Safe and effective recovery after a bariatric surgery procedure requires complete dedication to your health and new lifestyle. Understanding your responsibilities after surgery and following post-surgical instructions will make recovery as smooth and comfortable as possible.
Immediately after surgery, you will be asked to walk around the hospital or surgery center in order to help your body recover more quickly, increase your circulation and avoid the possibility of infection. You will also be placed on a clear liquid diet for up to two weeks. This is indicated to both jumpstart your weight loss and allow your stomach to heal after the procedure. Slowly but surely you will start to progress in your diet and eventually be able to eat solid foods. During this time, you will also be expected to increase the intensity of your exercise. When not exercising, get plenty of rest and stay hydrated as this will help with a speedy recovery.
Of note: wound care is an important part of the short-term post-surgical program. Be sure you understand the principles of dressing a wound. You should wash your hands thoroughly before handling or changing dressings and you should change the dressing at the interval described in your post-surgical planning guide. Poor wound care can lead to infection.
Between four and six weeks after surgery, your recovery will be progressing quickly and you will have at least one scheduled follow-up appointment with Dr. Lublin. If you have any concerns during this period, it is very important that you contact Dr. Lublin or your primary care physician immediately. Depending on the progression of your recovery and any post-surgical complications, you will be able to return to work within 2 to 4 weeks after surgery. Once at work, it is important that you continue to allow your body to heal and avoid lifting heavy objects or straining. Within 6 to 8 weeks after surgery, you should be able to perform all of your normal and usual activities as you did before surgery.
During your recovery and for the rest of your life, you will be expected to follow a strict diet and exercise regimen that will help you lose weight safely and effectively. This plan will be modified as needed in order to regulate your weight as your body changes. Closely following this post-surgical plan, which will start slowly at first and increase in intensity over time, will help with recovery in the short term, weight loss in the medium term and maintenance of your goal weight over the long term.
Recovery will be uncomfortable at times; however, the results of following your post-surgical care instructions are well worth your effort. If at any point during your recovery you have any questions please be sure to contact our office and if you ever believe you are having a medical emergency, dial 911 immediately.