Hospital & Recovery
The Bariatric Floor will be your home away from home. You’ll feel comfortable. You’ll feel comforted. You’ll have the privacy you need and the care you deserve.
Pre-Operative Holding Area
- After you check in at Admissions, you’ll meet your team of nurses and start your IV
- Your Anesthesiologist and Surgeon will check in with you and answer any new questions and prep you for surgery
The Operating Room
- You’ll move to the Operating Room, where you’ll shift comfortably to a gurney for your surgery
- From there you probably won’t remember much, but rest assured your team will take care of you
- After surgery, you’ll move to the Recovery Room, where you’ll stay until you’re awake and comfortable
The Bariatric Floor
- We’ll monitor your blood sugar and manage your pain
- We’ll start you on your Phase 1 Diet
- We’ll welcome your family and we’ll send you home when you’re ready
- 80% of our patients leave the hospital after one night, and most others leave after two nights
- Your follow-up appointments will depend on your method of weight loss surgery:
Gastric Bypass | Sleeve Gastrectomy
- Why? To check in on your overall physical health and provide any additional education, information or maintenance
- Initial Appointment: 1 week post operation
- Follow Up: 1-month, 3-month, 6-month, 1-yr, 18-month and 2-yr
Getting Back to Life
You’ve just had had major abdominal surgery with general anesthesia. It’s normal to feel tired, for up to 3 weeks from your surgery date. Slow down, be patient and call us if you need advice. In the meantime, here are answers to some key post-operative questions.
Can I shower?
- You can get all of your incisions wet after leaving the hospital; just don’t take a bath or swim for 1 week.
How active can I be?
- Don’t overdo it, and be careful not to rip, pull or tear anything done in surgery. Walk and take the stairs, but if you feel tired or start hurting, then stop and rest.
- Refrain from sit-ups or weight training until two weeks after surgery.
Will there be incisional pain?
- Everyone responds differently, but it’s normal to have abdominal wall pain, incisional pain, or muscle spasms. Take your pain medication or use a heating pad and call us if your pain gets worse.
- You might also experience bloating and gas pains in the first 2 days post-surgery.
Can I drive my car?
- Don’t drive a car if you’re experiencing pain or taking pain medication, because your reflexes and response time may be affected.
Can I return to work?
- We recommend returning to work 1-2 weeks after laparoscopic surgery.
What about my regular medications?
- Resume your regular medications when you get home, especially blood pressure and depression medications.
- If you’re taking medications for diabetes, cholesterol, high blood pressure, heartburn, arthritis, consult your team because your need might decrease. If you’re on diabetes medication, check your blood sugar daily.
- You should not be taking NSAIDS, so consult your doctor with any questions.
After Weight Loss Surgery
You did it! Your weight loss surgery is complete, and your journey to healing begins on day one. You will need to make sure you follow the post-operative diet strictly to avoid any diet-related complications, and consult with your Einstein Bariatrics dietitian with any questions about food, portion sizes, your dietary intake, and overall nutritional value of your diet. To start, it is all about liquids and proteins!
Phase One (Day 1 through 7 – After Surgery)
Your goal for the first week after surgery is to stay hydrated! Aim for six to eight cups of fluids each day. You will feel full after drinking only a few ounces. Remember to sip slowly and do not drink more than eight ounces in an hour. Liquids need to be sugar-free. Protein shakes can start on day three, but only one shake per day.
Phase Two (Days 8 through 14 – After Surgery)
During this next phase of the post-operative diet, you will be able to have full liquids: milk products, smooth low-fat yogurt, thin hot cereals, and cream soups. Protein shakes increase to two shakes per day and you will work towards the goal of six to eight cups of fluids each day. It is important to continue to sip slowly on liquids – only four tablespoons or ¼ cup at a time.
Phase Three (Days 15 through 21 – After Surgery)
During this week, you will begin to eat three meals per day consisting of only pureed proteins and you will start taking vitamins and minerals. Portions will be ¼ cup, three times per day of protein-rich foods such as fish, turkey, chicken, beef, eggs, and beans. You will need to not drink 30 minutes before a meal, during a meal and thirty minutes after a meal.
Phase Four (Days 22 through 27 – After Surgery)
During phase four of the diet progression, you will continue to eat three meals per day, but add a soft side food to your meal. Your foods at this phase should be soft and mash-able with a fork. Your side foods might include canned fruit packed in water, well-cooked vegetables, unsweetened applesauce, and seafood. It is important to always eat your protein food first, followed by your side food. Your meal size is about ½ cup at this phase (¼ cup protein, ¼ cup side food).
Phase Five through Eight – the Second Month After Surgery
During the next four weeks, you will gradually increase the consistency of foods in your diet and the variety of foods you are eating (a little at a time). You will continue to include two protein shakes per day through phase eight after surgery to meet your goals of drinking six to eight cups of fluid and consuming 60 to 80 grams of protein daily. Each day, one to two new foods should be added to your diet. You will start to include in your eating plan whole grain toasts and cereals to your meals along with raw fruits and vegetables.
Your New Way of Eating
You are well on your way to a new, healthier lifestyle! Your long-term success will depend on how well you stay focused on a new way of eating. Some keys to success:
- Always chew your food thoroughly. Take small bites and chew to a pureed consistencyy
- Separate drinking and eating by 30 minutes
- Aim for eight cups (64 ounces) of fluid each day. Stay away from carbonated and sugary beverages
- Eat mindfully. Listen to your body and focus on how you feel. Hunger and fullness will be different than before your surgery
- Use smaller plates and bowls
- Measure your foods
- Protein, Protein, Protein! Every meal and snack should include a protein. Always eat your protein food first, followed by a serving of fruit or a vegetable
- Avoid alcohol after weight loss surgery
- Include fiber-rich foods in your diet for fullness, heart health, and bowel regularity
Common Nutrition Concerns after Surgery
After weight loss surgery, some patients may experience some nutritional complications related to their dietary intake. Your Einstein Bariatrics dietitian will work with you on strategies to prevent and/or treat any diet-related concerns.
- Food Intolerances – Some foods are not well tolerated initially. Such foods include untoasted bread, dry fibrous meats such as chicken and steak, pasta, rice, stringy vegetables, skins of fruit, and fried foods
- Dumping Syndrome – Dumping syndrome is when food is “dumped” into your small intestine without being digesting after gastric bypass surgery. Eating foods high in concentrated or simple sugars and/or fat can lead to dumping
- Bowel changes – Loose stool or diarrhea may occur at times related to dumping syndrome, intake of sugar alcohols, or possibly lactose intolerance. Patients may experience constipation which may be affected by fluid intake, activity levels, fiber intake, and iron intake.