PRE Operative Instructions
You must be fasted prior to your procedure - DO NOT EAT, DRINK (even water) or CHEW anything for at least 6 hours before your procedure. The hospital will ring you the day before your procedure to confirm your admission time.
If you have a gastric band you will need to have a fluid diet the day before your surgery and fast for at least 8hrs on the day of your procedure.
Notify Dr Lim of any other medications that you are currently taking.
Do not take any medication that contains aspirin, or take anti-inflammatory or herbal medication for two weeks before your procedure. Aspirin thins the blood and this can result in unnecessary blood loss during your procedure.
Please stop smoking four weeks before and four weeks after your procedure. Smoking decreases blood flow to skin and may result in tissue loss and delay the healing process, resulting in unfavourable scars.
Do not drink any alcohol two days before your procedure as it can interfere with the anaesthetic you will be given on the day.
Vitamin C is to be taken two weeks before and two weeks after surgery. Vitamin C may help to assist healing which may result in a reduced healing time.
Do not wear any nail polish, make-up or jewellery to the hospital and leave any valuables at home.
It is recommended that you take something loose and comfortable with you to wear home from hospital eg tracksuit. This will prevent pressure on your abdomen as it will still be tender.
POST Operative Instructions
Dr Lim will normally visit you in the hospital the morning after your procedure.
A general anaesthetic can take a few days to recover from and if you feel a little slow and not quite yourself for a few days this is quite normal.
Do not smoke during your recovery period as this may slow the healing process and affect wound healing.
When you wake up you will have firm strapping and a binder around your incision sites, as well as one or two drains. The drains will be removed between two to four days or when the amount of drainage fluid has reduced, Dr Lim will instruct the nursing staff on this.
You may need to wear a compression garment day and night and Dr Lim will instruct you as to how long you will need to wear your binder. Normally this is for six weeks.
You will need to walk in a hunched over position for the first few days and slowly straighten up as your pain subsides. You will also be more comfortable laying with your knees bent and your back and head supported by a few pillows.
While you are in hospital you will be given medication for the pain. The amount of pain you feel after the operation will be individual and varies from person to person. If you are concerned about the amount of pain you are in or you feel you cannot control the pain then you should inform the nursing staff whilst in hospital and at home call the rooms.
It is very important that the course of antibiotics you are prescribed is taken until all tablets are finished.
Whilst in hospital and at home you will need to keep your bowels regular. This may involve taking an aperient prescribed by Dr Lim, eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables and drinking plenty of water. If you have any trouble using you bowels please do not try and strain, inform the nursing staff and medication can be given to assist you.
Over exertion and over activity should be avoided for the first six weeks. You should also take care of your stomach area during this time that you do not bump it, strain or place any pressure on it. This includes lifting small children. You will however need to gently walk around frequently and do gentle foot and leg exercises to prevent the formation of clots in your legs (DVT's). You will be given small injections to assist with this whilst you are in hospital.
The area around your upper outer thighs, lower abdomen, and upper buttocks may feel quite unusual for the first few weeks. It may feel tight especially in the lower section of the abdomen, and there may be reduced sensitivity in those areas. This may persist for a few weeks but will eventually return.
Healing time is individual to each person. It is recommended that you have around three weeks off work. Most people feel well recovered between three to six weeks.
You will see Dr Lim one week after discharge and your sutures will be removed. Most of the sutures will dissolve on their own.
Contact the rooms if any of the following develop;
- a temperature higher than 38°C or chills
- Heavy bleeding from the excision line or drain sites
- Severe sudden pain or tenderness
- Redness around the incisions that is spreading
- Pain, tenderness or swelling around your calfs
The nursing staff from the Dr Lim’s rooms will contact you following your discharge from hospital.
Both Dr Lim and the nursing staff are available to you in the post operative period and indeed at any time during your recovery. Should you have any concerns or questions please do not hesitate to contact the rooms. If you have any concerns after hours please contact the hospital where you had your surgery and they will be able to contact Dr Lim as required.