Amy Johnson, MD, FACS, FASMBS is the Pikeville Medical Center (PMC) Bariatric (weight loss) Surgery Department Medical Director. She completed her medical school education and residency program at Wake Forest University. She is a United States Army and Air Force Veteran and is board certified by the American Board of Surgery.

Dr. Johnson says people are often under the impression that weight loss surgery is a cosmetic “quick and easy fix” for losing weight.  It does not take long for her to dispel that misconception. She explains that obesity is a disease that affects the body in extremely harsh ways. It can cause high blood pressure, diabetes, extreme joint pain, sleep apnea, and even infertility.

The process of fighting obesity is a lifelong commitment to improving health. Dr. Johnson’s approach begins with education. Before scheduling an appointment, potential patients are directed to the PMC website for an overview of the program and a clear understanding of the processes and benefits.  Patients undergo a number of tests to determine their overall health condition. If they smoke, they must quit before surgery can be an option.

She says the most effective way for weight loss to be maintained, after surgery, is through physical activity. Most of her patients say they have not exercised in years, but she shows them how to take it one step at a time. A display of tears and cheers have often been seen when her patients cross the finish line at their first Reclaim Your Life 5K, a PMC race she spearheads. Her compassion and dedication to the well-being of her patients go far beyond the exam room and patients say they could not have done it without her. They typically credit Dr. Johnson for giving them a better quality of life plus a longer life with those they love.

Dr. Johnson is one of the very few physicians in the region who performs gastric by-pass surgery, one of the more successful options for patients who are morbidly obese.  For information about weight loss surgery or to make an appointment, please visit PMCWeightlossSurgery.com or call 606-218-2205.