Metro Bariatrics - Amir Moazzez MD, FACS

Day Of Surgery

On the day of your procedure, you will need to come and check in to the hospital at least one and a half hour before the time of surgery. Your surgeon and the anesthesiologist will meet you in the preoperative area to answer any additional questions you may have. Just before you are taken into the operating room, you’ll be given antibiotics to minimize the risk of infection and heparin (a blood thinner) to prevent blood clots from forming.

Pneumatic leg pumps will be placed around your calves or feet before surgery. These will inflate and deflate to keep the blood circulating in your legs in order to prevent clots. It is important that you keep the feet pumps on while you are in bed during your entire hospital stay.

In the operating room, after you’re under general anesthesia, a orogastric tube may be passed down through the mouth to deflate the stomach. A urinary catheter may be inserted to drain your bladder. The orogastric tube will be removed at the end of the operation. The urinary catheter will remain in place until the next morning.

Immediately after surgery, you will be taken to the recovery room, also called the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU). Once you have recovered from the anesthetics, you will be transferred to the Surgical Unit. On rare occasions, a patient may require Intensive Care (ICU) monitoring for significant respiratory problems.

If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, you may need to remain on the ventilator (breathing machine) in the PACU or the ICU until you are breathing well on your own. If you use a continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machine at home, you should bring your CPAP machine with you on the day of the surgery for use during your hospital stay. You will be required to get out of bed as soon as possible to improve your lung function and to prevent blood clots from forming in your legs.

This should happen as early as six to eight hours after surgery, but definitely no later than the morning after surgery. In addition, you’ll be shown breathing exercises that will lessen your risk of pneumonia. It’s very important to follow instructions regarding these exercises.

The following day after surgery, all patients will receive an upper gastrointestinal X-ray study (UGI) to detect possible leaks or the check the position of the band in gastric banding patients. You will take nothing by mouth until this test is done.

Most gastric bypass patients are ready to go home on the second day after surgery.

Various techniques are used for pain management while you are in the hospital.

Medications

You will be advised about resuming your current medicines before you leave the hospital. In addition to your regular medications, you’ll take an acid reducer for two to three months to prevent ulcers in the pouch. You’ll be required to take multivitamins/minerals and calcium/vitamin D indefinitely. Most small pills such as thyroid or blood pressure medications can be taken whole. Larger pills such as diabetic pills or calcium pills must be broken into smaller pieces before ingesting. Most capsules can be taken whole. Your surgeon or dietician can further help clarify which medications you need to take and how to take them.