Health Issues After Surgery

Dealing with Health IssuesIn the first few months after bariatric surgery, you may experience some common health issues as a result of the changes made to your body and your diet. If you are aware of potential problems before they occur, dealing with them is generally easy.  In this section we look at some of the more common issues you may face and give you some simple strategies for handling them.

Fatigue

It’s common to experience some fatigue during the first couple of weeks following surgery while your body is recovering. Your body is dealing with the stress of surgery as well as the adjustment of taking in far fewer calories than you’re used to. If you find that you’re still suffering from fatigue when you go to your first follow-up appointment, make sure to mention this to your surgeon. Prolonged fatigue may be caused by dehydration, vitamin deficiencies, or anemia. Your doctor may do a blood test to check for underlying problems.

To help avoid continuing fatigue, make sure to drink plenty of fluids and get adequate protein in your diet as soon as you can.

Dry Mouth

A combination of reduced fluids and pain medications will likely cause you to have dry mouth immediately after your surgery. This feeling can persist past the first several days if you’re not getting enough liquids. While you may feel like your new stomach pouch can’t handle a lot of fluids, it’s important to try to get at least 48 ounces of fluids every day. Eating sugar-free popsicles in addition to drinking clear liquids can help with dry mouth.

Difficulty Swallowing

After surgery, you may find that some foods are more difficult to swallow than others. It’s very important that you eat slowly and chew thoroughly to avoid getting food lodged in the banded opening of your stomach. Many people struggle with meats in particular. If you do feel like you have a piece of meat “stuck,” mix meat tenderizer with warm water and sip slowly to help soften the meat so that it can pass through more easily.

If you have persistent problems getting solids down even with careful chewing, or if you ever have problems swallowing liquids, call your surgeon. In rare cases, difficulty swallowing can be the result of an ulcer.

Gas

It’s very common to experience an increase in gas after weight loss surgery. Chewing more and swallowing more to compensate for smaller bites introduces additional air into your digestive system. This can cause an excess of gas, and you may notice rumbling and gurgling sounds from your intestines more often. This is not dangerous or a sign of problems, but it can be an awkward experience at first.

In addition to having an increase in gas, you may notice a change in the odor. This is usually caused by a diet that is high in meat and dairy following surgery. In rare cases, your doctor may recommend supplements or antibiotics to address this concern.

More Health Issues

Nausea and Vomiting

There are several reasons why you may experience nausea and vomiting after adjustable gastric band surgery. Besides the discomfort they cause you, they may also indicate an underlying problem that needs to be resolved.  In this section we look at causes of nausea and vomiting after adjustable gastric band and what you should do about it

Constipation

Along with changes in eating behaviors, you should also expect changes in your bowel movements as well.  Adjusting to these changes and ensuring that you maintain regularity in your bowel habits is addressed in this section.

Prescription Medications

Your gastric band may make it difficult to handle some of your regular medications as well as enabling you to cut down on some of your meds as you lose weight.  Here is a brief description of ways you can prepare your medications when you have a gastric band and how to work with your doctor to ensure you are taking the right amount of medication as your health improves.

Pregnancy

As your health improves and you lose weight after LAP-BAND or REALIZE Band surgery, problems with fertility may also improve. With just a few precautions, pregnancy is perfectly safe after weight loss. Here are the main guidelines if you are considering pregnancy after bariatric surgery.

Hair Loss

Temporary hair loss can be disheartening, especially when you are working so hard to become healthier. Here are a few tips to minimize hair loss.

Bad Breath

Learn about the causes of bad breath after bariatric surgery and use these tips to ensure bad breath doesn’t become a problem.

Depression

Dealing with so many changes can be difficult and some bariatric patients may be at risk for developing depression. In this section we examine the causes of post bariatric surgery depression and learn strategies for identifying it and seeking help.

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