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Living healthier. For many people, taking that path begins with losing weight. It may not be easy, but, it can be done. And, for a certain group of individuals, surgical weight loss can be a launching pad for a new and healthier you.

The Surgical Weight Loss Program at Harlingen Medical Center will host a Surgical Weight Loss Information Seminar to help educate the community on what surgical weight loss is, what it can do for your health, and how it can positively impact your life in the future! Dr. Carlos Barba, Bariatric Surgeon, will lead the free seminar scheduled for Monday, November 7, 2016, at 5:30 p.m., in the hospital’s Medical Office Building (MOB) Conference Room, located at 5505 S. Expressway 77 in Harlingen (on the first floor of the building closest to the Expressway, behind the elevators, in Suite 102).

“Weight loss is something many people are looking to accomplish for themselves,” said Manny Chacon, Director of The Surgical Weight Loss Program at Harlingen Medical Center. “Many are looking to lose weight, with the assistance of surgical weight loss, because they want to be healthier, more physically active, and they want to improve their overall quality of life.”

The Surgical Weight Loss Program Information Seminar will include an in-depth presentation featuring:

  • A general overview of the program
  • Surgical procedures offered
  • Available management/guidance through the program
  • Available nutritional management/guidance through the program
  • Nutritional management/guidance after the surgery
  • Financing options available for the procedure
  • Exercise regimen after the surgery
  • Available support group after the surgery

Those who attend the information seminar will also be given the opportunity to ask questions and receive immediate feedback regarding the program, procedures, nutritional guidelines, exercise regimen, financial assistance, and more.

“The ideal candidate for surgical weight loss is someone who is a minimum of 100 pounds over their ideal weight; and suffers from co-morbidities, such as Type II Diabetes, hypertension, and/or osteoarthritis,” Chacon said. “There are a number of qualifying factors that someone looking to have surgical weight loss should meet before they consider this path. This is a procedure which gives people a tool to begin their weight loss journey — but there are serious matters to consider before one chooses surgical weight loss.”

According to bariatric experts, surgical weight loss is ideally for someone who has a need to resolve medical problems related to obesity. That is because surgical weight loss has been shown to improve the health status of a patient, in many cases. In some instances, it has been shown to eliminate diabetes altogether. With some patients, the surgery has also helped to reduce their blood pressure back to normal levels. And, if the patient follows specific dietary, exercise, and vitamin instructions, it can have great benefits to the patient’s overall health.

Surgical weight loss is designed to alter the anatomy of a patient’s stomach, limiting their ability to take in food. The Surgical Weight Loss Program at Harlingen Medical Center offers the laparoscopic gastric sleeve, the roux-en-y gastric bypass, and the laparoscopic adjustable band, which are available to men, women, and young adults.

With the laparoscopic gastric sleeve, 80% of the stomach is removed surgically – creating a smaller stomach pouch that is then stapled. The newly-created smaller stomach pouch will allow for lesser food intake, helping the patient to reduce his or her weight.

With the roux-en-y gastric bypass, a portion of the stomach is removed and the remaining small pouch is connected to a portion of the small intestine, where most of the calories and nutrients are absorbed, causing the patient to lose weight.

With the laparoscopic adjustable band procedure, a ring, also known as a band, is placed around a portion of the stomach in order to restrict the intake of food. This creates a smaller stomach pouch – allowing for lesser food in-take; helping the patient to reduce their weight.

“The goal of our surgical weight loss program is to improve the patient’s health, quality of life, and life span, by inducing weight loss,” Chacon added. “Through our program, the patient will also be able to improve self-image and cosmetic appearance, while moving forward with a new, healthier life.”

The Surgical Weight Loss Program at Harlingen Medical Center features multi-disciplinary support before, during, and after surgery. In many cases, the program and resources — combined with the highly-experienced staff at Harlingen Medical Center – can give patients their best opportunity for successful long-term weight loss and improved health.

If you would like to attend The Surgical Weight Loss Program Information Seminar, please RSVP to 956-365-1140 or at To learn more about surgical weight loss or medical services available at Harlingen Medical Center, please visit