FAQ-Weight Loss

Click on the questions to reveal answers.

Q: How long will I be in the hospital after surgery? [+/-]

A: Your length of stay is determined by how well you progress following your procedure.  The average length of stay is one (1) night.

Q: How long will it take to recover after surgery? [+/-]

A: You should be able to walk the same day as your surgery. As all of our surgeries are either laparoscopic or robotic, pain is generally minimal. What most patients find to be most challenging post-surgery is adjusting to a new schedule of vitamin, fluid and protein intake. Almost all patients return to work after three (3) weeks.

Q: How much weight will I lose? [+/-]

A: Weight loss results vary and depend on several things. For many individuals, the majority of weight loss occurs within the first six (6) months after surgery. However, weight loss surgery alone is NOT a miracle cure and you will need to incorporate other measures.

It is very important that you set achievable weight loss goals from the beginning. Losing two to three pounds a week in the first year after your surgery is possible, but one pound a week is more likely. Twelve to 18 months after your procedure, weekly weight loss is usually less. Remember that you should lose weight gradually. Losing weight too fast can create a number of health risks. Your main goal is to achieve weight loss that prevents, improves or resolves health problems related to severe obesity.

Q: Does surgery limit any physical activity? [+/-]

A: No. Once our office clears you for exercise after surgery, it is STRONGLY recommended that you follow a consistent exercise regimen. Exercise is one of the keys to making your weight loss surgery effective. Without exercise, you will not reach your full weight loss potential.

Q: Will I need plastic surgery for the surplus skin when I have lost a lot of weight? [+/-]

A: Not necessarily. As a rule, plastic surgery won’t be considered for at least a year or two after your procedure. Sometimes your skin will mold itself around the new body tissue. You should allow the skin time to adjust before considering additional surgery. You should also work to achieve your weight goals prior to seeing a plastic surgeon so that surgery is only needed once and not repetitively.

Q: Will I feel hungry or deprived after surgery? [+/-]

A: No, you should not feel deprived after surgery. One of the benefits of weight loss surgery is a sense of fullness after eating smaller portions. All patients will experience fullness with smaller portion sizes after surgery. Hunger is not a bad thing, as it is your body’s natural reminder to eat another meal. Some patients have a decreased sense of hunger after surgery and others do not. Both are normal and neither is bad. The most important thing is getting in your required fluid and protein intake by the end of the day.

Q: What about pregnancy? [+/-]

A: Pregnancy can be very safe after weight loss surgery and you can have a very healthy baby!  After successfully losing weight, you will be at less risk for many obesity-related conditions that can occur during pregnancy, including gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension, preeclampsia and low birth weight. We recommend waiting at least 1.5 to 2 years after your surgery to conceive so that you can first achieve and maintain weight loss.

Q: Will I need to take vitamin supplements? [+/-]

A: Yes! All patients undergoing weight loss surgery must plan on taking vitamin supplements LIFELONG, as this is very important to avoid permanent effects from vitamin deficiencies.  At the very minimum, you should plan on (and budget for) taking a multivitamin with iron twice daily and calcium citrate (500 mg) three times per day.

Q: What about other medication? [+/-]

A: You should be able to take prescribed medication. You may need to do things like break big tablets in half or crush them and mix them in applesauce. You should always ask your doctor or a pharmacist about ways you can safely take your medications. Some medications may be available in liquid form and others you might not be able to crush or break.

Q: What if I go out to eat? [+/-]

A: If you eat out, order only a small amount of food, such as an appetizer. Eat slowly and chew all food thoroughly. You might want to let your host or hostess know in advance that you cannot eat very much food. You may also have to avoid thick breads and heavy meats like steak and chops.

Q: What about alcohol? [+/-]

A: Remember that alcohol has a high number of calories. It also breaks down vitamins. An occasional glass of wine or other alcoholic beverage, though, is not considered harmful to weight loss. Patients are more susceptible to the effects of alcohol after surgery.

Q: Can I eat anything in moderation? [+/-]

A: After your stomach has healed, you may eat most foods that don’t cause you discomfort. However, because you can only eat a little, it is important to include foods full of important vitamins and nutrients such as those recommended in the educational materials you receive and advised by your surgeon and dietitian. If you eat foods that contain lots of sugar and fat or drink liquids full of empty calories such as milkshakes, the effect of your surgery may be greatly reduced or canceled. You may even gain weight.

Q: Will I experience constipation? [+/-]

A: Constipation can be common immediately after surgery due to the changes in your diet such as low fiber, high protein intake and decreased activity levels, as well as potential use of pain medication. If difficulties arise, let us know as soon as possible so we can help you.

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