Bariatric Surgery
If you are experiencing flu-like or COVID-19 symptoms, call us at 503-814-0099 before visiting any of our locations. Learn more.
Watch our in-depth information session.

Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center


Thank you for your interest in our program! We’re committed to helping improve the medical, social, emotional, and psychological lives of people with obesity. We feel it’s important to treat the entire person by providing appropriate physical and psychological support before, during and after your surgery.

We’re here to help you in every way we can. Please do not hesitate to contact our office with your questions or concerns.

We believe in a whole team approach — and you are part of that team. Evaluations are done by team members with range
of expertise to ensure the highest quality of pre- and post-surgical weight loss care.


Get started

Woman stretching outside near a lake

 

 

 

We're here to help you decide if weight loss surgery is right for you.

 

 

Success stories

These patients started where you are today — and look at them now!

 



“I finally feel like I have a healthy relationship with food and with being active.”

Jessica V.

 



“My diabetes is undetectable. I'm off of all medications. This has changed my life.”

Steve M.

 



"Pienso que voy a vivir más años para estar con mi familia y eso es lo más importante."

Elizabeth C.M.

 









"Salem Health gives you the tools to be successful far beyond the surgery."
Stephanie L. — bariatric surgery patient

 

 

Meet our providers

 


Nair, Rajan V.

Rajan Nair, MD         

Bariatric surgeon

Dr. Nair has been in practice since 1999 at Salem Clinic and serves as the Director of Bariatric Surgery at Salem Health since 2006.

Dr. Nair graduated from Stanford University and received his medical degree from the University of Arizona. He completed his general surgical training at the University of Arizona.

 


Boulay, Catherine A.

Catherine Boulay, MD

Bariatric surgeon

Dr. Boulay has been in practice since 2006 and joined Salem Clinic and the bariatric surgery team at Salem Health in 2007.

She graduated from Johns Hopkins University and received her medical degree from Columbia University. She completed her general surgical training at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center.

 


Crownover, Julie D.

Julie Crownover, PA 

Physician Assistant

Julie Crownover, physician assistant, has worked in surgery for 23 years, 10 of those as a physician assistant. She joined the Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center in 2019.

Julie's special interests include general surgery and, of course, bariatric surgery.

 

 

Meet our dietitians

Meagan Ayoub, MPH, RD, LDN

Meagan received her master's degree in public health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a focus in nutrition. While studying, she received training in weight management dietetics, including bariatric surgery.

Eleanor Rankin, MS, RD, LDN

Eleanor has a master's of science degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She earned her license in 2013.

 

 

Seal of the MBSAQIP

Salem Health is proud to be accredited

Patients have many options for where to have bariatric surgery. One significant decision is whether you’ll have your surgery at an accredited or a non-accredited facility. In making this choice, it’s critical patients and referring physicians understand what makes a facility accredited — and why accreditation is so important.

The bariatric and metabolic surgery accreditation process is known as the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP). MBSAQIP was developed jointly by the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery, to foster patient safety and surgical excellence. To become accredited, a facility undergoes a rigorous process of evaluations to ensure a high level of quality.

Learn more about MBSAQIP


Why is accreditation so important?

A recent study showed the mortality rates at non-accredited facilities are, on average, three times greater than at accredited facilities.

Accreditation is an important, potentially life-saving process. We encourage patients and referring physicians to seek out facilities that meet these rigorous standards.

How to get started


Bariatric surgery is an effective way to lose a substantial amount of weight for those willing to make lifelong lifestyle changes. The getting started process is simple yet rigorous. This process will help you understand:

  • Which type of bariatric surgery that's right for you.
  • Any preparation you'll need to complete.
  • The lifelong lifestyle changes that are needed.
  • And more.

Please contact us at any point if you have questions.

Excited woman using a laptop

 

 

STEP 1

| Watch an information session

The first step to having bariatric surgery is watching our information session. The information session provides details that can help you choose a weight loss surgery option that makes sense for you.

Before watching, download and review the following:

 

 

STEP 2

| Submit your forms

Download and complete the following forms:

  1. Patient questionnaire
  2. Information session review
  3. Authorization form
  4. Insurance coverage worksheet

If you prefer paper copies of the forms, call 503-814-5286. After completing the forms, please email or mail them to us.

Bariatric.Surgery@salemhealth.org

Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center
875 Oak St. SE, Suite 5040
Salem, OR 97301

Contact us if you have any questions about the forms.

Woman holding dumbell weights while walking outside

 

 

STEP 3

| Find out what your insurance covers

More and more health insurance plans are covering bariatric surgery than ever before. Once you find out what your plan covers (use the insurance coverage worksheet listed in Step 2), we can help you review any of their requirements. For example, many insurance companies ask that you:

  • Provide several months of documented diet history.
  • Talk to a dietitian and a mental health professional before surgery.

We can also help you understand how much you may be expected to pay out of pocket. Our staff works directly with you to suggest finance and payment options.

You may need a referral from your primary care provider. Your health insurance provider will inform you if a referral is necessary.

Woman taking notes on a piece of paper

 

 

STEP 4

| Complete a screening phone call

After we receive your completed forms, we'll call you to discuss your medical history and next steps.

Woman talking on the phone

 

 

Frequently asked questions


Most people that have bariatric surgery begin the process with a lot of questions. The most frequently asked questions are on this page. Before contacting us with questions of your own, please read all the questions and answers here. If you still have questions that aren't addressed here, please contact us.

Dr. Nair meeting with patient

 

 

“They’re the most outstanding group of people. From start to finish, they are awesome. They will take care of you like you’re a member of the family.”

Steve M. — Bariatric surgery patient

 

Am I a candidate for surgery?

To have bariatric surgery at Salem Hospital, you must meet the guidelines below.

You must:

  • Have a body mass index (BMI) between 35 and 65.
  • Be between 21 and 75 years old.
  • Be free from nicotine, cannabis and drugs (or be willing to quit for life). Salem Health Community Health Education Center offers smoking cessation classes.

You cannot:

  • Weigh more than 500 pounds.
  • Have chronic kidney failure or be on dialysis.
  • Have a history of stomach procedures.
  • Have severe uncontrolled psychiatric disorders or attempted suicide.
  • Be pregnant.

 

Which surgery is right for me?

Everyone's needs are different — that's why we offer two kinds of bariatric surgery.

 

Gastric bypass illustration

Gastric bypass surgery

In gastric bypass surgery (also called Roux-en-Y surgery), the stomach is divided into two sections: a small section — called a “pouch” — and a large section. Depending on your BMI or surgical history this procedure may be done laparoscopically or with an open incision.

 

Sleeve gastrectomy illustration

Sleeve gastrectomy surgery

Sleeve weight-loss surgery is also called a laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy — or gastric sleeve for short. The surgeon makes six small incisions in your abdomen and uses a tiny camera and other instruments to perform the surgery through these openings.

 

 

How long is recovery?

Most patients take two weeks off from work after gastric bypass or sleeve gastrectomy surgery. When they return, they’re on light duty for four to six weeks. After that, they resume their regular work. Your surgeon will help decide what’s right for you.

 

Plus size woman meeting with her doctor

 

Woman jogging in a park

What is life like after bariatric surgery?

The ultimate goal of weight-loss surgery is to improve your health. Surgery is a tool to achieve and maintain your health and weight-loss goals. Even after surgery, it may take months or years before you reach your goal weight.

To maintain your weight once you reach your goal, you will still need to commit to:

  • Taking lifelong dietary supplements, including calcium and a bariatric multivitamin.
  • Eating a variety of healthy foods — including vegetables, fruit, lean protein and low-fat dairy.
  • Regular physical activity most days of the week.
  • Drinking 48 to 64 ounces of recommended liquids daily – water, herbal tea, and certain sugar-free, non-carbonated, caffeine-free drinks.
  • Never smoking or drinking alcohol.
  • Following up regularly with your bariatric surgery team. We’re here to support you in your success!

 


 

Bariatric surgery FAQs

Can I afford it?
Is weight-loss surgery reversible?
Will I regain weight in the future?
What happens to the rest of my stomach after surgery?
What happens to my excess skin after surgery?
What is dumping syndrome?
Will I have diarrhea or increased gas after surgery?
What about pregnancy?
Why shouldn’t I drink alcohol after weight loss surgery?
Why can’t I smoke or vape?
Should cannabis be avoided before and after bariatric surgery?

Expand all

Collapse all

Support groups


The Bariatric Surgery Support Group is for current and former patients only and their support persons. Each meeting is held online from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. via Zoom.

Our support group is led by clinical psychologist, Steve Besing, PhD, as well as other special guests. Dr. Besing has worked at the Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center for more than a decade.


Due to COVID-19, all support group meetings take place online until further notice.

 

Get updates in your inbox

Sign up for our monthly support group newsletter. We'll send you one email every month with a list of upcoming support group dates and topics.


Sign up

 

 

 

People sitting in a circle while talking

 

Upcoming support group meetings

All support groups will take place online via Zoom Web Conferencing until further notice.

Ask the clinic nurse

Date:
May 19, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Post-surgery group: What is your relationship with food?

Date:
May 23, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Practicing mindfulness

Date:
June 14, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Walking 101

Date:
June 16, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Meet at Bush Park in the parking lot at the end of the soap box derby.


Gender and weight loss

Date:
June 27, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Triggers and solutions for emotional eating

Date:
July 12, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Topic to be determined

Date:
July 21, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Overcoming body image issues

Date:
August 09, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Topic to be determined

Date:
August 18, 2022

Time:
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Location:
Online


Program resources


We’re committed to helping improve the medical, social, emotional, and psychological lives of patients with obesity.

We feel it’s important to treat the entire person by providing appropriate physical and psychological support before, during and after your surgery.

We’re here to help you in every way we can.


Download Patient Information Packet

 

Woman using a computer and talking on the phone

 

 

Woman cooking in her kitchen

 

Bariatric surgery nutrition manual

Eating after bariatric surgery may look different. Download our free nutrition manual to see example recipes, learn tips and tricks, and so much more!


Download Nutrition Manual

 

 

Patient resources

Downloadable PDFs to help you on your weight loss journey.

 

 

 


Recommended web resources


ASMBS logo

 

OAC logo

 

Obesity Help logo

 

NIDDKD logo

 

Contact us


Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center
Salem Hospital, Building C, 5th floor
875 Oak St. SE, Suite 5040
Salem, OR 97301

Monday–Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Phone: 503-814-5286
Fax: 503-814-5467
Bariatric.Surgery@salemhealth.org

 

 



 

 


Parking info

1. Building C valet parking

If you have a scheduled appointment in Building C, enter the Building C parking garage on Winter Street. A free valet service will park your vehicle and you can proceed inside for your appointment.

 

2. Parking garage

You may also park in the Salem Hospital parking garage. Enter the parking garage from Capitol Street SE, park your car, then walk to Building C for your appointment.

Map of parking options