Dr. Merriman of Freedom From Obesity® is the most experienced bariatric (weight loss) surgeon in the Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana region. Through dedication and a commitment to new innovations in surgical obesity help, Dr. Merriman has remained at the forefront of the bariatric surgery industry. Our practice offers everything from effective surgical weight loss solutions to comprehensive support, educational resources, information, dietary guidance, and emotional support.
We offer a variety of different surgical options for our patients including Lap Band or gastric banding surgery, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy, and Revisional Surgery. Our patients considering bariatric surgery attend a free information session prior to surgery to ensure they are fully aware of the process and the expected results. They also receive ongoing monthly support group meetings with the goal of sustaining increased health and well being while attaining weight loss goals.
Compassionate & Kind Approach
Dr. Merriman offers a kind and compassionate approach and provides each of his patients with the tools they need for success well after their surgery. Our website has many informational resources and videos for guidance and education. Please browse our website and then contact us to schedule an initial consultation in our office. We are conveniently located near to the areas of Shreveport, Louisiana, Longview, Texas, and Bossier City, Louisiana.
We are ready to assist you in your journey towards weight loss, improved health, and enhanced well being. If you are ready to explore obesity help through weight loss surgery, contact us today by calling 318-222-4282.
What is the OBALON Balloon System for Weight Loss?
By George R. Merriman II, MD, FACS
What is Obalon? …..The Obalon Balloon System is the first FDA approved swallowable intragastric balloon system to facilitate weight loss in adults with obesity (BMI of 30 – 40) who have failed to lose weight through diet and exercise. This novel, nonsurgical, fully-reversible device for weight loss consists of a balloon folded inside a capsule that is swallowed by the patient, with no sedation or anesthesia required. Once the balloon reaches the stomach, it is remotely inflated with gas via a micro-catheter that is then removed, leaving a buoyant balloon in the stomach. Each actual placement process is less than 10 minutes on average. A fully inflated single balloon is about the size of a small orange and weighs approximately 3 grams (about what a penny weighs).
How does it work?... Three balloons are placed gradually over 6-12 weeks to maximize patient's ability to tolerate the balloons while facilitating continual weight loss throughout the 6-month treatment period. At the end of six months, all three balloons are removed via an outpatient endoscopy under light conscious sedation. I’m excited to offer this new weight loss tool to our area. I believe this new system, because of its design, will be well tolerated by even the most sensitive patients. Also, with this system, the patient can resume their normal activity right after the placement of the balloon. They can come in for a 30-minute placement appointment, a 30-minute dietitian appointment and then go right back to work or their other commitments of the day.
Why does it work?... The success of this system is built around three components: design, commitment, and support. In terms of design, the Obalon Balloon System helps facilitate weight loss by taking up space in a patient’s stomach so the patient eats less and feels full longer. During treatment, patients receive professional nutrition and exercise support to help make the lifestyle changes that facilitate weight loss for the long term.
What? I Have Type 2 Diabetes…Now What?
By Lisa Stansbury, MS, LDN, RD, CDE Dietitian for Freedom From Obesity
Shocking and scary words to hear for anyone who has been recently diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Don’t think that you are alone….the CDC reports that there are over 23.1 million people who have heard those very words. There are still 7.2 million people who have diabetes that have yet to be diagnosed with an additional 84.1 million adults over the age of 18 that have the early stages of diabetes (pre-diabetes).
There are two main types of diabetes. Type 1 Diabetes is a chronic condition where the pancreas makes little or no insulin at all. Type 1 develops usually at a young age. When diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, you have a chronic condition that affects the way the body processes blood sugar (glucose) either due to the pancreas producing inadequate amounts of insulin or your body not appropriately responding to the insulin being produced.
Diabetes is a chronic, lifelong disease resulting from your body’s inability to process a sugar called glucose. Your digestive system breaks down foods and beverages resulting in a variety of nutrients which include glucose. While a portion of glucose produced is stored in your liver, most enters your blood stream and travels to cells to be used as fuel for energy. Glucose needs the help of a hormone called insulin (produced by the pancreas) to enter your cells. Insulin is thought of as the “key” that unlocks the door and allows glucose to enter the cells thus being used for energy. Glucose can’t enter the cells without insulin. When you have Type 2 Diabetes the cells don’t respond well to the available insulin in your blood stream, thus glucose can’t enter cells easily and builds up in your bloodstream. This is called insulin resistance and is associated with Type 2 Diabetes.
Diabetes is not a disease to take lightly…high blood sugars damage both your large and small vessels which can lead to complications for your entire body. Heart attacks, kidney damage, strokes, nerve damage, blindness and amputations are complications that can result from uncontrolled blood sugars. Managing your diabetes can and will help you reduce your risk of the above complications and not allow diabetes to manage or control you!
A Bariatric Center of Excellence
*Disclaimer: All weight loss claims are due to surgery. Results will vary by person and are based upon the patient, the surgery type and the compliance with the aftercare program.
Freedom From Obesity® • 949 Olive Street • Shreveport, LA 71104 • Phone (318) 222-3132 • Fax (318) 222-3865