Bariatric & Minimally-Invasive Surgery

Bariatric and Minimally-Invasive Surgery

Over the past few decades, minimally-invasive procedures have become increasingly more common in hospitals across the US and around the world. Because minimally-invasive surgeries require only small incisions, most patients experience a faster recovery period with less pain and shorter hospital stays.

The surgeons of the Bariatric and Minimally-Invasive Surgery Section serve patients who are obese or patients with gastrointestinal issues that can be treated laparoscopically (including robot-assisted). Procedures performed by surgeons in this section include:

  • Gastric Bypass
  • Sleeve Gastrectomies
  • Endoscopic Balloon Placements
  • Endoscopic gastric bypass revision
  • Gastric band removal
  • Anti-Reflux Procedures (Nissen Fundoplication, Linx, etc)
  • Paraesophageal and hiatal hernia repairs
  • Inguinal and Ventral Hernia Repairs
  • Cholecystectomy (Gall-bladder removal)
  • Enterra™ for gastroparesis
  • Peroral Endoscopic Myotomy
  • Heller myotomy
  • Laparoscopic small bowel resection
  • EGD (esophagogastroduedenoscopies) and colonoscopies

The Section of Bariatric and Minimally-Invasive Surgery at Stanford is dedicated to providing the highest level of technical expertise while focused on a patient-centric approach. Our bariatric surgeons work closely with nutritionists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and psychologists to provide multidisciplinary weight loss support including non-surgical weight loss therapies. Additionally, we anticipate the opening of our Redwood City Digestive Health Clinic in July 2018, which will reinforce our already close collaboration with our colleagues in gastroenterology in the treatment of digestive and esophageal diseases.

Bariatric and Minimally-Invasive Surgery Patient-Care Team

Assistant Professor of Surgery (General Surgery) at the Stanford University Medical Center


Dr. Azagury is a minimally invasive surgeon specializing in digestive surgery, bariatric surgery and general surgery. Dr. Azagury was trained both in Europe and the United States and is board certified in surgery in Switzerland, his home country. After completing his residency in Switzerland, he undertook a research fellowship focusing on novel minimally invasive techniques at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston. He continued his time at the same institution and completed a clinical fellowship in bariatric and minimally invasive surgery. Thriving to innovate in patient care, he pursued further training in medical innovation at Stanford University where he was the 2011-2012 Grube Biodesign fellow. He then returned to Switzerland to become responsible for bariatric surgery at Geneva University Hospital. Dr. Azagury combines his clinical experience and his passion for innovation to focus on reducing the impact of surgical procedures on patients. He thrives in multidisciplinary collaborations and is always interested in surgical teaching and mentoring. Alongside his clinical practice, Dr. Azagury is a faculty member at the Stanford Center for Biodesign. He is the director for education of the Biodesign Fellowship program and co-directs the Japan Biodesign partnership program. He is also a faculty member and teaches in multiple medical innovation programs across Europe. He is the father of three and is fluent in French and Spanish.
Emile Holman Professor in Surgery


Dr. Mary T. Hawn is the Stanford Medicine Professor of Surgery and Chair of the Department of Surgery at Stanford University. Dr. Hawn, a native of Michigan, received her education and surgical training at the University of Michigan. Her clinical area of specialty is minimally invasive foregut surgery. Dr. Hawn is a funded health services researcher and her projects focus on quality measurement and policy in surgical populations. She is a Director for the American Board of Surgery and serves on the editorial board of Annals of Surgery, Journal of the American College of Surgeons, Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery and the American Journal of Surgery. Dr. Hawn has several additional leadership roles in American Surgery including Chair of the American College of Surgeons Scientific Forum Committee and as a Trustee and Treasurer for the Surgical Society of the Alimentary Tract. She is the co-Editor of a new surgical textbook Operative Techniques in Surgery.
Associate Professor of Surgery (General Surgery) at the Stanford University Medical Center


James R. Korndorffer, Jr. MD MHPE FACS is Associate Professor and Vice Chair of Education in the Department of Surgery at Stanford University. Previously he served as Vice chair of Surgery at Tulane University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans. While at Tulane he also was the Surgery Residency Program Director, the assistant dean for Graduate medical education and the Medical Director of the Tulane Center for Advanced Medical Simulation and Team Training. He received his undergraduate degree in Biomedical Engineering from Tulane University, his Medical Degree from the University of South Florida College of Medicine and his Masters in Health Professions Education from the University of Illinois Chicago. His general surgery residency was completed at The Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, North Carolina and his Advanced Laparoscopic Fellowship was completed at Tulane University. He is actively involved in numerous national societies including the American College of Surgeons, the Society for Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons, the Association for Surgical Education, and the Association for Program Directors in Surgery. He serves on the American College of Surgeons Committee on Validation of Surgical Knowledge and Skills, SAGES Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery and Development Committees and also serves as the APDS research committee vice chair. Dr. Korndorffer has published over 60 papers in peer reviewed journals, 5 book chapters and has presented at over 100 national meetings. Dr. Korndorffer’s clinical interests include minimally invasive surgery for gastrointestinal disorders and hernias. His research interests include surgical education, surgical simulation, patient safety, and patient care quality.
Clinical Professor, Surgery - General Surgery


James Lau, MD, MHPE, FACS is a general surgeon who specializes in minimally invasive and bariatric surgery. Clinically he specializes in the treatment of achalasia, esophageal reflux, gastroparesis, morbid obesity, and abdominal wall hernias. He performs surgeries through a myriad of techniques including: laparoscopic, robotic, open, and endoscopic platforms. He has been active in medical education at two different institutions since 2004 and has been at Stanford since 2009. He was the associate program director for the surgery residency and is the medical student surgery core clerkship director at the Stanford School of Medicine. He created a simulation center and program for the Department of Surgery at the University of Nevada School of Medicine 12 years ago from the ground up. Upon his arrival to Stanford, he positioned the Goodman Surgical Education Center and the Education Fellowship to new heights of curricular and research rigor. He serves as a mentor for the surgical education fellows and is the champion for many medical education initiatives for the Department of Surgery at Stanford. Since becoming the Assistant Dean for Clerkship Education for the Stanford School of Medicine, he has made improving the educational environment for medical students and coordinating support and guidance for the struggling student his mission. Dr. Lau’s research interests have culminated into the creation, deployment, and assessment of interdisciplinary in-situ simulations in the Operating Room environment to improve patient safety through teamwork and communication. James completed his Master’s Degree in 2016 in Health Professions Education from the University of Illinois Chicago in order to better serve as an educational mentor for faculty, fellows, residents, and medical students. His passion is to empower others to reach their potential through teaching and mentorship especially through innovation in any form it takes.
Clinical Assistant Professor, Surgery - General Surgery


Dr. Yulia Zak earned her medical degree from SUNY Downstate Medical Center before completing general surgery residency at Stanford University and advanced minimally invasive gastrointestinal and bariatric fellowship training at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Zak is certified by the American Board of Surgery and American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. She has also completed the Stanford Surgical Education and Simulation fellowship and was previously an Assistant Program Director for the general surgery residency program at Mount Sinai Beth Israel. Dr. Zak joined the faculty at Stanford in 2018 and is the current Fellowship Associate Program Director. Her current clinical practice is focused on bariatrics, foregut and abdominal wall procedures. Her academic interests include quality improvement, surgical education, and bariatric outcomes.

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Bariatric & Metabolic Interdisciplinary (BMI) Clinic
Tel: 650-735-5800

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BMI Clinic

900 Blake Wilbur Dr., Garden Level
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