The Hospital Stay

Lady reading bookFor the laparoscopic procedure most patient’s length of stay for the gastric bypass is 2 days; for the lap band, 1 day.  Patient’s length of stay for an open procedure is approximately 5 days. You will be discharged when you are able to:

  1. Take enough liquids and nutrients by mouth to prevent dehydration
  2. Have no fever
  3. Have adequate pain control with medication

Depending on which procedure is performed, one or two small tubes may be placed around the stomach pouch and the bypassed stomach to drain body fluids after the surgery. These are usually removed in three to ten days. To help prevent blood clots, anti-embolism compression devices will be placed on your legs and your surgeon will require you to attempt to stand up and move around as soon as possible, usually within the first 24 hours.

Depending on your medical condition, there is the possibility of being placed in the intensive care unit to closely monitor your heart and lungs. Depending on the hospital, patients who use Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) or Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure (BiPAP) for sleep apnea may be asked to bring their machines with them for use immediately after the operation.

PATIENT TESTIMONIAL
Hi, I'm Rudy. It will be ten years on June 21, 2014 I started on a remarkable journey; I had gastric bypass surgery.
Five months before that day, I was at my primary care physician's and he asked me if I ever thought of having bypass surgery. I never gave it a thought. I was on three blood pressure medications, cholesterol medicine, and 100 units of insulin every day. I had trouble breathing, just walking up a slight grade I had to use an inhaler.
At the end of our conversation, the doctor said I would most likely have a heart attack or a stroke within five years. That was a real eye opener. I was just 53 years old and heart problems ran in the family. My Dad was 56 when he had his first heart attack. I could not lose weight. I had no will power. I kind of blamed by Mom for my weight problem. As a child I was taught to clean my plate, which I often over ate. That carried on into my adult years.
I was running out of medical insurance and wanted the surgery. All went well the first month. I went back to work and was losing weight. The second month I couldn't eat anything. The intestine scarred where it was joined to my pouch and shrunk shut. Nothing could pass through. I went from 283 lbs. To 137 lbs. in five months. I lived on banana popsicles. I got my medical insurance back; within two days I was in the hospital getting dilated. I could get food down for days then everything would shut down. I was dilated six times with no success.
I was getting for surgery to reconnect the intestine to my pouch when I got a bowel blockage. Out patient surgery took care of that problem. No more sever cramps. A month later I went in for the reconnection.
Before the surgery, Dr. Mike (Felix) remarked how calm I was. My wife was a nervous wreck; Dr. Mike was real concerned. He asked me why I was so calm. I said my wife was upset for the both of us. I had confidence in his skills; and there was nothing I could do anyhow except go along for the ride. So why worry about something you have no control over.
Surgery went well. Recovery didn't take long and I was eating real food. I've been around 180 lbs. for 10 years now. I went from a 44 inch waist to a 34 inch waist. I feel strong and I have a lot more energy.
I don't use an inhaler anymore. I'm off all my blood pressure medications, cholesterol medicine and I went from 100 units of insulin down to 20 units of insulin a day.
At my heaviest, I weighed 283 lbs. and I have managed to keep 100 lbs. off for 10 years.
One thing I've learned is that I can leave food on my plate when I'm full.
 

- Rudy



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