Weight Loss Physician

Lara Courtenay


I am an NZ trained general practitioner and bariatric physician who has been working with the Weightless specialist team at the MacMurray Centre for the last three years. In this time, my patient-centered, holistic approach has helped hundreds of patients achieve and maintain their weight loss goals.
I have more than a decades’ experience as a GP as well as additional training in cosmetic medicine and skin cancer, having worked in both general practice and hospitals throughout Australasia.
I believe that forming long-term relationships with patients is essential for lasting success, and encourage ongoing reviews of progress to provide the accountability necessary for your goals to be achieved. I am passionate about guiding patients towards better health and well-being through personalised care. At Weightless, we do this by altering treatment plans to best fit our patients.

Areas of expertise:

  • Weight loss medications
  • Womens health including weight gain in menopause and perimenopause
  • Sleep hygiene and mental health conditions associated with addiction and weight gain
  • Skin conditions and skin cancer
  • cosmetic medicine
  • Special interest in teenagers (worked at a Secondary School)
  • Ear, nose and throat conditions


Alasdair Patrick


Dinesh Lal


David Orr

MBChB (Otago), FRACP

Kumudith Ekanayaka

MBChB (Otago), FRACP

As the founder of Weightless and the MacMurray Centre I am excited about innovation and cutting edge weight loss medicine. I believe that patients deserve the very best weight loss treatments the world has to offer and so, I have made it a priority to research and train in new ground breaking technologies.

I previously worked as a Gastroenterologist at Middlemore Hospital and currently serve as the Director of the MacMurray Centre.

I am passionate about helping patients achieve their weight goals, so they feel great about themselves, but also so they can address the health concerns caused by excess weight.

Areas of expertise:

  • Weight management using Spatz and Orbera Gastric Balloons
  • Endoscopy – diagnostic and therapeutic
  • Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease - wireless pH, pH/Impedance, ResTech, High Res Manometry
  • Capsule endoscopy
  • Colorectal cancer- formally trained in CT Colonography
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Liver disease
  • Endoscopic ultrasound
  • Stretta

I was trained in New Zealand in Gastroenterology, Hepatology, Liver transplant and Internal Medicine. I have also developed a special interest in endoscopic bariatric therapy for overweight and obesity. I have pioneered the use of AspireAssist Therapy in New Zealand and also performed the first Spatz Gastric Balloon procedure here.

Areas of expertise:

  • Endoscopic bariatric therapy (for overweight and obesity)
  • Spatz and Orbera Gastric Balloons
  • Aspire Assist Aspiration Therapy
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Liver diseases including Hepatitis B & C and investigation of liver dysfunction
  • Dyspepsia, reflux disease and coeliac disease
  • Hepato-pancreato-biliary diseases

I am a NZ trained gastroenterologist with a broad range of experience in all aspects of gastroenterology. I have a particular interest in therapeutic and bariatric endoscopy, and have trained in specialised endoscopic weight loss procedures, including intragastic balloons and endoscopic sleeve surgery. As well as working at the MacMurray Centre, I am currently employed as a consultant gastroenterologist and liver transplant hepatologist at Auckland Hospital.

Areas of expertise:

  • Endoscopy – diagnostic and therapeutic gastroscopy and colonoscopy – ERCP and spyglass
  • Endoscopic weight loss procedures – intragastric balloon and endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty (ESG)
  • Colorectal cancer and bowel cancer screening
  • Functional bowel disease; dyspepsia and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Coeliac disease
  • Liver disease: all liver disease; subspecialist and research interest in NAFLD, portal hypertension, biliary disease, PBC, viral hepatitis and hepatobiliary malignancy
  • Pancreatic disease
  • Fibroscan®

I am a New Zealand trained gastroenterologist who grew up in the Waikato and attended Otago Medical School. I currently work at Middlemore Hospital as a consultant gastroenterologist and general physician and have a strong role in medical student teaching.

I have also trained in Gastric Balloons for weight loss and am passionate about helping patients find freedom from weight related health concerns.

Areas of expertise:

  • Weight management using Spatz and Orbera Gastric Balloons
  • Endoscopy – diagnostic and therapeutic
  • Liver Disease – particular interest in alcohol related liver disease
  • Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Inflammatory bowel disease


Jennifer Chang

NZ Registered Dietitian

Miriam Mullard

NZ Registered Dietitian, BSc Hons Nutrition, MSc Dietetics

Priscilla Natalia

NZ Registered Dietitian, Professional Teaching Fellow at University of Otago

I am a NZ registered dietitian passionate about for surgical and gastro-related nutrition. I qualified at the University of Otago and spent the following six years working as clinical dietitian at Palmerston North Hospital. I have since worked for ten years at Middlemore Hospital in ICU and as a surgical dietitian. I enjoy working with my clients to achieve their weight loss and nutrition goals. My approach is holistic, evidence based and tailored to your individual situation.

Areas of expertise:

  • Bariatric Dietetics and Endoscopic Weight Loss
  • Surgical nutritional support such as diverticular disease, post bowel resections
  • Inflammatory bowel syndrome, Irritable bowel disease including FODMAP diet and coeliac disease
  • Weight management
  • Weight gain
  • General healthy lifestyle

I qualified at King’s College, London and began my career in some of London’s top teaching hospitals before moving into private practice and academia. As Dietetic lead at MacMurray I manage a team of highly skilled dietitians who share my values and are driven to help clients reach their goals.

My approach is to listen and empower you to make practical changes to improve your physical health, well-being and happiness. I work with you to develop bespoke nutrition plans, tailored to your unique needs, challenges and lifestyle. Providing evidence based nutrition is only part of the process, I give you practical advice to implement today to keep you on track for good.

Areas of expertise:

  • Bariatric Dietetics and Endoscopic Weight Loss
  • Weight Management
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome and the low FODMAP diet
  • Coeliac Disease
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Cardiovascular health
  • Vegan and Vegetarian diets
  • Women’s health, PCOS and Pregnancy

I qualified at the University of Otago and began my career at Auckland Hospital. I then worked in paediatric nutrition at both Starship Children’s Hospital and Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London. After returning to New Zealand, I worked as a professional practice fellow for the Masters of Dietetic students at the University of Otago whilst maintaining clinical practice in both paediatric and adult clinical nutrition.

As well as being a part of the Weightless team at the MacMurray Centre, I currently work in private practice for ACC providers across Auckland. I use an evidence-based approach to provide practical and achievable nutritional strategies that support your overall health and well-being.

Areas of expertise:

  • Functional gut disorders including Low FODMAP diet for Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Endoscopic weight loss nutrition
  • Weight management
  • Cardiovascular Health
  • General lifestyle nutrition including vegetarian and vegan diets
  • Picky and restricted eaters
  • Faltering growth in children
  • General children’s nutrition (infants, children & adolescents)
  • Childhood weight management
  • Functional gut disorders including simplified low FODMAP diet
  • Paediatric Neuro-disability


Catherine Kissel

Registered Psychologist

I have worked within the specialist area of weight loss for the past 15 years, supporting people with practical and effective strategies to optimise their results. As a psychologist, understanding the impact of mood, anxiety, stress, trauma and food addiction on weight gain allows us to implement individualised programmes and design the right support for you to achieve your goals.

My background is in mental health and addictions. I have worked clinically for over 30 years and held senior positions in WDHB as well as teaching positions at the University of Auckland and AUT.

Areas of expertise:

  • Bariatrics and Endoscopic Weight Loss
  • Weight Management
  • Eating disorders
  • Anxiety and Depression
  • Managing stress implicated in weight gain