Skip to main content Skip to main content
Go to homepage

Adolescent Bariatric Surgery Program

When diet and exercise are not enough, weight-loss surgery may be an option for severely overweight adolescents. The Akron Children’s Hospital Healthy Active Living program offers bariatric surgery for adolescents with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 kg/m2 or higher – or a BMI of at least 35 kg/m2 with one or more weight-related health problems.

Our goal is to help patients improve their overall health and quality of life by achieving a healthier body weight.   

Our Team

The Akron Children’s bariatric surgery team includes pediatric surgeons, a pediatrician who specializes in pediatric obesity medicine, a nurse practitioner, dietitians, an exercise physiologist, a psychologist and a social worker.

Surgical Options

Bariatric surgery causes weight loss by:

  • Restricting the amount of food the stomach can hold at one time.
  • Decreasing absorption of nutrients.
  • Changing hormones released by the stomach and gut. 

Weight-loss surgery is usually performed using minimally invasive techniques (laparoscopic). The two most common weight-loss surgery procedures are sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass – and both are available at Akron Children’s Hospital.

The bariatric surgery team will explain each option, along with the risks and benefits. We also recommend visiting the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery website.   

Our Commitment

Having bariatric surgery is a major decision that affects patients for the rest of their lives. Along with family support, the bariatric surgery team is committed to helping patients through their weight loss journeys.

The path to bariatric surgery includes a minimum of 6 monthly clinic visits for medical evaluation and coaching on lifestyle changes that will help you successfully lose weight before and after surgery. After at least 6 visits, and when you are ready, the team will move forward with the process of getting insurance approval and scheduling your surgery. For the first year after surgery, patients will need frequent follow-up visits. Then, patients will be seen once a year until they transition to an adult bariatric program.  

Contact Us

To learn more about the Akron Children’s Hospital Adolescent Bariatric Surgery Program, call Healthy Active Living at 330-543-5673.

Department Main Image

Our Doctors/Providers


Scott Boulanger, MD

Director, Pediatric General Surgery; Pediatric General Surgeon


Geoffrey Putt, PsyD

Pediatric Psychologist


Marnie Walston, MD

Medical Director, Healthy Active Living Program; Pediatrician


Mark Wulkan, MD, FACS, FAAP

Bruce F. Rothmann, M.D. Chair in Pediatric Surgery

Nurse Practitioners/Physician Assistants:

Amy Perusek, MSN, APRN-CNP

Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Other Providers:

Amy Raineri, EP

Exercise Physiologist

Patient Stories

Meet Riley

Following bariatric surgery in September, 16-year-old Riley Ickes has lost 63 pounds, is on steady progress to reach her post-surgery weight goal, and is enjoying life in ways she has not in years.

“For one thing, I love shopping for clothes now,” Riley said. “But I am just going to the thrift store, because I am still losing weight and don’t want to spend too much on clothes that, hopefully, will no longer fit.”

Read the rest of Riley's story here

Related Stories

Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
There are 10 nurses in the picture.

And we have many more pediatric primary care providers in Northeast Ohio. You can meet some of them here.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The five differences are:
– Phone color
– Coat pocket
– Stethoscope earpiece color
– Stethoscope bell dot
– Clipboard paper color

Need help finding a doctor, choosing a location or getting a general question about Akron Children's answered? Call us or fill out the form and we'll help in any way we can.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The two matching doctors are 9 and 14.

With virtual visits, you can see our pediatric experts from the comfort of home or wherever you are.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The correct path:
The Correct Path
We offer many ways to get pediatric care all over Northeast Ohio. Use this page to find the right kind of care and the most convenient location for you.