Gastric bypass surgery patients can expect to stay in the hospital two nights, during which our staff make every effort to keep patients comfortable and safe.
When you awake, you may have a drain attached to your gown. This drain is to help remove excess fluid from the surgery. The drain is usually removed before you leave the hospital. You may also have a urinary catheter in place. In most circumstances, the catheter in your bladder will be removed within 24-hours following your surgery.
Your diet will be NPO (nothing by mouth). Ice chips will be restricted to 1 cup every 8 hours. Additional nutrition and fluids may be given by use of your I.V. until proper testing can determine your surgical progression.
Your pain management will depend on your discussion with the surgeon and/or anesthesiologist pre-operatively. Some patients will have patient controlled analgesic pumps (PCA); others will receive pain medications through their I.V.s or by injection. If at any time you feel that your pain is not under control, please discuss this with your nurse, or with the doctor that will visit with you each day. Remember that pain management does not mean pain free. It will be impossible to relieve all the aches and pains that you should expect. This soreness will decrease over the next few days.
Nurses and nursing aids will check your incision areas and vital signs (blood pressure, temperature, and pulse) at regular intervals. This will include late night and early morning visits. Please remember that everybody involved has your best care in mind. These late night/early morning visits are to help ensure your health and safety.
You will be asked to do breathing exercises with an incentive spirometer, to help prevent pneumonia and other respiratory problems. You will also be expected to get out of bed and walk as much as possible. Being mobile will help prevent pneumonia, blood clots, constipation and other post-operative problems. You will be asked to walk the halls at least twice a day and to sit in a chair, out of bed, as much as possible. The hospital asks that patients not leave the floor except for testing or procedures without permission from the physician.
Two days after your gastric bypass surgery, you will undergo a blue dye test to check for “leaks” at the stomach surgical site. Pending the results of that test, you may have permission to begin your clear liquid diet. This diet will be followed according to your discharge instructions. Please inform the hospital staff if you are having difficulty tolerating liquids.
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