If you are experiencing flu-like or COVID-19 symptoms, call us at 503-814-0099 before visiting any of our locations. Learn more.

Success stories

Meet others who had great results

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. It’s true. You can read all day about how bariatric surgery works, but nothing compares to seeing how real people have changed themselves for the better.

Those patients all started where you are today—and look at them now! With the help of surgery and lifestyle changes, and with the support of the Salem Health team, they’ve accomplished their weight-loss goals.

Below, they share in their own words how much bariatric surgery at Salem Health has meant to them.


Erica tried countless diets, then she found a better way to lose weight.

Erica J. used to weigh 339 pounds. She remembers feeling frustrated she couldn’t keep up with her kids.

“I really struggled to just take them for walks,” Erica said. “I became the parent that sat on the sidelines at birthday parties and would wave and take pictures and tell myself it was okay. But it's not.”

“I know as a mom, I needed almost permission to take care of myself,” she said.

“I had tried probably every kind of diet, every kind of new thing that came out, and I would lose weight. I would lose it — 50, 70 pounds and I'd gain it right back,” Erica said.

Her doctor encouraged her to explore the idea of weight loss surgery. That led her to the Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center.


Elizabeth’s life-changing weight loss journey.

When she was 47-years-old, Elizabeth C. M., had trouble with her body's inability to do what most people consider simple everyday activities.

It was challenging her to do everything from tying her shoes or cutting her nails — to simply doing her job. “I work in the fields and always need to be bent over — and I couldn’t do that. I had to work on my knees,” said Elizabeth.

Those lingering limitations convinced her to have weight loss surgery at the Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center.

After her surgery, Elizabeth noticed she was losing weight, which motivated her to pay close attention to her nutrition.

Elizabeth has lost more than 100 pounds since her surgery. Today, she’s able to do many things she wasn’t able to do before.


After bariatric surgery, Steve didn't need his diabetes medication.

Steve M. faced a life-changing decision in 2018. He weighed 339 pounds at the time.

He says his diabetes was out of control. Steve also had three prior surgeries on his ankles — he lost a baby toe, and his left ankle was collapsing.

“It's like — Dude, wake the heck up! — I had to do something to save myself,” said Steve.

He decided to look into weight loss surgery. His research ultimately led him to the Salem Health Bariatric Surgery Center.

“I said, Sign me up! It's the best thing I've ever done,” said Steve.

Now, more than three years after his bariatric surgery, Steve discovered his health has improved in many ways.


A woman lifting weights in front of a gym mirror.
Stephanie’s story: I have a new sense of adventure

When Stephanie stood beside her father at a family picnic a while back, he didn’t recognize her. When she got his attention, his eyes widened.

“Dad, it’s me, Steph!” she laughed. “Wow, you look like you did in high school,” he told his 41-year-old daughter. She loves that memory … and how she feels and looks 90 pounds lighter after a sleeve gastrectomy at Salem Health’s Bariatric Surgery Center.

She had to replace everything but her socks. Even her shoes shrank from size 9 to 7.5.

Stephanie tried every diet, always gaining it back. As a young mother, she was already battling arthritis. A friend had done “the sleeve” and encouraged her to look into it. After the intro session and meeting her new doctor, she was sold.