Most people experience no serious problems after weight loss surgery,
In most cases, post-bariatric surgery constipation is temporary and not serious. Understanding the causes, prevention and treatment will help most people find relief.
Constipation becomes more severe the longer it lasts. As the length of time between bowel movements increase, more water is absorbed back into the bloodstream, causing the stool to harden in the colon (large intestine). The body has 28 feet of intestines. Gas and pain may be associated with constipation.
In many cases, constipation after weight loss surgery is caused by:
Because of potential problems with hemorrhoids, hernias
If you are on an iron supplement, it may be necessary to take a stool softener for the first month or so until you can drink more fluids and eat more fiber. Stool softeners such as Colace are available
If your problem is still not resolved, you may use a Dulcolax suppository, Fleets enema or Milk of Magnesia.
If you still have a problem, don’t hesitate to call your surgeon’s office.
DO NOT TAKE LAXATIVES on a regular basis. Your bowels can become dependent on these medications and normal bowel movements may not resume.
It is important to recognize that some bowel function problems are not related to bariatric surgery and a relationship should not be automatically assumed. A recent change in bowel function that is NOT readily attributable to the bariatric operation or that is not easily corrected may require further diagnostic measures for complete evaluation.
That being said, most instances of constipation during the first three months after weight loss surgery are usually attributed to the surgery itself. This is a common side effect of all weight loss surgery types (Lap Band, Gastric Sleeve and Gastric Bypass).