After exploring all of your options, including non-surgical weight loss procedures, you may be presented the option of bariatric surgery. After making the decision of bariatric surgery, it's time to prepare. Bariatric Fusion Is here to support you
If your hospital or clinic trips were limited to quick dental procedures or one-day surgeries, you might think that you have everything you need. However, the hospital stay for bariatric surgery is going to be a little more extensive and require increased preparation.
Bariatric surgeries, like gastric bypass, Duodenal Switch, Sleeve Gastrectomy, and SIPS procedures classify as major surgeries. This means that you'll be required to stay longer before and after surgery for the pre-bariatric surgery questionnaire, nicotine test before bariatric surgery, pre-op testing for gastric sleeve, and cardiac clearance for bariatric surgery.
A trip to the hospital for bariatric surgery would be like any other trip; there’s a suitcase to prepare and items to pack. Here we discuss the bariatric surgery hospital checklist.
Essential Items to Pack for Your Bariatric Surgery
Regardless of the type of bariatric procedure you’re going to have, these are the items that should be included.
1. Your Prescription Drugs and Other Medications
Any medications you currently take or have been prescribed for chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma, and high blood pressure should be the first items that you pack. All medications should be in the containers provided to you by the pharmacy with the contact names of the doctor who prescribed them to you.
Once you arrive at the hospital and even before the bariatric surgery pre-op testing, give all medications to the pre-op nurse so that they can arrange to give them to you on time.
During your hospital stay, you may receive additional medications. In order for the doctors to avoid any interactions, they need to be fully aware of everything you take, even if it's an over-the-counter product.
Also, don't forget to pack your health insurance and Medicare cards in case some paperwork needs to be finalized before you undergo your weight loss surgery.
2. Bariatric Specific Supplements
In order to receive the maximum benefit from your bariatric surgery, your healthcare provider or registered dietitian will recommend some lifestyle changes, including what your pre and post-operative diet should consist of.
Typically a couple of weeks before surgery, you will be required to incorporate specific vitamins, minerals, and bariatric supplements into your diet. If you were recommended to take bariatric specific supplements before surgery, bring these supplements with you to the hospital as you'll be required to continue taking them after the procedure.
Initially following bariatric surgery, a chewable multivitamin is recommended for toleration, healing and absorption purposes. There is also an increased focus on protein intake following surgery to maintain muscle mass and increase healing. Some of the most recommended supplements for bariatric patients are the Chewable Bariatric Multivitamins and High Protein Meal Replacement Tubs from Bariatric Fusion. The multivitamins are convenient, affordable, great tasting, and contain the nutrients required to maintain health before and after weight loss surgery.
It's important to try before you buy to ensure a product is suitable for your individual needs. This will promote a successful bariatric experience. If you’re looking to give them a try, you can purchase the Fusion Sample Bag which contains an assortment of protein meal replacements, calcium, iron, and multivitamin supplements in a small and affordable package.
3. Loose Clothing
After the procedure, it's common to be a little sore. You will want to bring an extra set of comfortable post-bariatric clothing that will be easy to put on.
A pair of loose-fitting sweatpants and an oversized, open-front shirt would be your ideal choice. Also, since your abdomen will be tender, pack a pair of cotton underwear with a comfortable waistband to wear on the ride home.
If you wear glasses, make sure you have a case to keep them safe during the surgery. The same thing goes for any dental retainers or other personal items that you would like to have safe and tucked away during surgery.
Finally, keep in mind that hospitals are usually kept colder in order to combat bacterial growth. After surgery, your body will be more sensitive to cold. While you'll be obliged to wear the hospital gown during your stay, you can bundle up in a warm robe or cardigan until it's time to leave.
4. Slippers and Socks
Yes, the socks are to keep your feet warm, but a pair of non-slip flip flops or slippers are essential to pack too. You won't want to walk in the hospital halls with bare feet.
Just make sure your slippers of choice slip easily on your feet without the need to bend down.
5. Charging Cords and Headphones
Hospital stays can be boring and uncomfortable. Most of the time, your loved ones won’t be allowed to stay with you. You will want to keep in touch with friends and family, so make sure to bring a power pack or charging cord for your phone.
You may want to keep all other electronic devices at home for safekeeping.
The hospital can be a busy and noisy place. A pair of headphones or earplugs will be great to have in order to sleep or relax.
6. Personal Entertainment and Books
To help yourself overcome preoperative anxiety and postoperative pain, try to make your hospital room more personal. Surrounding yourself with objects you're familiar with will help keep you calm and prepare you for recovery.
Pack your favorite entertainment and comfort items. If you enjoy reading, nothing passes the time like a great novel. If you like to sleep in a face mask, bring it along. If hugging your gastric sleeve pillow is going to calm you down, bring that as well.
Speaking of pillows, a hospital bed is not the most luxurious option when it comes to comfort. Hospital sheets aren’t always soft, and the cushions may be a bit firm for your liking. If possible, bring a u-shaped pillow to help you adjust your neck and back comfortably. You can also use it as a barrier between the seatbelt and your stomach on your drive home.
7. Self-Care Products and Toiletries
Hospitals provide the basics like soap and toothpaste, but even those may not be to your liking. Feel free to pack your toiletries like a toothbrush, deodorant, hairbrush, shaver, and wet wipes.
Another great thing to bring is Chapstick. As a side effect of anesthesia, your mouth and lips will be dry the following day after surgery. An antiseptic mouth wash would be a good idea too in order to prevent bad breath in case you don’t have enough energy to get up and brush your teeth.
Don’t go overboard with these items as they’re easy to lose amongst the other items in the hospital rooms.
8. Questions to Ask Your Bariatric Surgeon
Finally, pack all the questions you want to ask your bariatric surgeon. Even if you’ve done the research and gone through everything with the doctor prior to surgery day, there are some questions that may come to mind. Write them down and ask to have a conversation with a specialist before you undergo surgery.
Zip Your Bag, and You’re Good to Go!
Now that you've checked all of the boxes, the only thing left to do is pack these items in an organized way with the things you're going to use first on top. Also, make sure the bag you choose is easy to carry; a spinner suitcase would be easier to wheel around.
Finally, do what you can to stay relaxed and calm. Take a nice warm shower and prepare yourself mentally for your weight loss surgery.
Have a safe trip to the hospital and enjoy your new beginning!
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