A very commonly asked question is: What is a preoperative diet? Prior to undergoing a weight loss procedure, the Surgeon will require the patient to follow a specific diet, this is known as a ‘preoperative diet’. This diet includes an OPTIFAST program along with other dietary specifications which are given to you by our Dietitian during your initial Dietitian consultation. The standard duration of a preoperative diet is 2 weeks, however this may increase according to your BMI and health factors, the Surgeon will determine this for you.
Another commonly asked question is: Can the preoperative diet be skipped? The short answer to this question is no, but for very good reasons. Why you ask?
The main goal of the preoperative diet is to shrink the size the liver. Did you know that the liver of an obese person is much larger than a person with a normal BMI? Many people are unaware that in order to perform a bariatric procedure the liver must be lifted to access the stomach. A large liver unaided by a preoperative diet can:
- Constrict the surgeon when performing the laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery
- Lower visibility
- Increase operating time
- Increase surgical complications
Non-compliance of the preoperative diet can result in the cancellation of the procedure, therefore it is of upmost importance to adhere to the guidelines.