Bariatric Surgery Program Celebrates First Year Anniversary

Fairfield Medical Center’s bariatric surgery program will celebrate its first year anniversary in February, with 47 weight loss surgeries performed to date.

Bariatric surgeon Dr. Timothy Custer leads FMC’s multi-disciplinary bariatric team, which includes Board-certified Bariatrician Dr. Robert Zee, Bariatric Psychologist Jeannine Abbott, Bariatric Program Coordinator Pam Dye, Bariatric Dietician Emily Curry and Exercise Specialist Chris Chong. The program is designed to help educate and prepare patients for surgery while ensuring optimal success for each patient in the months and years following surgery.

“Obesity and its associated consequences currently represent the single greatest health threat to those in Fairfield County,” Dr. Custer said. “Conversely, no medical or surgical intervention exists that can come close to resolving as many medical problems or effecting such profound benefits as bariatric surgery. Our patients routinely lose over 100 pounds, discontinue most of their medications and experience life-altering, positive change, all for the same risk as gallbladder or knee surgery.”

Candidates for bariatric surgery are those who suffer from clinically severe obesity as defined by the National Institute of Health. FMC offers three bariatric surgery procedures: Lap band, gastric sleeve and gastric bypass surgery. All surgeries are performed by Dr. Custer, who has performed weight loss surgery since 2001 and completed approximately 1,000 bariatric surgeries to date.

The bariatric program has been highly successful in its first year, according to data compiled from patients who had surgery between February and August of 2013. The data shows an average of 57 percent excess weight loss, with 100 percent resolution of diabetes and gastroesophageal reflux disease and 100 percent improvement of sleep apnea. The data also shows an 80 percent resolution of hypertension and 20 percent improvement of hypertension. The current total weight loss for all surgery patients is more than 2,400 pounds.

Bariatric surgery is part of a comprehensive program at FMC called Healthy Weigh for Life. The program is designed for those seeking a more permanent weight-loss solution. To learn more about FMC’s surgical and non-surgical weight loss options, call (740) 689-4460.

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