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Surgical Associates - Bariatric Surgery

Losing weight isn’t easy. Neither are the health challenges that accompany being overweight or obese. We offer a number of options, including bariatric surgery. Consult your weight loss doctor to decide which weight loss alternative is right for you.

Weight Loss Surgery - Arkansas

Morbid obesity is a complex medical disease with serious economic, social and psychological impact. While being obese is certainly a quality of life issue, it is also the cause of medical conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, sleep apnea and joint disease. For patients 100 or more pounds over their ideal body weight, weight loss surgery can be the most effective weight loss treatment. 

Questions to help you determine if weight loss surgery is a possible treatment for you:

  • Have you tried dieting and exercise only to gain back the weight you have lost plus more?
  • Is your weight affecting your health? 
  • Are you ready to make the commitment to work with our weight loss team to help you be successful in your long-term weight loss goals?

Candidates for weight loss surgery:

  • Are between the ages of 18 and 65.
  • Have a BMI (Body Mass Index) of 40 or more (about 100lbs. over ideal body weight).
  • Have a BMI between 35-40 and with medical problems such as diabetes, sleep apnea, high blood pressure, joint disease or high cholesterol.

If these apply to you, then surgery may be the right option for long-term weight loss. When combined with dietary changes, exercise and counseling, patients can lose weight and maintain a healthy weight.

Weight Loss Clinic Team and Care

St. Bernards has assembled a multi-disciplinary team of professionals, specially trained in weight loss surgery. The team is led by Dr. Willie Harper, Jr., and includes weight loss doctors, nurses, dieticians, physical therapists, psychological providers, anesthesia providers, a weight loss program coordinator and others. All team members work together to provide comprehensive care for the whole person including psychological, nutritional and physical evaluation.

St. Bernards Weight Loss Clinic offers continuous support and education before, during and after weight loss surgery. The clinic is committed to ensuring our patient experience is comfortable and successful. Our operating room boasts state-of-the-art surgical equipment and instrumentation and our recovery area features specially designed bariatric suites with comfortable size beds and furniture.

Surgical options are Sleeve Gastrectomy and Gastric Bypass. Both options are performed laparoscopically, also referred to as minimally invasive, meaning small incisions are made through which a small camera and medical instruments are inserted into the body to complete the procedure. The advantages of laparoscopic surgery are faster recovery times, less bleeding, minimal scarring, shorter hospitalization and less pain. 

Most bariatric surgery patients experience effective weight loss and improvement or resolution of co-morbid conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and sleep apnea.

Sleeve Gastrectomy

Sleeve Gastrectomy permanently reduces the size of the stomach which restricts the amount of food a person is able to eat, resulting in weight loss. The surgical procedure removes about 75percent of the stomach, leaving a long banana-shaped sleeve that can hold far less food.


Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass

During Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass, the surgeon cuts away approximately 85percent of the stomach, leaving a small golf ball-sized pouch that holds little food, reducing the amount that can be consumed. The portion of the stomach that is cut away remains in the abdomen and remains connected to the small intestine but no longer accepts food. The second part of the procedure bypasses a portion of the small intestine so fewer calories will be absorbed through the intestinal wall, further contributing to weight loss. 


For more information, please contact Hillary Callahan, Bariatric Program Coordinator, at 870.243.0531.

Interested in learning more? The first step is to attend one of our free informational seminars. Our bariatric surgeon, Dr. Willie E. Harper, Jr. will present a program that will cover all the specifics of our program and the weight loss surgeries we offer. 

Can't make it to a seminar? We now offer you the chance to watch it below. After watching the seminar, if you want to learn more about bariatric surgery, please fill out the form here to be contacted.

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