Celebrating the practice’s one-year anniversary this June, Dr. Agena intentionally keeps his practice small so that he can personally connect with his patients throughout all stages of their reproductive lives. For new patients, especially for parents with daughters coming in for their first visit, he believes it is important to have a one-on-one consultation to help the patient (and parents) get to know him, express their concerns and feel at ease. This level of respect and empathy is given to every patient no matter what their needs. “Many times I will continue to assess a patient’s situation and check in on them between visits,” says Dr. Agena.
The Louisiana native was born in Chalmette to an engineer father and a stay-at-home mother and grew up living in Africa, the Caribbean, South America, West Virginia, and back to his home state to graduate from the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA) in Natchitoches. A Northshore resident since 2006, Dr. Agena now works permanently in his Madisonville office after commuting for several years to Hammond and calls Covington home with his wife, Dee and their family of three children: Landon, age 13; Alison, age 8; and Chloe, age 5. An essential part of his team, Dee is Dr. Agena’s registered nurse and office manager.
Dr. Agena’s family-friendly practice specializes in all stages of reproductive health: adolescents who are beginning their annual exams; contraceptive counseling; prenatal care, delivery and postpartum; perimenopausal and postmenopausal management; and other gynecological issues such as urinary incontinence and hysterectomies. He has hospital privileges at St. Tammany Parish Hospital as well as Lakeview Regional Medical Center. Dr. Agena delivers each baby himself. “Because I am a sole practitioner, my patients do not have to feel nervous or anxious about having someone they do not know deliver their baby,” he says.
Dr. Agena’s office is also a comprehensive OB/GYN facility all under one roof. Rather than having to visit another facility for lab work or an ultrasound, testing is performed in-house. Dee collects the lab samples and ultrasounds are performed by ultrasound technician, Katie Smith. From the clinical receptionist, Samantha McEachern to their billing specialist, Tamie Kraft, making patients feel cared for is how they run their business.
“We are here for all of our patients, all of the time. Because of the access to electronic files, Dee and I can provide care for a patient from wherever and whenever necessary. Dee is able to pull up the patient’s data, medications, conditions, everything and not have them feel like they have to wait until Monday to reach us,” states Dr. Agena.
Dr. Agena has a doctorate of medicine from LSU in New Orleans and he completed his residency at the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond. He returned to Louisiana and worked at North Oaks Medical Center in Hammond, three times receiving the North Oaks Champion award for excellence in patient care and completed his certification as a da Vinci® robotics surgeon. He is an honorary member of the American Association of Gynecologic Laparoscopists for special excellence in endoscopic procedures and is a da Vinci® Surgical System trainer across the Gulf Coast area for Intuitive Surgical Inc., a global leader in robotic-assisted surgery.
The da Vinci® Surgical System combines computer and robotic technologies to provide enhanced visualization and precision during pelvic surgery and is used in over 60 percent of all hysterectomies performed nationwide. It is surgery with the smallest incisions, the potential for less recovery time and overall, for optimum patient outcomes.
Dr. Agena’s ability to make each person feel special is an extension of how he spends time with his own family. This family man not only works hard but plays hard. All three children as well as Dr. Agena participate in a weekly, family karate class; enjoy fishing on the weekends; and cook together most evenings. “Every person, even the kids, has an apron. We cook together, sit down at the table together and clean up together. This is a big center of our life,” he says.
Being together includes family and friends, especially when it comes to crawfish boils. “Dee is a ‘crawfish fanatic’ and throws regular, weekend boils. Our most recent boil was to watch the Kentucky Derby. We dressed up in all types of hats— bowlers, fedoras and clothing. It is always a lot of fun and another good reason to have a get together,” laughs Dr. Agena.
Dr. Agena’s gifts to his patients far exceed his talent, experience and certifications. It is the manner and attention in which he treats each and every person. He believes that it all comes down to the respect he has for his patients. “Patients are not just a number, they are unique individuals with their own special gifts and needs. I treat each person with the same attention and compassion I would want extended to my own family,” states Dr. Agena.
Dr. Gary M. Agena provides family-friendly, long-term, comprehensive, customized care in Obstetrics and Gynecology. Located at 393 Hwy. 21, Suite 525 in Arbor Walk Plaza in Madisonville, 985-845-7121, garyagenamd.com.