How to Prepare for Weight Loss Surgery
In this article we discuss how to prepare for weight loss surgery. These pointers will help you navigate the process and achieve the best possible results. The guidelines apply to all types of weight loss procedures, including gastric band surgery, gastric bypass surgery and gastric sleeve surgery. Your surgeon will advise further on steps specific to your personal circumstances.
Your first consultation
For your first consultation, you will need a GP referral letter, your Medicare card, details of any private medical cover and copies of relevant X-rays or other scans. You will need to complete a patient registration form and your surgeon will advise you on treatment options.
Finances and organisation
We will provide comprehensive advice on the costs of your procedure, the amounts covered by your medical insurance and any out-of-pocket expenses you will need to cover personally. We will also advise on pre-operation tests, diet programs, psychological evaluations, and any other preparatory steps. If you are wanting to access your superannuation to fund your surgery we can advise you on this process. Read more about how much weight loss surgery will cost to see the best option for you.
In the weeks before your procedure, it’s important to initiate lifestyle changes in preparation for the changes your surgery will bring. Improvements you make early will ease the transition and reduce associated risk factors. These lifestyle changes, which will continue post-op, include:
- Healthy eating. Eat less, in smaller portions. Focus on proteins and develop the habit of eating slowly. Start taking a daily multivitamin. Your body is about to undergo a major change – make sure it’s as ready as possible.
- Drink more water, but not with meals – you won’t be able to after your procedure, so it’s best to get into the habit now. Cut back on coffee and eliminate sugary drinks and alcohol, but drink plenty of water outside of meal times – aim for 2 litres per day.
- Exercise. Just 20 minutes a day of light exercise such as walking will assist weight loss and reduce the risks of any complications during surgery.
- Stop smoking. Smoking increases the risk of blood clots during surgery for up to 6 weeks following your last cigarette and it also increases risk of lung infection.
Before your procedure
As the date of your procedure approaches, you should already be exercising regularly and eating and drinking as if you’ve already had the surgery.
You should finalise arrangements for time off work, child care, transportation and any in-home help you may require after the operation. You should also stock up on your post-op food and vitamin requirements and make any necessary modifications needed to improve accessibility at home.
On the day before surgery you should try and use an antimicrobial wash. After check-in, you’ll undergo pre-surgery checks such as an ECG, and have a last check-up with your surgeon where you’ll deal with any last-minute questions or details. You will be nil-by-mouth from midnight on the day before your procedure.
Perth Weight Loss and Surgery provides a comprehensive pre-op and post-op plan tailored to your personal requirements. Contact us to ask any questions or book an initial consultation