Patient case study: Wayne Gower has transformed his life
after losing 10 stone following weight loss surgery. Picture above
: before and after surgery.
A new clinic has been set up to tackle County Durham's obesity
epidemic, after the region was named as one of the top 10 'fattest
local authorities' in the UK following a Public Health England
Levels of adult obesity in County Durham are worse than the England
average, and two out of three adults in the region are overweight
or obese. Obesity is predicted to cost the local Clinical
Commissioning Group more than £100 million by next year.
The new bariatric clinic at Chester-le-Street Community Hospital
is run by a team of obesity experts from County Durham and
Darlington NHS Foundation Trust (CDDFT). It has been developed to
provide advice and support to members of the community by bringing
services closer to home.
Visitors to the service, who are referred by their GP, will be
given advice based upon their circumstances on healthy eating,
exercise, and what weight loss surgery may be able to offer them.
The clinic will complement the existing facilities at Darlington
Consultant Surgeon, Andy Gilliam, said: "We are seeing a huge
increase in the number of patients looking to undergo bariatric
surgery in County Durham. The obesity 'time bomb' the media has
been warning us of has finally detonated and we need to do
something to tackle it now.
"Patients can ask their GP for referral to our service if they want
help and support to lose weight. We have a team of health trainers
who offer workshops on healthy eating and cooking to patients. It
might sound like back-to-basics stuff, but we're seeing more and
more patients who don't own a pot or pan and rely solely on their
microwave or local takeaway for every meal - it really is
Surgeon Ajay Gupta added: "We provide a comprehensive bariatric
service across the board, from Cook4Life classes and psychological
support to optimise weight loss following bariatric surgery to a
full range of bariatric procedures including gastric balloon,
gastric bands, sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass, each of which
is tailored to the needs of the patient. We have a unique health
improvement team in place which ensures patients are supported
throughout their journey to lose weight with us."
The service is hoping to expand in April to offer a Tier 3 service
including workshops with dietitians, psychologists and
physiotherapists to help patients with severe and complex
Anyone wanting to find out more about the stages of undergoing
weight loss surgery can watch a video on CDDFT's YouTube channel
Patients wishing to be referred to the Chester-le-Street clinic can
do so through their GP.
A grandfather of eight has had his life transformed after losing
10 stone with the help of bariatric surgery. Read
Wayne Gower's story...
'As I was very, very nervous, I must have been the worst patient
ever and they were brilliant with me and I can't thank them enough
- could you please pass on my sincere thanks.'
Patient, Hysteroscopy Unit, Chester-le-Street Community