How long is recovery after surgery?
Bariatric surgery is a major procedure, and recovery doesn't happen overnight. As with any major surgery, there will be a recovery period. Recovery periods vary depending on the type of surgery performed. In general, many laparoscopic gastric bypass patients leave the hospital on the second day, and return to work in about three weeks. Your bariatric surgeon will discuss pain management medications that he will provide you with after the surgery. Its important to follow your surgeons postoperative recovery instructions.
How often will I be able to eat?
After the initial recovery period, most patients are instructed to eat 1/4 cup, or 2 ounces, of food per meal. As time goes on, you can gradually eat more as instructed by your medical team. Most people can eat approximately 1 cup of food per meal (with 4 ounces of protein) a year or more post-surgery.
When can I go back to my normal activity level?
Your ability to resume pre-surgery levels of activity depends on your physical condition, the nature of the activity, and the type of bariatric surgery you had. Many patients return to normal levels of activity within three to six weeks of surgery.
How much exercise is needed after bariatric surgery?
Exercise is an important part of success after surgery. You may be encouraged to begin exercising about two weeks after surgery. The type of exercise depends on your overall condition, but the long-term goal is to get 30 minutes of exercise three or more days each week.
What is the long-term follow-up schedule?
Band patients need to work with their surgeons to have their band adjusted several times during the first 12 to 18 months after surgery. Bypass patients typically see their surgeons every few weeks for approximately three months. Thereafter, follow-up visits are scheduled about every three months until one year post operatively. Our program encourages a return visit to the surgeon once a year for life.
Where can I find support?
Most bariatric surgeons will tell you that ongoing support after surgery helps their patients achieve the greatest level of success. The St. Francis Surgical Weight Loss program offers an ongoing support group that gives patients an excellent opportunity to talk about personal issues. Patients help keep each other motivated, celebrate small victories together, and provide perspective on the everyday successes and challenges that patients generally experience. Find a support group meeting >>