Weight Loss Surgery: After Your Surgery
Woman’s comprehensive bariatric program consists of your surgeon, program coordinator registered nurse, dietician, exercise physiologist, social worker and support group. Each expert is dedicated to providing support for bariatric patients both before surgery and after surgery.
Bariatric surgery is not a quick fix. It’s an ongoing journey toward transforming your health through lifestyle changes. After surgery, you will feel satisfied and fuller with less food. Positive changes in your body, your weight, and your health will occur, if you maintain the diet and exercise routines recommended by your bariatric program.
Recovery varies from patient to patient. Most patients report experiencing slight discomfort, gas and soreness rather than pain after surgery. Woman’s staff knows how to help from assisting you up to walk to administering liquid pain medication that your new stomach can handle.
As with any surgery, there will be a recovery period. Remember that this is a necessary step, and the better care you take during recovery, the more quickly you’ll return to normal activity. The length of recovery will depend on the type of surgery you choose, your overall health and your typical daily activities before surgery. Recovery time can range from a week to a few weeks depending on you, your health and the surgery you choose.
For people suffering from morbid obesity, bariatric surgery can be a powerful tool. Through lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise and a healthy food plan, many patients are able to make a long-term change for better health. We are dedicated to your long term success. Whether it's support group meetings, additional nutritional counseling,or exercise physiology sessions, our staff is able to help you overcome your obstacles.
Band patients will work with their surgeons to have their band adjusted starting at six weeks after surgery and will continue band maintenance as often as needed for the individual patient. Bypass and sleeve patients typically see their surgeons for three to five follow-up appointments the first year, then once per year. Over time, gastric bypass patients will need regular checks for anemia (low red blood cell count) and vitamin B12, folate, and iron levels.
Exercise and resuming normal activities
Exercise is a crucial part of achieving your weight loss and health goals. Woman’s is centered on you with our comprehensive approach to helping you achieve your goals. As the area’s premier women-only fitness facility, the Fitness Club stands apart from other clubs by offering services and programs specifically designed for the unique fitness, rehabilitation and wellness needs of women. Your surgeon will advise you of how to ease into exercise regimen after surgery and will release you from any activity restrictions during a follow-up visit. Many patients return to normal levels of activity within three to six weeks of surgery.
Most pills or capsules are small enough to pass through the new stomach pouch. At first, your doctor may suggest that medications be taken in crushed or liquid form. As a general rule, ask your surgeon before taking any medication.
Eating simple sugars (such as refined sugar, honey, and corn syrup) or high-fat foods can cause dumping syndrome in patients who have had gastric bypass surgery. This occurs when these products, which have a small particle size, are “dumped” from the stomach into the intestine at a quickly. Water is pulled into the intestine from the bloodstream to dilute the sugar load. This flush of water causes symptoms that can include diarrhea, rapid heart rate, hot flashes or sweating and clammy skin, and dizziness.
Long-term benefits of weight loss surgery
Studies show that bariatric surgery can effectively improve and resolve many weight-related health conditions. A review of more that 22,000 bariatric surgery patients showed:
- Improvement in or complete resolution of conditions including type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and sleep apnea
- 61.2% reduction of excess weight
It is recommended you wait at least one year after the surgery before a pregnancy. Approximately one year postoperatively, your body should be fairly stable (from a weight and nutrition standpoint), and you should be able to carry a normally nourished fetus. Consult your surgeon as you plan for pregnancy.