Cincinnati Children’s has the most comprehensive surgical weight loss program in the nation exclusively for adolescents. Team members in this first-of-its-kind program understand the unique needs and significant impact that excess weight can have on the life of a teen.  

Under the leadership of Michael A. Helmrath, MD, MS, and Stavra Xanthakos, MD, the Surgical Weight Loss Program for Teens (SWLPT) consists of professionals who are experts in their fields:

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics
  • Nursing
  • Nutrition
  • Liver / stomach / intestinal conditions
  • Behavioral health

We also provide direct access to experts in other subspecialty fields. Our team works together to provide patients and their families with high-quality, innovative medical and surgical care.

Realizing that weight loss surgery is a difficult and life-changing decision, the surgical weight loss team provides patients with extensive, individualized assessments and preoperative treatment recommendations, directed with long-term success and safety in mind.

Since 2001, SWLPT has offered the laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB). In 2008 we began offering the laparoscopic vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG). Over time, there has been a shift in procedure choice, with an increase in patients choosing the VSG over RYGB. Our program continues to offer both RYGB and VSG. We believe surgical choice is important.

In collaboration with patients and families, we work together to determine the best procedure on a case-by-case basis. Tracking our patient outcomes and sharing this information creates an open environment where best practices and productive interaction among clinicians will continue to improve the care for all adolescents undergoing weight loss surgery.