Timeline for surgery – The 10 things you need to do before bariatric surgery

Getting ready for weight loss surgery requires preparation long before the procedure as well as a permanent commitment to the process.
Here’s a guide on how to prepare for bariatric surgery – whether you are having a sleeve or a bypass or a balloon or an ESG and what to expect in the lead up from the team here at Healthy Weight Australia.
People would usually start their journey around 2-3 months before surgery. This is why.

Referral from GP to consult with a bariatric surgeon. Having the support of your General Practitioner who will be able to care for you ongoingly will help you feel supported in your choice. If however you don’t have a regular GP and you need a referral, our Nurse Practitioner can help with this.

  • Referral from GP to consult with a bariatric surgeon.

Having the support of your General Practitioner who will be able to care for you ongoingly will help you feel supported in your choice. If however you don’t have a regular GP and you need a referral, our Nurse Practitioner can help with this.

  • Consult with the Nurse Practitioner.

Our Nurse Practitioner is the surgeons’ eyes and ears. She will gather background history along with medical history for the surgeon for your medical file with us.

  • Consult with our Physicians.

We have two specialists in the endocrine and metabolic space that are able to assist with the management of any comorbidities you have as well as alter medications and dosages as you begin to lose weight.

  • Consult with Allied Health.

Our team of dietitians, psychologists and exercise physiologists will be the ones who support you over the next 12 months after surgery, helping you with the challenges that pop up, the motivation you need on the hard days and troubleshoot when things aren’t working for you.

  • Consult with the surgeon.

Seeing the surgeon will help you to determine your eligibility for surgery and what surgery would give you the best results for you and your circumstances. You will be given a surgery date once you have consulted with the surgeon.

  • The paperwork. Ah, the paperwork.

You will need to submit forms for various things including hospital admission, preadmission clinic, Centrelink forms if you are applying for early release of super, private health insurance paperwork if you are using this to fund your surgery etc.

  • Pick your aftercare package plan.

Who do you want in your team and how often do you want to see them? We know that people who engage in multidisciplinary team care after surgery are more likely to achieve their goal weight and maintain that.

  • Get your blood test.

Ideally, we would like to correct any deficiencies you have before surgery. A blood test before you start your pre-op diet will help us to identify your multivitamin regimen after surgery also. From a medical perspective, it is important that we ensure your organs – liver, kidneys, heart and overall health is safe for surgery.

  • Collect all your goodies to get you through the pre-op diet and the first month after surgery.

Your multivitamins, your protein powder, your VLCD shakes, some good recipes for what to make pre and post-surgery, a timed water bottle, portion perfection plate, measuring rings/cups, a blender are a few essentials to get you started.

  • Make arrangements for leave from work.

If you are currently working, you will need to take time off work for surgery. Ideally, two weeks is best, particularly if you have an active job however if you have a desk job with some flexibility, you can return to work after a week. Some people find they are extremely tired in the first week though so keep this in mind. Surgery wounds and recovery usually takes around 6 weeks so if your job requires heavy lifting/machinery, you may need to request light duties until then.

  • Prepare yourself mentally.

This is going to be a big change. Make sure you are ready and have the support you need to succeed.

Indeed the process is extensive, time-consuming and draining but the one thing I have heard repeatedly after working in this space for 5 years is that the only regret people have is that they didn’t do it sooner.

If you are ready to get the ball rolling, we suggest booking in your first appointments, sorting out your referral and meeting the team to see if we would be a good fit for you in your weight loss journey.

 

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