Life After Surgery

Diet

The modifications made to your gastrointestinal tract will require permanent changes in your eating habits that must be adhered to for successful weight loss. Postsurgery dietary guidelines will vary by surgeon. You may hear of other patients who are given different guidelines following their bariatric surgery. It is important to remember that every surgeon does not perform the same bariatric surgery procedure and that the dietary guidelines will be different for each surgeon and each type of procedure. What is most important is that you adhere strictly to your surgeon’s recommended guidelines.

The following are some of the generally accepted dietary guidelines a bariatric surgery patient may encounter:

  • When eating solid food, it is essential that you chew thoroughly. You will npt be able to eat chunk of meat if they are not ground or chewed thoroughly
  • Do not drink fluids while eating
  • Omit sweets and other high calorie foods
  • Omit carbonated drinks, milk shakes, high-fat food and foods with high fiber content
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Limits snacking between meals

Going back to work

Your ability to resume presurgery levels of activity will vary according to your physical condition. the nature of the activity, and the type of bariatric surgery you had. Many patients return to full presurgery levels of activity within 6 weeks of their procedure. Patients who have had a minimally invasive laparoscopic procedure may e able to return to these activities within a few weeks.

Birth control and pregnancy

It is strongly advised that women of childbearing age use the most effective forms of birth control during the first 16 to 24 months after bariatric surgery. The added demands pregnancy places on your body and the potential for fetal damage make this a most important requirement.

Long-term follow-up

Although the short-term effects of bariatric surgery are well understand, there are still question to be answered about the longer-term effects on nutrition and body systems. Nutritional deficiencies that occur over the course of many years will need to be monitored. Over time, you will need periodic checks for anemia (low red blood cell count will initially be conducted every 3 to 6 months, or as needed, and then every 1 to 2 years. Follow-up care is recommended for life.

Support groups

The widespread use of support groups has provided bariatric surgery patients with an excellent opportunity to discuss their various personal or other issues. Most learn, for example, that bariatric surgery will not immediately resolve existing emotional issues or heal the years of damage that morbid obesity might have had on their emotional well-being