Recovery After Weight Loss Surgery
Pre-op phone call
What do I bring to hospital?
- Medicare card
- Health fund details
- Medications in original packaging clearly labelled.
- Sleep wear/loose comfortable clothing & protective, non slip footwear.
- Medical devices or walking aids.
- You may take electronic devices such as as a laptop or ipad but this is at your own risk and responsibility.
What about pain and pain management?
Wound discomfort and pain after surgery is expected and normal. Other complaints of pain including shoulder tip pain is also normal. This occurs because during surgery carbon dioxide gas is used and this stretches the diaphragm. This should settle down within 24 to 48 hrs.
During your hospital stay, your pain will be assessed and analgesic medications will be prescribed and regularly offered and administered to you. Remember experiencing some discomfort is normal providing it is TOLERABLE. If your perceived pain become intolerable notify your attending nurse so they can give you additional pain relief.
It is is also important that prior to discharge, it is crucial that you discuss with your surgeon what analgesic medications you will be prescribed to take home with you.
What routine medication can I take?
If you are diabetic and take oral hypoglycaemics or insulin you must ask your surgeon during your pre-operative consultation if you are required to make any changes to the dosages of your medication or withhold any prior to your surgery. Additionally, post operative and prior to your discharge from hospital please ensure to check with your surgeon if you recommence any of diabetic medications or continue to withhold these. If your diabetes is managed by a endocrinologist please inform your surgeon during your pre-op consultation.
How do I do wound care?
What is my post-operative diet?
For patients who have had other gastrointestinal surgery it is a good idea to commence small frequent meals of a soft diet which is easy to digest.
For all other general surgical patients you may eat and drink as tolerated , aiming 2- 3 litres of water daily.
What about excercise?
During your hospital stay its important to walk within the ward and sit out in the chair and practice deep breathing and coughing exercises. These exercises expand your chest and allow good air entry into your lungs. This helps with your breathing, clear your lungs, and lower the risk of developing a chest infection.
You may find you are feeling fatigued easily for a week or two after your surgery. This can be a side effect of the surgery, general anaesthetic and analgesic medications. Rest, as necessary but remember it is important to mobilise as much as possible.
How soon can I return to work?
If you require a medical certificate or a carers certificate please advise your surgeon during your hospital stay or at your 2 week follow up post operative appointment.
Is constipation normal?
If you have not had a bowel motion for 3 days post surgery you may want to consider drinking prune juice or adding a gentle laxative . I recommend benefibre, lactulose or movicol. All available at pharmacies without a prescription. Also, ensure you are drinking adequate amounts of water daily.