Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
FAQ Before Surgery
Q: What can I eat and drink before Surgery?
A. You may not eat or drink anything (including Optifast) for six hours before surgery.
You may have very small sips of CLEAR WATER ONLY up to two hours before your
CAUTION: Eating or drinking too close to your scheduled surgery may require
rescheduling of your surgery.
Q. What medications may I TAKE on the day of surgery?
A. In general, blood pressure (heart) medications, anti-reflux medications, anti-seizure
medications and paracetamol containing pain medications (no aspirin or NSAIDs) should
be taken the morning of surgery with a sip of water.
Q. What medications should I STOP before surgery?
A. Anticoagulants (Blood Thinners) – Prescription anticoagulants must be Stopped 7 days
Non prescription anticoagulants (over the counter)
Aspirin may continue if required but do not resume until 7 days after surgery.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDs) STOP 7 days before surgery and do not resume
until 3 months after surgery.
Vitamin E – STOP 7 days before surgery
Garlic – STOP 7 days before surgery
Ginger – STOP 7 days before surgery
Ginkgo Biloba – STOP 7 days before surgery
St John’s Wort – STOP 7 days before surgery
Birth control pills – STOP 14 days before surgery (as it increases risk of blood clots) –
CONSULT YOUR GP for ALTERNATIVES.
Hormone Replace Therapy – STOP 14 days before surgery
Oral Diabetic Agents – DO NOT TAKE ON DAY OF SURGERY
Insulin – may be given in a reduced dose. Discuss with the Anaesthetist.
Topical Medications – Creams and Ointments – DISCONTINUE on DAY OF SURGERY
Viagra and similar – DISCONTINUE 2 DAYS before surgery
Q. What if I have a pacemaker or internal defibrillator?
Make sure you inform your surgeon and anaesthetist and bring the information card from
your device (brand, model, company, contact info).
What to expect:
✦ Your dressings will become stained with small amounts of blood for a few days.
✦ You can expect to experience some pain or discomfort at the operation site and/or
What you should do:
✦ Report any excessive bleeding, pain or swelling.
✦ Avoid any heavy lifting or driving until cleared.
✦ Report any persistent nausea or vomiting.
Care of your dressings
✦ The dressings are all water-proofed and may be showered over.
✦ Leave current dressings in placed for 3-4 days and then they may be removed.
✦ There are also steri-strips (paper strips) under the dressings. These will fall off in about
seven days. If they haven’t, then they maybe removed.
Eating and Drinking
✦ Follow diet as per instructions given by your dietitian.
✦ Should you experience any discomfit at home, please take medication as prescribed.
✦ Hot packs and tiger balm are beneficial for shoulder pain.
✦ Continue Anti-reflux medication for approximately 4 weeks if prescribed.
✦ Do not take anti-inflammatory medication unless ordered.
Please contact Dr. Braun or your GP if you have any concerns.
What Can I Eat After Surgery
We place all of our patients on a liquid diet for two weeks after surgery. This helps to
prevent complications by allowing your stomach to heal before it is stressed with more
solid food items.
After two weeks patients progress to a puree, two weeks of mashed, then softer diet for
another 2 weeks and then eventually regular food items. The diet is high protein (70
grams/day), low fat (30 grams/day) and low Carbohydrates (40 grams/day).
The total calories/day starts at about 400-500 and by the end of the first year most patients
are consuming about 1000-1200 calories per day of regular foods. Intolerance of some
food items will exist for most patients. You will eventually learn how many calories/day you
can consume to maintain your goal weight. This varies between men and women, amount
of exercise and your height.
Some of our taller, male patients consume up to 2000 calories per day and still maintain
We will provide you with a step-by-step diet guide prior to surgery, which will help guide
you through the postoperative phases of eating.