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For many, the day of surgery is an exciting end to a long wait.

Before the day of your surgery, you will be given a number of specific instructions to follow such as:

  • Do not drink or eat anything prior to surgery, beginning midnight before your procedure
  • Most medicines can be taken the day of surgery with small sips of water (however, you may get instructions regarding specific medications)
  • Arrive early; our hospital requires patients arrive up to two hours before the scheduled start time

When you arrive, there will be a few preoperative steps:

  • You will change out of your clothes
  • You will see the preoperative and operating room nurses
  • You will see your surgeon as well as your anesthesiologist
  • An IV line will be started to keep you hydrated and to administer medications such as antibiotics
  • After your preoperative preparation you will be taken to the operating room

In the operating room:

  • Medicines will be given to help you relax and drift off to sleep
  • A breathing tube will be placed
  • Your surgeon will perform the operation
  • Gastric bypass procedures usually take about 2 to 3 hours, gastric sleeves take about 1 hour

After surgery:

  • Your healthcare team will make sure your vital signs are acceptable and take you to a recovery room
  • After recovery, if you have had gastric bypass, you will go to your room; gastric sleeve patients can often go home

What to expect next:

Benefits of Weight Loss Surgery Candidates for Weight Loss Surgery Procedures Offered at UNC Taking The First Steps What To Expect Seminars & Support Groups