosurgeon in India. Being a physician in a third world country with limited technology and access to care, he had to work through tough situations. Technological advancements have made available variety of different techniques today to find the right diagnosis, but that is only the beginning. My interest in Neurology and Neuromuscular disorders was further bolstered in medical school by my mentors. I had the opportunity to work under Dr Krishnamoorty Srinivas in Chennai who trained under the auspices of National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in Queen?s square, London. He made me understand the role of clinical research in furthering medical care. From there I embarked on a journey to further my knowledge as a clinician and researcher.
During my masters program, I had the opportunity to work in a project on Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis in Veterans under the supervision of Dr. Donna White and Dr Yadollah Harati. The lack of ability of rapidly evolving medical knowledge to change the course of a disease is clearly visible in this disorder. Yet, the improvements in management of diseases like Myasthenia gravis and immune neuropathies have made a definite change in the lives of patients. The ongoing developments and the room for more research make neuromuscular disorders an interesting specialty. The varied pathology seen within the neuromuscular disorders like myopathies, muscular dystrophies, neuromuscular junction disorders, immune and infectious neuropathies to name a few keeps the field always fresh and challenging. This made me pursue training in Neurology and fellowship in neuromuscular medicine.
After finishing fellowship, I joined Dr Carlayne Jackson and her team at University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. I had the opportunity to be a part of the multidisciplinary team working in Muscular Dystrophy association and Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis association clinics. The care of patient with these debilitating incurable diseases is challenging yet the smile on their faces when we see them and talk to them gives you the strength to go forward in search of the magic potion that will cure their miseries. WE also developed a great research facility to offer our patients ability to participate latest research trials in various neuromuscular conditions like Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and Myasthenia Gravis. During the course of my work as a clinician and Assistant Professor, I realized that practicing medicine involves more than treating patients, I assumed the role of the Clinic Director to lead our clinic and provide efficient timely care to our patients in the current health care settings. We are developing innovative methods to train and use advance practice providers to overcome the shortage of neurologists. I realize this is the beginning of my career but am excited about the opportunities lying ahead and ready to face the challenges to become a great clinician, researcher and leader for our community.

2/2015 - Present Clinic Director University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Neurology, San Antonio, TX
10/2010 - Present Assistant Professor University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA), Neurology, San Antonio, TX
10/2010 - Present Attending Physician University Health System, San Antonio, TX