Life After Surgery
Having weight loss surgery can feel like a new beginning. The amount of weight you lose will depend on the type of surgical procedure you have done and how committed you are to the required lifestyle changes, including exercise and eating habits. Typically patients continue losing weight 18 to 24 months after surgery. In order for you to see optimum results, NMC’s Surgical Weight Loss Program recommends patients follow The Four Rules which are explained at length in the Patient Education Handbook.
- Eat protein first at every meal
- Drink at least 64 ounces of water each day
- Exercise 30 to 60 minutes every day.
- Absolutely no snacking
After weight loss surgery, the amount you can eat before feeling full is significantly reduced. You may feel full after just a few bites. Your doctor recommends eating three small meals a day as mentioned above, along with vitamins to ensure you get proper nutrition. Most patients experience some difficulty tolerating red meat and sweets after surgery.
Going Back to Work
Your ability to resume pre-surgery levels of activity will vary according to your physical condition, the nature of the activity and the type of weight loss surgery you had. Many patients return to full pre-surgery levels of activity within 2 weeks of their procedure.
Birth Control & Pregnancy
Female patients SHOULD NOT BECOME PREGNANT for 18 months post surgery and until your weight has stabilized. Becoming pregnant prior to the 18 month guideline could result in injury to the unborn child.
Long-Term Follow Up
Surgery is only one portion of the bariatric tool; follow up is the other.
Appointments with your surgeon are frequent for the first year, then become yearly for five years or any time you are having a problem.
What is involved with follow up?
- Review lab results
- Review the Four Rules
- Review emotional changes
- Review medications and co-morbidities
- Evaluate your progress and weight loss
- Give encouragement and referral to psychological professional if necessary
The widespread use of support groups has provided weight loss surgery patients an excellent opportunity to discuss their various personal and professional issues. Most learn, for example, that weight loss surgery will not immediately resolve existing emotional issues or heal the years of damage that morbid obesity might have inflicted on their emotional well-being. We highly encourage you to attend support group meetings after your surgery.
“Ricardo Herrera, at 31 years old and 524 pounds, had struggled hard since elementary school to try and slim down. Living life at his weight was especially painful and frustrating because of his job as a plumber, which meant he had to stand, kneel, climb, and crawl for long periods of time. He couldn’t find clothes big enough to fit, and he was self-conscious and shy in social situations…”Read More