3 Reasons Why Gastric Bypass Patients Should Wear a Medical Alert

If you have had gastric bypass surgery, it is important to wear a medical alert bracelet to alert EMTs or first responders to your surgery.  In order to treat you quickly and effectively, your medical alert bracelet should be engraved with some specific vital information.

1. After gastric bypass surgery, you should limit your exposure to NSAIDs.  NSAIDs are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, including aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxin, among many others.  NSAIDs are commonly used to treat headaches, muscle soreness from strains or other injuries, arthritis, menstrual pain and mild fevers.  After gastric bypass surgery, doctors advise you to stay away from NSAIDs due to the irritation it can cause to the pouch over prolonged usage.

  • The most common engraved information that is needed to alert first responders of your sensitivity to NSAIDS is simply: NO NSAIDS

2. After gastric bypass surgery, you should not have a “blind” NG tube inserted.  In Roux-en-Y, your stomach is stapled to create a small pouch and a passage for food to go around (bypass) a section of your small intestine.  After a gastric bypass, you shouldn’t have a blind NG tube. Your stomach is shaped differently after a gastric bypass, and the walls of your little pouch can easily be damaged by the NG tube if it’s not inserted carefully.  A doctor should insert the tube using a scope, a tiny camera, that allows him or her to see where the tube is going.

    • The most common engraved information that is needed to alert first responders to this is simply: NO BLIND NG TUBE or NO GASTRIC TUBE

3.  After gastric bypass surgery, you should limit your intake of sugar.  You may have to avoid foods that contain simple sugars such as candy, juice, ice cream, condiments, and soft drinks. Simple sugars may cause a problem called dumping syndrome. This happens because food moves too quickly through the stomach and intestines.  It can cause shaking, sweating, dizziness, rapid heart rate, and often severe diarrhea.

    •  The most common engraved information that is needed to alert first responders to this is: NO SUGARS 

What should I engrave on my medical alert if I’ve had gastric

bypass surgery?

Your doctor or doctor’s nurse will be able to help guide you in the best way they feel your medical ID tag should be engraved to reflect your own personal surgery, but here are a few examples of how your new medical ID tag may look.

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