Bariatric Surgery Program
Obesity rates in Ohio and the nation continue to rise. Ohio now ranks 10th in the U.S. in its rate of adult obesity at 24.9 %, Ohio’s high school students rank 4th in the nation with an obesity level of 13.9 %, and Ohio has the 33rd highest overweight level for low-income children ages 2-5 at 11.1%. The state spent approximately $289 per person in 2003 on medical costs related to obesity, which was the 11th highest amount in the U.S.
In response to this public health crisis, Nationwide Children's Hospital has recently established the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition, a multidisciplinary center of excellence focused on the diagnosis and treatment options for pediatric and adolescent patients at risk for or suffering from obesity. This hospital-based center has developed strategies to address all clinical aspects of obesity care both at the acute and sub-acute levels. In addition, the center has a core research facility dedicated to obesity-related basic science and clinical investigation.
In accordance with the hospital’s long range strategic plan to serve the obese population of Central Ohio, The Department of Surgery, in conjunction with the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition, has developed a division of Adolescent Bariatric Surgery. The program has two pediatric bariatric surgeons, Dr. Marc Michalsky and Dr. Steven Teich, as well as a bariatric program coordinator, dietician, exercise therapist and child psychologist. Since late 2004, Drs. Michalsky and Teich have performed more than 20 bariatric surgical procedures including the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and the laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAPBAND®). In January 2007, the program was awarded a $900,000 industry grant (Allergan, Irvine, California) to support its participation in a longitudinal multi-centered FDA-approved clinical trial investigating the use of LAPBAND® in adolescents between the ages of 14 and 17 years.
In April 2009, the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition will conduct a major national conference on the Multi-disciplinary Approach to Childhood Obesity. The proposed conference will bring together nationally-renowned scientists and physicians to discuss and make recommendations on current treatment strategies and healthcare delivery options specific to children with obesity. The goal will be to establish a consensus opinion on improving access and delivery of state-of-the-art therapy, prevention strategies and future research directions.