If you have struggled with your weight and you are looking for a way to get rid of the extra pounds before you start trying to get pregnant, weight loss surgery could be an option. Weight loss surgery requires research and detailed conversations with your doctor to see if you are a candidate.
You will need to consider how the surgery will impact your body immediately following it, in addition to later when you decide to start a family. The good news: gastric sleeve surgery can help with fertility.
How it works
The Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy (LSG) is a restrictive procedure that removes approximately 70 to 80 percent of the stomach. After surgery, the stomach is the shape of a tube or “sleeve”, roughly the size and shape of a hot dog. Along with a new diet and exercise, this will help with rapid weight loss.
The operation does not reroute intestines or put in artificial devices. Instead, it causes hormonal changes that reduce the feelings of hunger. This is a very effective procedure that allows patients to see significant excess weight loss after a few months and help keep it off.
Starting a family after gastric sleeve surgery
After surgery, your body will undergo many different changes. Not only will your nutrition change, but your hormones will be changing well. This can cause complications if you get pregnant too soon after gastric sleeve surgery. Healthy nutrition and stable hormones are critical to a healthy pregnancy, so it is advised to wait at least 12 to 18 months after surgery to start trying to get pregnant after gastric sleeve.
If a woman gets pregnant before then, it could cause complications for post-bariatric surgery. Make sure to have a discussion about your family plan with your doctor as well as your bariatric surgeon. This is important – your body will undergo significant changes during this time. The body will need weight gain for the baby at the same time you’re trying to lose weight.
And because you now have a smaller stomach and cannot consume as much food, you will need to ensure that the food you are eating is healthy and rich in nutrients that are important for you, as well as your growing baby. Once your weight stabilizes after bariatric surgery, it is safer to get pregnant.
Our experienced and trained team of professionals at WeightWise can help answer your questions about pregnancy and how gastric sleeve, duodenal switch, and gastric bypass surgery may work for you. Before we accept any new client into the program, there will be an initial consultation.
Potential pregnancies will be discussed if needed, but so will your physical history, the history of your family, as well as any physical or emotional roadblocks that may get in the way of weight loss. We want to make sure women and their babies remain safe and healthy throughout the pregnancy.
As we discussed before, diet after bariatric surgery is just as important as the surgery itself. A liquid diet is mandatory for two weeks after surgery, as well as liquid protein supplements. With a pregnancy, bariatric supplements including vitamin B12, iron, calcium, and other nutrients will be needed, too.
Physical activity is important for both post-op patients and mothers to be as well. Remaining flexible and having a strong cardiovascular system will help both situations and will reduce the risk of heart issues, cancers, and strokes. It will also keep your body in shape for after the pregnancy.
There is a lot to consider when thinking about bariatric surgery, even more so when bringing pregnancy into the picture. Both are life-changing events and are not to be taken lightly. Watch our free online seminar to see what makes our program so successful. When you’re ready to make the call, our care team will be here for you.