Gastric bypass is the most common bariatric surgery and considered to be the “gold standard” in weight loss surgery, according to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). The procedure is performed under general anesthesia and can take anywhere from one to four hours to perform depending on the specific technique used and the individual considerations of the patient. The invasive surgery — which requires a post-operative hospital stay ranging from one to seven days — can greatly improve quality of life for recipients who have been unable to lose adequate weight through a more traditional course of diet and exercise.
On average, most people require two to five weeks of recovery time before normal activities can resume. Here are seven quick tips designed to help speed up gastric bypass recovery.
1. Walk Around Early
One of the most important tips to an early gastric bypass recovery is getting up and walking around as soon as you’re physically able. This will require some pain tolerance, but the benefits far exceed the discomfort. That isn’t to say you should be walking miles or doing anything overly strenuous, but in the days after your surgery, you should make a point of walking around the house as much as possible. This forced exercise also represents a good start to the new, energized, physically active lifestyle that gastric bypass can provide.
2. Follow the Doctor’s Orders
It should go without saying that the most important post-operative recovery tip is to listen to your doctor and follow his or her instructions. You’re trusting the surgeon with your surgery and should, therefore, ascribe the same level of trust to your post-operative care. Your doctor will provide a list of do’s and don’ts for you to follow, and will work with you through several follow-up appointments. If you have any questions about the post-operative management or the recovery process, don’t hesitate to bring them up.