Regardless of the surgical procedure that you are undergoing, you can expect there to be a variety of recovery-related issues to consider. According to the Mayo Clinic, gastric bypass surgery makes significant changes to your digestive system to help you lose weight through the limitation of consumption of food. The procedure will ultimately reduce the amount of physical space that your body has to store food before it is digested. The procedure that is used to develop this effect is the process of creating a small stomach pouch to reduce how much food the stomach can hold, according to the University Of Rochester Medical Center. Also, a bypass is constructed of the duodenum, a small intestine, causing malabsorption. There are two types of gastric bypass surgeries including the roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RGB) and the DISTAL gastric bypass. It is important that you consider the procedure and the recovery requirements well before you decide to embark on the surgery.
Before the Procedure
Change your current diet. One of the best things that you can do to prepare for your upcoming surgery is to start eating differently. You will be restricted significantly during the first few days and weeks after the surgery and changing your diet before you go through the procedure can help you to stay focused on the goal. By changing your diet to the new diet you will be working with in the end, you can improve your chances of success and avoid some the uncomfortable symptoms.
By making sure that you are in the best shape that you can before the procedure, you can decrease the recovery time and discomfort. You may want to consider making changes to the way that you live your life such as taking walks, stopping smoking, stopping drinking alcohol and taking an overall positive outlook on your life. These things combined with positive relationships in your life will provide you with support to help you succeed, according to Realize.com
After the Procedure
- Body aches are to be expected. You can expect to feel flu-like symptoms, fatigue and cold. Your skin may become dry, your hair might thin, and you may experience some hair loss. You may also experience some dramatic mood changes after the procedure, according to the Mayo Clinic.
- You should expect that you will not be able to eat for the first couple of days following the procedure for your digestive system to start to recover. The diet after this point will be particular for the first 12 weeks of your recovery. This will typically include liquids at the beginning followed by ground foods, then soft foods until you are eventually able to eat regular food. You will find that there may be some dietary restrictions regarding the type of foods that you can eat and drink and how much of you can take in.
- Understand the process and procedure thoroughly. It is important that you take the time to learn all that you can about the procedure you are going through and the end results that you can expect. It is important that you understand that you will be the most uncomfortable during the initial stages of recovery when you are extremely restricted in your diet. The pain that you will encounter will vary from day to day. You may find that the pain doesn’t begin as much until the first week of the recovery process. Find out beforehand what you can do to deal with the pain you are going to encounter. If you wait for the pain to get bad, you might find that you are in too much pain for pain management to help you successfully.
- Be careful how you physically push yourself. While exercise can often speed up recovery, according to the University of California San Francisco, you need to be sure you are doing so under the supervision and direction of your physician. You also need to remember that you have to take things slowly and don’t expect too much initially. Mild exercise is the way to go along with stretching and walking. You will find that these small steps can make you feel much better and can ease the discomfort and pain that you might be feeling.
The medical team that is going to help you through the procedure and recovery process will work with you to make sure you fully understand what you should expect. They will go over the expectations you should have post-surgery and will work with you to develop healthy diet plans and appropriate exercise options for post-surgery. Preparing mentally for the surgery and being prepared for the dramatic changes to your lifestyle and your body post-surgery is going to be a big benefit to you and could denote the success of your efforts.
Guide to Gastric Bypass Surgery: