Will I have a lot of pain?
Every attempt is made to control pain after surgery to make it possible for you to move about quickly and become active. This helps avoid problems and speeds recovery. Often several drugs are used together to help manage your post-surgery pain. Various methods of pain control, depending on your type of surgical procedure, are available. Ask your surgeon about other pain management options.
How long do I have to stay in the hospital?
Although it can vary, the hospital stay (including the day of surgery) can be one to two days for a laparoscopic band, two to three days for a laparoscopic gastric bypass or gastric sleeve.
Will the doctor leave a drain in after surgery?
Some patients will have a small tube to allow drainage of any accumulated fluids from the abdomen. This is a safety measure, and it is usually removed a few days after the surgery. Generally, it produces no more than minor discomfort.
What are some of the risks of surgery?
As with any major surgery, you are in danger of forming a blood clot or other surgical side effects. Statistically, the risk of death during these procedures is less than one percent. Your doctors will have assessed you for risks and prepared accordingly. All abdominal operations carry the risks of bleeding, infection in the incision, thrombophlebitis of legs (blood clots), lung problems (pneumonia, pulmonary embolisms), strokes or heart attacks, anesthetic complications, and blockage or obstruction of the intestine. These risks are greater in morbidly obese patients.
How soon will I be able to walk?
Almost immediately after surgery doctors will require you to get up and move about. Patients are asked to walk or stand at the bedside several hours after surgery, and take several walks the next day and thereafter. On leaving the hospital, you may be able to care for all your personal needs, but will need help with shopping, lifting and with transportation.
How soon can I drive?
For your own safety, you should not drive until you have stopped taking narcotic medications and can move quickly and alertly to stop your car, especially in an emergency. Usually this takes seven to 14 days after surgery.