Bariatric & Medical Weight Loss

Indiana University Health provides a customized approach to surgical weight loss. Our staff includes a team of professionals who are experts in medicine, nursing, nutrition, psychology and surgery. Our bariatric surgeons are recognized as both leaders and educators and have performed thousands of weight loss operations.

IU Health Bariatric & Medical Weight Loss has been named an American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence. The ASMBS Center of Excellence designation recognizes surgical programs with a demonstrated record of accomplishment of favorable outcomes in bariatric surgery.

Indiana University Health North Hospital was designated as a Blue Distinction Center by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in the area of bariatric surgery in 2012. Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery have demonstrated their commitment to quality care, resulting in better overall outcomes for bariatric patients. Blue Distinction Center certification is awarded only to select programs that emphasize best-practice care and achieve excellent outcomes.

Our partnership with the Indiana University School of Medicine adds the benefit of giving you access to innovative research, renowned scientists and the latest advancements in bariatrics and metabolism.

The dedicated staff and physicians at IU Health North Hospital, deliver the highest quality of care and compassion to those complex and morbidly obese patients. All staff members are deeply committed to the science and art of caring for morbidly obese patients. Some of our staff have had weight loss surgery and possess a personal perspective that allows them to deliver valuable knowledge and advice.

Weight loss surgery is only one aspect of the IU Health Bariatric & Medical Weight Loss program. While surgery can help you achieve your initial goal of weight loss, the preparation and exceptional follow-up treatment is how IU Health sets itself apart. We also offer pre- and post-operation support groups. We partner with Indiana University Health Arnett Hospital and Indiana University Health Ball Memorial Hospital to provide a medically supervised weight loss program for those who do not qualify for or may not want the surgery. Having the right support throughout the entire weight loss process is an important aspect that is sometimes overlooked and vital to long-term success.

Weight-loss surgery falls into two basic categories: restrictive surgery and malabsorptive surgery. Operations that reduce the stomach size are known as restrictive surgery because they restrict the amount of food the stomach can hold. An example of this type of procedure is the adjustable banding. Some operations combine stomach restriction with a partial bypass of the small intestine. These procedures create a direct connection from the stomach to the lower segment of the small intestine, literally bypassing portions of the digestive tract that absorb calories and nutrients. These are known as malabsorptive surgeries.

All of the weight loss surgeries at IU Health Bariatric & Medical Weight Loss are minimally invasive or "laparoscopic" surgeries, unless there is a medical reason that would not allow minimally invasive surgery. Laparoscopic surgery is a less invasive surgical option because it eliminates the need for a long incision to open the abdomen. A small video camera is inserted through the small incision made in the abdominal wall, and the surgeon views the procedure on a video monitor. 

Malabsorptive Surgery

Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery is the most common and successful malabsorptive surgery. First, a small stomach pouch is created to restrict food intake. Next, a Y-shaped section of the small intestine is attached to the pouch to allow food to bypass the lower stomach, the duodenum (the first segment of the small intestine) and the first portion of the jejunum (the second segment of the small intestine). This bypass reduces the amount of calories and nutrients the body can absorb. It is the primary surgery performed by IU Health Bariatric & Medical Weight Loss.

This operation can be performed either by a traditional open surgery or laparoscopically which is a relatively new technology that uses a small video camera and a few customized instruments to perform the surgery with minimal tissue damage. The Roux-en-Y technique is generally more effective in reversing health problems associated with severe obesity. Patients who have malabsorptive operations generally lose two-thirds of their excess weight within the first two years. Today, this procedure is considered the “Gold Standard” for bariatric surgery.

Restrictive Surgery

Gastric Band Surgery

Restrictive operations serve only to restrict food intake and do not interfere with the normal digestive process. To perform the surgery, doctors create a small pouch at the top of the stomach where the food enters from the esophagus. Initially, the pouch holds about one ounce of food and later expands to hold more. The lower outlet of the pouch has a small opening to delay the emptying of any food from the pouch and causes a feeling of fullness.

Restrictive operations for obesity include the adjustable gastric band, which restricts the size of the stomach using a band.

Sleeve Gastrectomy

This operation involves the laparoscopic resection of about 75 percent of the stomach, leaving behind a long slender gastric tube. The operation is typically completed in about one hour and most patients stay in the hospital for one or two nights. Patients tend to tolerate this operation very well. The sleeve gastrectomy has a high safety profile since it is performed laparoscopically. The intestines are not manipulated in this operation, so it is an ideal option for those patients who have previously had extensive intestinal surgery or have dense adhesions.

Revision Surgery

The bariatric surgeons at IU Health Bariatric & Medical Weight Loss are highly skilled and experienced in bariatric surgery. Because of their level of expertise, we can perform revision bariatric surgeries, which are corrective surgeries that repair previous weight loss surgeries that have failed. Our surgeons carefully screen all patients who need revision surgeries, and surgeries are successful due to their meticulous approach and level of skill.

Bariatric Seminar Schedules

*Please note: Online seminars have been put on hold due to limited availability of patient appointments.

IU Health Bariatrics now offers one weekend (Saturday) seminar each month, held on the third Saturday of the month and starting at 9 am. If you are interested in attending a seminar, please call 317.688.2647 to reserve your spot or ask about our online seminar option as well. Our seminars have a limited seating capacity and are awarded on a first come, first serve basis. All patients are required to attend a seminar before starting their program.

Please note:

  • Due to limited seat availability, we ask that you bring only ONE support person with you to the seminars. 
  • All seminars are held on the 1st floor of IU Health North Hospital in Room K130, located at 11700 N. Meridian St., Carmel, IN 46032.

These seminars are informational only, and you will be contacted within seven to 10 business days to make your consultation appointment with a physician of your choice.

Additional Contact Information

For Patients
Call direct: 317.688.2647
We are located at: 11725 N. Illinois St., Suite 350 Carmel, IN 46032

For Physicians
Any physician, healthcare professional or healthcare agency may refer a patient to IU Health North Hospital Bariatrics services.
Call direct: 317.688.2647