Dr. Karl Byrne, a native of Ireland, obtained his medical degree at The Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland. After initial training in surgery in Ireland and England, he came to the Medical College of Virginia, as a research fellow, and completed his surgical residency at MCV. While a resident at MCV, Dr. Byrne developed an interest in weight loss surgery, under the tutelage of Dr. Harvey Sugerman, a world-renowned surgeon in this specialty. After residency, Dr. Byrne came to the Medical University of South Carolina, as a trauma and critical care surgeon. Because of a need to provide weight loss surgery to morbidly obese patients in the area, Dr. Byrne started a small program at MUSC in 1992, with the help of Dr. Patrick O’Neill, from the Weight Management Center. Over the course of the next ten years, with increased awareness of the benefits of weight loss surgery to patients with morbid obesity, the program has grown exponentially. Dr. Byrne introduced the laparoscopic approach to gastric bypass weight loss surgery procedures in 1999.
Dr. Byrne currently practices as a general surgeon, with an interest in weight loss surgery. Eighty percent of his practice is comprised of weight loss surgery cases and revisions. He has performed over 1,000 gastric bypass procedures. Dr. Byrne is board-certified, by the American Board of Surgery, and also is a fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons, in Ireland. He is a member of the American Society for Bariatric Surgery and the medical director of the weight loss surgery program at MUSC. The weight loss surgery program at MUSC is designated as a Center of Excellence by the American Society for Bariatric Surgery. Dr. Byrne enjoys teaching, and has won several teaching awards, including a Golden Apple.