The #1 goal of our Orange County weight loss surgery program is to achieve not just good, but excellent, industry-leading patient outcomes. By always prioritizing excellent surgery and patient care, we have established a long record (>2500 operations since 2002) of weight loss results and complication statistics that rank among the best in the weight loss surgery field.*
Excellent Weight Loss Surgery Outcomes
Patient outcomes after weight loss surgery – weight loss results, complication rates – vary over a wide range, from excellent to poor, between different surgeons and programs. Because of this, choice of surgeon/program is an important decision.*
Dr. Oliak and his Orange County weight loss surgery program have an established record of weight loss results and complication statistics that rank among the best in the weight loss surgery field.* To read more about outcomes after weight loss surgery, and to read about our gastric bypass and gastric sleeve outcomes statistics, see our outcomes page.
Key elements of our Orange County weight loss surgery program include:
Expert Bariatric Surgeon
Dr. Oliak is board-certified, fellowship-trained in laparoscopic weight loss surgery, and experienced (>2500 operations).*
More about Dr. Oliak
Quality Weight Loss Surgery
In Dr. Oliak’s experience, quality weight loss surgery is the #1 key for achieving excellent outcomes. How the surgery is done largely determines complication risk and is a key determinant of weight loss results.*
A recent study (Ibrahim et al, JAMA 2017) found that the rate of serious complications after weight loss surgery varied 17-fold (0.6% – 10.3%) across 165 bariatric surgery centers of excellence nationwide. Why? Because the operations are done differently by different surgeons at the different programs.
Read study abstract
Similarly, studies published by different surgeons report widely different average weight loss results after both gastric sleeve and gastric bypass surgery, ranging from excellent to poor.* Why? Again, a main reason is because the operations are done differently by the different surgeons.
About gastric sleeve weight loss
Why don’t all surgeons do the operations in the way that results in the best outcomes? Because there is no consensus on what constitutes the best way. Bariatric surgeons, much like plastic surgeons, must come up with their own best way based on their training and experience.
The problem with this is that there is a lack of surgeon accountability for quality and outcomes (surgeons’ weight loss results and complication rates are almost never known by patients, and frequently not even known by surgeons themselves, unless they make the effort to track their own outcomes statistics), and insurance reimbursement incentivizes speed and number of surgeries.
In Dr. Oliak’s experience, achieving excellent outcomes has to be the goal, because if it is not, it doesn’t happen. Without a focus on outcomes by the surgeon, it is natural to focus instead on speed of surgery and number of surgeries, because this increases insurance collections.
Dr. Oliak’s #1 goal has always been to achieve the best outcomes possible for his patients. By closely tracking his patient/surgery/outcomes data, he has learned over the course of his career how to achieve excellent surgical outcomes. The fundamental key is time – time to do more careful, more exact, more meticulous surgery. For sleeve gastrectomy, time to fashion a smaller, more symmetric, more exact sleeve. For gastric bypass, time to fashion a smaller pouch and smaller pouch/intestine connection.*
One of the most important aspects of our Orange County weight loss surgery program is allocating the necessary time to do high-quality surgery. Dr. Oliak limits his number of weight loss surgeries to 3 per operating day (often surgeons do 6-10 operations per day). If an operation is anticipated to take longer than the typical operation, such as for a higher BMI patient or a revision operation (revision operations can take 4-5 hours), Dr. Oliak limits the number of operations to two.
Patient Education and Follow-up
In Dr. Oliak’s experience, thorough education and frequent follow-up are the #2 key and #3 key for achieving excellent outcomes.*
Surgery is a tool that helps patients to lose weight. To use the weight loss surgery tool effectively to achieve an excellent long-term weight loss result, patients must establish new eating habits. Education ensures that patients understand what changes need to be made, and follow-up helps to ensure that patients are successful implementing these changes.*
An important component of our Orange County weight loss surgery program is allocating sufficient time for thorough education and frequent follow-up. Dr. Oliak provides several hours of dedicated preoperative and postoperative education time per patient. Dr. Oliak schedules follow-up appointments initially at 1-2 week intervals, and then at 1-3 month intervals depending on the individual patients’ needs. After 1 year, patients are typically seen yearly.
Consistent OR Team
Dr. Oliak uses the same anesthesiologist and operating room team for virtually all operations at his main hospital, Placentia-Linda Hospital. He has worked with the same anesthesiologist for 15 years. Having the same team results in optimized, efficient operations, and prevents mistakes.* Most hospitals, unfortunately, won’t agree to giving surgeons the same team for all operations.
Consistent Surgical Assistants
Dr. Oliak always operates with the same surgical assistants. He has two – a general surgeon, and a physician assistant – and he has worked with both for >10 years. Having experienced assistants results in more efficient and higher quality operations.*
Continuity of Care
Dr. Oiak does patient education and follow-up himself, with infrequent exception. He is also on call for his patients, with infrequent exception, 24-7. This continuity of care results in better patient care than relying on others to do patient education and follow-up.*
Great Customer Service
The #2 goal of our Orange County weight loss surgery program is to provide excellent customer service. We strive to provide a pleasant, efficient, and convenient experience for all patients. Our approach is as follows:
Excellent Office Staff
Our receptionist and surgical coordinator have both worked in the field of weight loss surgery for >10 year, and, like Dr. Oliak, prioritize patients first. When patients are prioritized first, achieving good customer service is easy – the phone gets answered (even during lunch), calls get returned promptly, things get done quickly, etc.
Dedicated surgical coordinator
Having a dedicated surgical coordinator gives patients one point of contact for the entire process of obtaining an insurance authorization, completing all necessary preoperative tests, scheduling all necessary preoperative visits, and scheduling surgery.
Easy appointment scheduling
Because we dedicate significant time to in-office patient care, we generally can schedule office appointments within 1-3 days.
Easy access to Dr. Oliak
Dr. Oliak is easily reachable after business hours by cell phone or text message.
Dr. Oliak and staff are happy to correspond with patients about scheduling, test results, questions, and issues by phone/email/text. Dr. Oliak can do preoperative and follow-up appointments by phone when necessary (e.g. when patients live out of the area).