Townsville couple share weight loss surgery success together

A Townsville husband and wife who both decided to undergo bariatric surgery to control their weight have now dropped a combined total of more than 45kg.

Natalie and Scott Waterson both underwent gastric bypass procedures with upper gastrointestinal and bariatric surgeon Dr Scott Whiting at Mater Private Hospital Townsville in July 2023 – and say the procedure has changed their lives.

Ms Waterson said she was grateful her husband had joined her on the journey.

“Initially, I met with Dr Whiting on my own in February because I was suffering quite badly with reflux and had struggled my whole life with my weight,” she said.

“After I suggested that my husband may be interested Scott came back with me and we both went from there.

“We had a cruise booked at the end of June, so Dr Whiting recommended we go and enjoy a last hurrah before we had our procedures on the same day as each other in July.

“It’s been a really tough journey because it is a significant lifestyle change, but it is for the better and we are so grateful that we did it.

“We’re so lucky we’ve been able to go on this journey together, but there is also fantastic local support available for people who are going it alone.”

Dr Whiting, who has established an online community group for his weight-reduction patients, said long-term support was an important part of bariatric surgery success.

“The surgery itself, while significant, represents only a small part of the patient’s journey,” Dr Whiting said.

“Long-term commitment to dietary, lifestyle and behaviour change is needed to allow patients to achieve durable weight loss and improve their health. However, sustaining this change can be difficult without ongoing support, education and guidance.

“Since I began offering weight loss surgery in Townsville, we have launched an online support community for those who have had had surgery or are preparing for it.  

“This private online group is a safe space for patients to ask questions, share ideas and interact with our team while also making connections with those sharing the same journey. 

“In addition to this, we frequently host Patient Education Evenings, which cover nutrition, exercise and psychology for those who are planning to or have undergone weight loss surgery.”

Ms Waterson said the support provided by Dr Whiting and his team, which includes his dietitian wife Melissa, was exceptional.

“We really could not thank Dr Whiting and Melissa enough for the 24/7 support we had after the procedure,” she said.

“When Scott was in hospital recently for another unrelated procedure, Melissa found out and organised a delivery of protein bars to his room and Dr Whiting dropped in to check on Scott in his room.

“We can’t thank them enough for what they’ve done for us and our futures.”

Dr Scott Whiting will hold a Bariatric Surgery Information Evening for prospective patients on Wednesday 17 January 2024 from 5.30pm at the Mater Conference Centre.

For more information or to register, visit

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