Bariatric Physicians | Weight Loss and Bariatric Surgery in NC | Cape Fear Valley Health
Bariatric Weight Loss Program
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Bariatric Physicians

At Cape Fear Valley Medical Center, our extensive team of board-certified surgeons help deliver exceptional and compassionate care to patients who come to us from across Southeastern North Carolina and beyond.

James Classen, M.D., FACS

James Classen, M.D., serves as the Supervising Medical Director for Cape Fear Valley Health's Bariatric and Wellness Program.

Dr. Classen received his medical degree from Medical University of South Carolina. He completed his residency in Surgery at Dwight David Eisenhower Army Medical Center in Fort Gordon, Georgia. He is a Diplomate with the American Board of Surgery, a fellow of the American College of Surgeons. and a member of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. He is past Chief of Staff and Chief of Surgery for the Cape Fear Valley Health System.

Dr. Classen worked as a surgeon for more than 36 years before his retirement in fall of 2022. He performed or participated in more than 2000 weight loss surgeries during his career and provides excellent oversight for the program.

Ovie Appresai, M.D., FACS

Ovie Appresai, M.D., is a board-certified general surgeon who graduated from the University of Benin in Nigeria in 1995. He completed a surgical residency in Nigeria in 2005. That same year he moved to the United States and started a general surgical residency at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons at Harlem Hospital Center. He then completed a fellowship for Advanced Gastrointestinal Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgery at the University of South Florida in Tampa in 2011.

Dr. Appresai has been in practice since 2011 and has interests in foregut and bariatric surgery, hernias, thyroid and endocrine procedures, breast, general gastrointestinal and minimally invasive surgery. He is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons, the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.

Ijeoma Acholonu Ejeh, M.D., FACS

Ijeoma Ejeh, M.D., is a board-certified general surgeon who graduated from medical school at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City in 1994.

Dr. Ejeh completed a surgical internship at St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital in New York City in 1995 and went on to complete her general surgery residency at Howard University Hospital in Washington, D.C. in 2002. Before finishing her surgical residency, Dr. Ejeh did transplant bench research at Hahnemann University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from 1997 to 1999 where she published papers and assisted in writing NIH research grants. In 2003, she went on to complete specialty training in Advanced Laparoscopy and Bariatric Surgery at Peachtree Surgical and Bariatrics in Atlanta, Georgia.

Dr. Ejeh moved to Fayetteville in 2007. Her special interests are laparoscopic gastric bypass, stomach surgery, gastric banding and sleeve gastrectomy, as well as advanced laparoscopy, endoscopy and thyroid surgery.

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