Life After Surgery
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cosmetic-surgery-image-3Bariatric surgeries are, by no stretch of the imagination, a quick fix to obesity issues. Buy acid reflux tablets UK it is only one step of a long journey toward weight loss and is only effective in combination with major lifestyle changes. The difference in the patient’s body after surgery makes many of these lifestyle changes easier than they would be otherwise, particularly the changes regarding eating habits. Hopefully, patients will not have to go through these changes alone, but will have a support system that involves family, other loved ones, and a team of professionals, such as your surgeon and/or family physician. Positive changes in a patient’s body and weight are going to occur, but it is a slow process, so patience is required throughout the recovery process.

In the early days following the procedure, patients may not feel very different than before the surgery. Many individuals find themselves asking what exactly has changed. Immediate discomfort can be expected in the recovery area following the procedure. Unfortunately, this discomfort can last for several days and many patients feel worse before they begin to feel relief from the initial pain.

Some doctors will provide patient-controlled analgesic painkillers, which are self-administered by the patient, while other doctors prefer to use an infusion pump that provides a local anesthetic directly onto the surgical site. The latter method provides pain relief without the undesirable side effects of other narcotic medications.

All abdominal surgeries carry the risks of bleeding, infection of the incision, blood clots, stroke, heart attacks, anesthetic complications, and intestinal complications. These risks are greater in the morbidly obese. Patients should be aware that most of these side effects, such as blood clots, have the potential to be life-threatening and anyone experiencing such complications should contact his or her doctor immediately or go to the emergency room for treatment. The risk of death is rather low in bariatric surgery patients; however, it should never be overlooked as a possibility.

The changes that are made in the gastrointestinal tract will require the patients to make permanent changes in his or her lifestyle. Postsurgery dietary guidelines will vary for different bariatric procedures and should be followed as closely as possible. The following are some of the most common guidelines given after bariatric procedures:

1. When you start eating solid foods again, it is important to chew your food very thoroughly before swallowing it. Also, it is necessary to wait a couple of minutes before swallowing the next bite of food.

2. Do no drink fluids while eating. Fluids will cause you to feel fuller faster and you may not get enough food to satisfy your nutritional requirements.

3. Avoid carbonated beverages, high-calorie nutritional supplements, milk shakes, and other foods that have no real nutritional value.

4. Definitely avoid alcohol.

5. Limit snacking between meals.

Common questions asked by patients include the following:

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1. What are the consequences if I fail to follow some of the dietary guidelines? Since these guidelines are designed to improve the chances of long term success, you may only experience limited success if you fail to meet those guidelines.

2. How soon will I be able to walk after the surgery? Doctors usually want patients to get out of bed and move around within 12 to 24 hours after the procedure. Upon leaving the hospital, it is possible that you will be able to care for most of your basic daily needs without too much discomfort.

3. How soon will I be able to drive after the surgery? You should not drive until you have stopped taking all narcotic medications and you are able to move quickly and you are fully alert to your surroundings.

4. When can I return to my normal activity level? Ability to return to presurgery activity will depend on your physical condition, the nature of the activity, and the type of procedure you had. Most patients are able to resume most normal activities within 6 weeks following the procedure.

5. Is it okay to use birth control? It is strongly recommended that women use the most effective method of birth control possible for at least 24 months following the surgical procedure.

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