For many gastric bypass surgery patients, the long-anticipated day of surgery is an exciting end to a long wait. It’s often referred to by postsurgical patients as their “birthday,” because of the life-changing transformation of health they’ve achieved.
Preparing for the day of gastric bypass surgery is like preparing for many other surgeries: Your surgeon will have specific instructions for you to follow. A few of the more frequently given instructions include:
- Do not drink or eat anything prior to surgery, beginning the evening before the day of surgery
- Most medicines can be taken the day of surgery, just with small sips of water (however, your doctor will have instructions regarding specific medications)
- Bring all of your medications with you
- Bring your CPAP machine, if you have one, for use in the hospital
- Arrive early; our hospital require patients to be up to two hours early
Again, your surgeon will give you specific instructions, especially regarding your medications, to prepare you for surgery.
When you arrive, you will undergo a few preoperative steps. You will change out of your clothes. You will see your nurses, and often, you will see your surgeon as well as your anesthesiologist. An IV line will be started to keep you hydrated and to administer medications such as antibiotics. The preoperative experience is often a short one, after which you will be taken to the operating room.
If you are not already under anesthesia before you get to the operating room, you will be once there. Then, you will be intubated and your surgeon will perform the operation. Gastric bypass procedures, whether they are minimally invasive or open, are fairly short … about 75 to 90 minutes.
After surgery, your healthcare team will make sure that your vital signs are correct and arrange for you to be taken to a recovery room.