He brought his medical training from his native Pakistan to the United States, where he continued learning about medicine at some of the finer facilities in the country.
Today, Dr. Tariq Kahn has expanded his practice in gastroenterology in the Mid-South, which has grown over more than 20 years, and now offers treatment in weight loss and wellness at his clinic in Southaven.
Dr. Khan earlier this year opened his practice, named Premier Physicians Weight Loss and Wellness, as a means of addressing one of Mississippi’s biggest issues, that of obesity.
The state remains ranked at or near the top among the United States for its residents being overweight. Khan said obesity is in itself a health issue, but also is a portal to more important health issues.
“Up to recently, the emphasis was on feeding the manifestation of obesity, which are several diseases,” Khan said. “People used to treat diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol separately. But the root cause of all those things is obesity. So now the focus has shifted to where it is treating obesity to prevent or in some cases reverse those issues.”
Khan graduated from the Dow University of Health Sciences in Karachi, one of the world’s largest cities, in 1990, but followed his family to continue his studies and his medical career in the United States.
“Most of my family was already here in America, as they had settled in Texas,” Khan said. “This was the natural progression to further my career and seek bigger opportunities. I came over here, did my medical training at St. Louis University, then did my gastroenterology fellowship in New Orleans at the LSU Medical Center.”
Khan came to the Mid-South after completing his internship in 1997 and joined a medical group, where he practiced until he decided to begin his own practice in gastroenterology. It was a practice that had him at first working with patients all across the Memphis-Mid-South area.
“Initially I went all over Memphis,” Khan said. “As my practice kind of settled over here in DeSoto County, this was a very good area to settle down.”
Khan has been affiliated with a number of area hospitals and chose to start Premier Physicians Weight Loss and Wellness in Southaven, knowing many of his patients had previously had to go some distance to seek treatment.
“A lot of people from here had to travel all the way to Memphis or places like Cordova or Germantown to get their medications,” Khan said. “So, this was a good place to provide the service to the local population over here, make it convenient for them and do it in a way that’s very streamlined and scientific, compared to what’s happening across the state line.”
Khan said his practice consists of two facets in attacking obesity.
“One is medical weight loss, which includes extensive diet counseling and medications that help people stick to their diet,” Khan said. “They can be prescription medications or national products and we supplement them with supplements, such as protein bars and nutritional protein shakes, things like that. We do a total analysis of the patient’s BMI (Body Mass Index) and body fat analysis and make an individualized program for them.”
Khan said the detail even includes what to buy at the grocery store and what choices to have for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
The second facet brings more of his gastroenterology practice into play and includes a “balloon” procedure to help patients feel more satisfied at the dinner table without digesting excess calories.
Khan said his patients range from those needing help to shed a few pounds for a wedding or class reunion, or those who need a long-term plan of weight loss.
Office hours are from 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday, Thursday and Friday, from 1-5 p.m. on Tuesday and Saturday mornings from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
For more information, call 888-992-3348 or go online to www.premierphysicianswellness.com.
Bob Bakken is Staff Writer and may be reached at 662-429-6397 ext. 240.