Post-Operative Phase for Gastric Bypass Surgery

Your surgery is over but your new life has just begun. Your success depends on you! It is critical that you follow all post-operative instructions carefully and take advantage of the support that the bariatric team has to offer.

After your surgery, you will see the surgeon and dietitian at 2 weeks and 2 months.

You will see our MD and dietitian at the 6 month and 12 month visit and then annually.

Medications After the Surgery:

  • You will be instructed to take an acid-blocking medication for 3 months after the surgery to decrease your risk of stomach and bowel ulcers.
  • You will be instructed to take Actigall® for 6 months after your surgery (if your gallbladder is present) to help decrease your risk of getting gallstones. The risk of developing gallstones is significantly increased with any type of rapid weight loss.
  • You will be instructed to never take any medications or products which contain aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin®, Aleve®, Naprocin®, etc.), or any NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatorys) as they will significantly increase your risk of developing ulcers in your pouch or bowel. If you take a baby aspirin for heart disease, you will need to take an acid-blocking medication for life.
  • Vitamin and mineral supplements daily for the rest of your life.
    • 2 multivitamins with minerals daily
    • up to 6 calcium citrate tablets daily
    • Vitamin B12 sublingually (under the tongue) daily or injections monthly
    • Additional vitamins and or minerals may be required based on your blood tests.

Diet Advancement After GBP Surgery

Liquids - you will be on a liquid diet for 2 weeks after your surgery. This allows the pouch to heal while enabling you to take in nutrients to avoid malnutrition. This also significantly decreases any discomfort or pain which is associated with eating solids this soon after the surgery. You will learn which liquids are recommended during this phase during the pre-surgery nutrition classes with the dietitian.

Pureed / mushy foods - you will be on these very soft foods for 4 - 6 weeks after your surgery. This allows the pouch to continue healing while gradually becoming accustomed to solid foods again. Once again, you will receive specific instructions on which foods are tolerated best during this phase in the pre-surgery nutrition classes with the dietitian.

Soft, Regular foods - As you become completely healed, your pouch is able to tolerate a greater variety of foods, which you will gradually add into your diet. It may take up to year before you become comfortable with what you can eat and how much you can eat.

Weight Changes After Gastric Bypass Surgery

How Quickly Will You Lose Weight?

  • The average weight loss following gastric bypass surgery is approximately 5-15 pounds per week for the first 2 or 3 months with a gradual tapering off to about 1-2 pounds per week after the first 6 months or so.
  • The rate of weight loss varies greatly between individuals. It is very important not to compare your rate of weight loss with others.

Weight Plateaus

  • Everyone experiences "mini-plateaus" throughout the first 6 months or so. If your plateau lasts longer than 6 weeks and you want to lose additional weight, adjustments in your diet and/or exercise regimen are required to restart your weight loss. Our dietitian can help you with these "stalls".

Weight Gain

  • It is common to regain a small amount of weight (10-20 pounds) before your weight finally stabilizes at your personal goal weight. Your body is readjusting to its new form and weight. Diet and exercise are essential to lose additional weight and/or maintain your weight loss.
  • It is possible to gain all, and more of your weight back following gastric bypass surgery if you are not willing to change your lifestyle to include healthy dietary choices eaten in moderation and incorporating activity/exercise into your daily life.