Dr. De Jesus was born and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico. “My Dad is a doctor, my older brother’s a doctor, my middle brother is a dentist, it’s kind of like the family business,” Dr. De Jesus had told me jokingly. After doing so well in Biology, medical school was the next logical step. He always did well at school and college was not different. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Puerto Rico Medical School in 2002. Completed General Surgery Training at the University of Puerto Rico in 2008. Completed comprehensive training in Vascular and Endovascular Surgery at the University of South Florida, Tampa in 2010. Dr. De Jesus has achieved the highest honors in both clinical as well as academic research.
The plan was always to move back to Puerto Rico because there are very few specialists on the island and there’s a huge need. “I worked as a vascular surgeon in San Juan for two years, this was during the recession and a peak of crime and social injustices. It wasn’t safe to keep my family there. Looking for a job back in Florida, they arrived in Florida and it was a perfect fit. We moved here in 2012 and never left. This is our home now.”
Dr. De Jesus knew he was going to be a surgeon the first time he walked into an operating room. “In my first year of rotation, I stepped into an operating room, I knew that’s what I was going to do for the rest of my life.” He found that he liked the challenge of vascular surgery, and it was very gratifying. At the time, it wasn’t a specialty that was very well developed in the islands. That’s why I chose Tampa. “I can’t tell you how grateful I am that they gave me a chance and trained me.”
Being a vascular surgeon feels like a blessing to Dr. De Jesus. “When people come in, with something affecting their quality of life, to be able to take care of them and treat them and then down the road, see them walk better or feel better or enjoy their life more, because of something that not only I did, but my staff did, is an amazing feeling.” He is grateful that he has the ability, along with his staff, to help people enjoy their lives more.
They have no plans to move back to Puerto Rico anymore, he and his family love Lakeland. “I like that it’s a small town, family oriented, and I’m impressed with the strong family values that this community has. It’s a very Christian community and that’s very important to us. We love our church and we love Lakeland Christian School. We feel right at home. We lived in Puerto Rico for basically our whole lives, and to come here and feel like this is home, that’s significant to us.”
Dr. De Jesus has just moved into a new state-of-the-art facility. “This is where I want to continue building my practice, maybe expand but stay here , grow old here and retire here. This is where I want to stay. I want to give back to the community that has given me so much.” Dr. De Jesus is the only board-certified doctor for general and vascular surgery in Lakeland.
Vein & Vascular Experts
5907 Hillside Heights Dr.
Lakeland, FL 33812