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Dr. Thomas Repas: Endocrinologist

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Dr. Thomas Repas: Endocrinologist

“Endocrinologists are few and far between, most of us chose our subspecialty because we know we can make a difference.” The unequivocal passion was crystal clear as Dr. Thomas Repas spoke on his journey to becoming part of Campbell County Health.

Dr. Repas originally wanted to be a small town primary care physician. After several years of practice in general internal medicine in central Wyoming, he discovered endocrinology and went back for further training to become an endocrinologist.

Over the years, Dr. Repas has given educational presentations to other health care professionals at conferences across the US. He has been a journal editor, a coauthor of textbook chapters, and has written a column published in a medical journal.

In the past, he also was a clinical medical researcher involved in research studies relating to type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, cholesterol disorders, thyroid nodules and cancer.

“My family comes from a humble background. I was the very first person in my family to go to college and beyond,” he reflects, “I never dreamed that someday I would be teaching other doctors, writing, and doing medical research.”

Later he decided to return to focusing on what had drawn him towards medicine in the first place: direct patient care.

“My relationship with [my patients] is wonderful– it’s gratifying,” said Dr. Repas, “it’s the best part of being an endocrinologist.”

Endocrinology is the specialty of medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its specific chemical messengers known as hormones. An endocrinologist is a healthcare professional who is an expert in endocrinology and who specializes in diagnosing and treating people with endocrine disorders.

Dr. Repas is one of only a few endocrinologists in the state of Wyoming. His competence, intellect, and pleasant bedside manner patients from all over the region including from neighboring states.

As an endocrinologist, he focuses on endocrine disorders such as thyroid dysfunction, thyroid cancer and thyroid nodules, parathyroid disorders, hypercalcemia, adrenal diseases, pituitary tumors, osteoporosis, and severe lipid disorders. “I also see people who have diabetes,” he adds, “but only those who are serious and interested in managing their diabetes intensively.”

As an interventional thyroidologist, Dr. Repas performs diagnostic thyroid and parathyroid ultrasound, biopsies of thyroid nodules under ultrasound guidance, and lymph node ultrasound for evaluation of lymph node metastasis in people who have thyroid cancer.

Dr. Repas is also a lipidologist, a physician who specializes in the management of severe or difficult to control lipid (cholesterol) disorders.

“I am proud to be able to offer LDL apheresis in Gillette,” he says, “we are the only LDL apheresis center in the state of Wyoming and surrounding states. We are the smallest size community in the US to offer a treatment procedure which is usually only available in a handful of academic medical centers located in big cities.”

LDL apheresis is a treatment for people with familial hypercholesterolemia- a genetic condition that causes extremely high total and LDL cholesterol and early heart disease, which sometimes fails to respond to usual treatment with cholesterol lowering medications.

During LDL apheresis, the plasma is separated from the blood, and run through a machine which removes the LDL (bad cholesterol). LDL apheresis treatments are done every 1 to 2 weeks.

“The specialty of endocrinology is misunderstood,” Dr. Repas says, “very often patients are referred to evaluate unexplained symptoms, which are not endocrine in cause. Meanwhile people who should see an endocrinologist are never sent to us.”

According to Dr. Repas the right patient will have the following criteria:

  1. They have been confirmed to have an endocrine specific problem or condition.
  2. They have an endocrine condition which can be helped by seeing an endocrinologist.
  3. They are willing and ready to be actively involved in improving their health and well being

When he isn’t seeing patients, Dr. Repas spends his time on his farm in the Black Hills. A 4th generation beekeeper, he breeds queen bees for sale to other beekeepers. He is also a nationally recognized and international award-winning mead (honey wine) maker. Recently, he and his wife began making mead for sale commercially in South Dakota.

Campbell County Health is proud to have such a top ranked and compassionate endocrinologist serving our community.

  • Category: Campbell County Medical Group Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism, Campbell County Memorial Hospital, CCH News, CCMG News, CCMH News, Health Matters, Health News