Frequently Asked Bariatric Surgery Questions

Will I need plastic surgery to eliminate excess skin?

The amount of excess skin especially in the abdominal area depends on the amount of weight lost after bariatric surgery (the more weight lost, the more excess skin), age (younger patients may have better elasticity in their skin than older patients), exercise (some patients notice less excess skin if they’ve adhered to aggressive abdominal exercise regimens while losing weight to help tone those areas), and genetics (some patients notice that their parents have less loose skin than others).  Loose skin in the face, neck, arms and legs are very likely to occur regardless of these factors mentioned.


Can I drink alcohol after undergoing surgery?

No. We encourage you not to drink alcohol after surgery. It is dangerous since alcohol rapidly enters the intestine in all the procedures and can become unexpectedly toxic. Alcohol also contains too many calories and will slow or limit weight loss.


Is exercise an important factor after weight loss surgery?

Exercise is critical to successful weight loss, as well as long-term cardiovascular health.  Remember, weight loss surgery only minimizes calorie intake if done correctly.  Daily exercise allows for the excess fat in your body to be burned off.


What happens if I do not obey my dietary guidelines after surgery?

If you do not follow the guidelines after having bariatric surgery, you can still be obese and malnourished at the same time.


Why weight loss surgery?

Weight loss surgery can offer successful long-term improvement in medical conditions such as improved cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure, joint disease and sleep apnea.  The National Institute of Health has endorsed surgical weight loss an effective method for the treatment of morbid obesity.


Does Laparoscopic Surgery decrease the risk?

No. Laparoscopic operations carry the same risk as the procedure performed as an open operation. The benefits of laparoscopy are typically less discomfort, shorter hospital stay, earlier return to work and reduced scarring and other wound issues like hernias.


How soon will I be able to walk?

Almost immediately after surgery doctors will require you to get up and move about. Walking also decreases the risk of getting life-threatening blood clots. Patients are asked to walk or stand at the bedside on the night of surgery, take several walks the next day and thereafter. On leaving the hospital, you may be able to care for all your personal needs, but will need help with shopping, lifting and with transportation.


How can I prevent hair loss after my surgery?

Most patients experience some hair loss after surgery that cannot be prevented.  Some patients have found success in taking “hair and nail supplements” found at most vitamin stores.  These vitamin formulations contain extra B vitamins, flax seed oil, coenzyme Q and other supplements that may help.  Results are not guaranteed.


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