Ohio State is a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence

At Ohio State, our bariatrics program specializes in fitting surgical procedures to individuals with severe obesity. And we’re not just concerned with helping you lose the weight – we also want to help lower your risk of associated medical conditions, such as Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and sleep apnea, which can lead to heart failure, heart attack, blood clots and stroke, among other issues.

Ohio State was the first in central Ohio to develop a comprehensive, multidisciplinary program using a team of experts in psychology, nutrition, exercise physiology, endocrinology and more to ensure your long-term success. Our team approach involves physicians, nurses, dietitians and exercise specialists to personalize a weight-loss plan to meet your specific goals and needs. We are dedicated to offering you the highest standards of quality care and safety. We know that your weight-loss journey doesn’t end after surgery. That’s why we provide ongoing nutrition, fitness and wellness support, including fitness center and warm-water pool programs. Find out if bariatrics is the right weight-loss option for you by attending one of our bariatric surgery information sessions.

What is Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery is a weight-loss technique that changes the anatomy of the gastrointestinal tract (the stomach and digestive system) and creates physiological changes in the body that alter energy balance and fat metabolism. In Ohio State’s Comprehensive Weight Management Program, bariatric surgery is combined with guidance on nutrition, exercise regimens and behavior changes tailored to each individual to help them reach long-term success.

Why bariatric surgery?

Bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment for weight loss in people who have a BMI or 35 or above. Many people in this group may have temporary success with changes in diet and exercise and/or by using diet pills, but research shows that much of the weight lost is likely to return over the years.

Bariatrics has been shown to help improve or resolve many obesity-related medical conditions, such as Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease. Often, those who reduce their weight to a healthier level are able to take fewer medications to treat their obesity-related conditions.

Who qualifies for weight loss surgery?

Who qualifies for weight loss surgery?

Bariatric surgery usually is recommended only for people who have a BMI of 35 or higher and who have tried losing weight using medication or diet and exercise changes without success.

This surgery typically is recommended for those with a BMI of 40 or higher even if they have no obesity-related medical conditions. 

For those with a BMI of 35 to 39.9, bariatric surgery generally is recommended when the person also has one or more obesity-related condition (or co-morbidity), including Type 2 diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), sleep apnea and other respiratory disorders, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, osteoarthritis, lipid abnormalities, gastrointestinal disorders or heart disease.

Weight loss surgery options

About 95 percent of bariatric surgeries at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center are laparoscopic, or minimally invasive, meaning a surgeon inserts instruments through several small incisions. Rarely do Ohio State surgeons perform open bariatric surgery.
Each person is different, and choosing a surgery type will depend on your medical history, lifestyle and nutritional habits. Once you begin meeting with our experts, having open and honest discussions with them can provide you with all necessary information to choose a procedure that fits your needs.

Minimally invasive surgery features several benefits over open surgery:

  • less pain after surgery
  • less noticeable scars
  • fewer wound complications
  • shorter recovery times
  • less skin and muscle tissue trauma
  • earlier mobility
  • shorter hospital stays

Why choose Ohio State for Bariatric Surgery?

  • With more than 30 years of bariatric surgery experience, Ohio State teaches surgeons from across the nation how to perform this surgery.

  • More weight-loss surgeries are performed at Ohio State than at any other program in central Ohio, with 95 percent performed using minimally invasive techniques.

  • Ohio State is recognized as a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence® by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.

  • Our bariatric surgery program sees complication rates much lower than national standards.

  • Ohio State was the first in central Ohio to perform minimally invasive gastric bypass surgery.

"The physicians and staff members at Ohio State are so positive; they made me feel like my surgery day was going to be the first day of the rest of my life." Melissa Bariatric Surgery Patient

Patient Success Stories

Shaun's Bariatric Journey

Meet Shaun and learn how the bariatric program at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center helped him shed 120 pounds so that he can live life to the fullest by spending more time with his daughter.

Christopher's Bariatric Journey

Meet Christopher and learn how the bariatric surgery program and care team at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center has helped him lose 134 pounds and stop taking his medication, and has transformed his quality of life.

Kristan’s Bariatric Journey

Meet Kristan and learn how the Ohio State Bariatric Surgery Program gave her hope and has helped her live life to the fullest for more than six years.

Randy’s Bariatric Journey

Meet Randy and learn how the Ohio State Bariatric Surgery Program helped him lose 140 pounds, stop taking medication and has allowed him to spend much more free time with his daughter.

Melissa’s Bariatric Journey

Meet Melissa and learn how the Ohio State Bariatric Surgery Program saved her life, sparked her passion for exercise and helped her on her journey to health and wellness.

Bariatric Providers

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