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Preparing for Your Bariatric Surgery at UPMC in Central Pa.

A successful bariatric surgery requires careful preparation. Shopping for the proper food, packing for your hospital stay and changing your pre-operative diet are just a few of the items on your surgery preparation list.

Keep a pre-op preparation checklist to help you organize and prepare for your surgery.

Pre-Op Preparations

  • High Protein diet as ordered for higher BMI patients.
  • Pre-surgery tests. Pre-op testing may include blood work, Electrocardiogram (EKG), and possibly more.
  • Stop smoking. If you smoke you will be required to quit before surgery.
  • Medications. Consult with your doctor about what medicines you can and cannot take leading up to your surgery.
  • Transportation. Make sure you have someone to drive you home from the hospital. You will not be able to drive yourself home after surgery.

What to Pack for Your Hospital Stay

Depending on what type of surgery you have, your hospital stay can range anywhere from 1 to 2 nights. You should talk to your doctor about how long he expects you to stay in the hospital and then pack a bag accordingly. Include one extra days worth of clothing just to be safe. Always include the following items in your packed bag.

  • Loose pants
  • Oversized shirts/tops
  • Comfortable shoes that slip on and off easily
  • Toothbrush

Preparing Your Home Before Surgery

  • Clear all walkways in the house - especially between the bathroom, bedroom and kitchen.
  • If you have pets, arrange to have someone walk and look after them during and immediately after surgery.


Pick up these items before you have your surgery so you have the proper food to eat once you return home from the hospital.

  • Sugar free jello
  • Sugar free pudding
  • Plain yogurt
  • Gatorade, reduced calorie G2
  • 2% cottage cheese singles
  • 1% Milk
  • Egg substitute (in a carton) or egg white product
  • Sugar free popsicles (Edy’s Fruit Bars, No Sugar Added)
  • Protein drinks
  • Crystal Light or Sugar Free Kool-Aid
  • Low fat soups
  • Applesauce - sugar free
  • Skinless poultry (turkey, ground turkey, chicken)

Medicine & Supplies to Have at Home

Have the following medications and supplies in the house when you get home from your surgery.

  • Tums
  • Milk of Magnesia
  • Tylenol
  • Large bandages
  • Neosporin
  • Peroxide

Need more information?

  • Medical Weight Management: 717-591-5638
  • UPMC Central PA Weight Management Center: 717-988-8185

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