Summary: Can you have gastric sleeve surgery while on your period? This is a common question for women who are planning to undergo this weight loss procedure. The answer is yes, but there are some things you need to consider. In this article, we will discuss five important aspects of having gastric sleeve surgery while on your period.
1. Timing of the Procedure
Gastric sleeve surgery is safe to perform during menstruation. However, timing is an essential consideration. Women are usually advised not to schedule their surgery during their period. If you have regular menstrual periods, it may be best to plan the procedure between periods. Scheduling ahead of time and informing your surgeon about your menstrual cycle can help them recommend the best time for the procedure.
During menstruation, the flow of blood in your body is higher compared to other days. As a result, your blood pressure may be slightly higher than usual. High blood pressure can increase your risk of bleeding and other surgical complications. Therefore, if you decide to proceed during your period, your surgeon may need to take extra precautions to minimize the risk of any complications.
If you’re experiencing heavy bleeding during menstruation, it’s a good idea to postpone the surgery until the flow reduces. Heavier bleeding days can increase the chances of complications like heavy bleeding or infection after surgery. Therefore, it’s always better to check with your surgeon about any questions you may have concerning your period.
2. Comfort During and after Surgery
Experiencing discomfort during menstrual periods is common. Providers will offer you pain killers to reduce any cramps or discomfort during the surgery. You’ll also be given medication to help manage post-surgery pains. Your doctor may need to increase the dosage as needed based on how you progress after the surgery. It’s important to communicate your concerns and any pain levels you experience to your surgeon to manage the discomfort effectively.
You may also experience bloating after gastric sleeve surgery, which can be uncomfortable, especially if you’re on your period. You can take any medication prescribed by your doctor and avoid foods that are gas-producing. It’s essential to stay well-hydrated, but watch for carbonated drinks and caffeine because they can increase bloating.
The recovery process after surgery may take longer than usual if you’re on your period. Most women report feeling fatigued during periods, so it may take longer for your body to get back to normal. Be sure to get plenty of rest and listen to your body when it needs rest. If you feel any intense pain or discomfort, contact your surgeon immediately for a check-up.
3. Risk of Infection
The risk of infection increases during menstruation due to the high levels of bacteria present in the vaginal region. Infection at the surgical site is an infrequent event, but it’s higher when a woman is on her period. Before the surgery, the surgeon will advise you on ways to reduce the risk of getting infections and what you need to do to prepare for the surgery.
Many providers recommend taking a warm shower before surgery to cleanse the body and reduce the risk of infection. Additionally, they recommend the use of sanitary napkins instead of tampons to decrease the risk of bacterial transfer. It’s best to follow your surgeon’s pre-surgery instructions to minimize any risks to the surgery.
Right after the surgery, the surgical site will be bandaged or covered to avoid infection. You’ll have to attend follow-up appointments to monitor the healing process, and the surgeon may prescribe antibiotics to prevent infection. If you notice any signs of infection-like increased heat, swelling, redness, or pain, contact your doctor immediately.
4. Hormonal Changes
During menstrual cycles, there may be hormonal changes that can affect the surgery’s results. Gastric sleeve surgery alters the anatomy of the digestive tract and can impact hormones controlling appetite. Hormonal factors can also affect weight loss over time, so it’s important to be aware of these changes.
The changes in hormones post-surgery can lead to a delay in menstrual cycles. Some women report having lighter periods or missing periods altogether after the surgery. It’s best to discuss these issues with your surgeon because hormonal changes can affect your weight loss journey. You may need to adjust medications or take hormone supplements to manage the effect of gastric surgery on your hormones and menstrual cycle.
If you plan on having children in the future, it’s important to discuss with your doctor how the surgery may affect fertility. Changes in the menstrual cycle can impact ovulation, which can negatively impact pregnancy. Women on hormonal birth control should discuss alternative methods with their surgeon before the surgery.
5. Preparing for Surgery While on Your Period
Preparing for gastric sleeve surgery is an exciting time that requires careful planning. If you’re scheduled to undergo surgery while still on your period, there are several things you need to prepare for:
Sanitary Products: Stock up on sanitary products like pads and liners. Although some women prefer tampons, it’s best to avoid them because they can introduce bacteria to your body and increase the risk of infection.
Clothing: Choose comfortable clothing that’s easy to wear after surgery. Loose tops, tracksuits, and slip-on shoes are your best bet. It’s not recommended to wear tight-fitting clothes with waistbands around your incision site.
Hygiene: Maintaining good hygiene is essential in preventing post-surgery infection. Clean yourself properly and stay scent-free before the surgery. If you have long hair, consider tying it up to avoid contamination during the operation.
Gastric sleeve surgery is a significant procedure that can help women achieve their weight loss goals. Whether you decide to undergo surgery while on your period or not, there are several things you need to consider. Timing, comfort, risk of infection, hormonal changes, and preparation are all important aspects to think about before your surgery date. It’s always best to discuss any concerns with your surgeon so that they can provide personalized advice for your unique situation.
By following these guidelines, you’ll be prepared for your upcoming gastric sleeve surgery and focused on achieving your weight loss goals.