Rocket Fuel
Advanced Search
Print    Email
Decrease (-) Restore Default Increase (+)
Find a Physician

Preparing for Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

Preoperative Timeline

Your surgeon will provide you with instructions for preparing for surgery that are specific to your needs. This information provides general guidelines for potential bariatric surgery patients.


4-6 Months Before Surgery
Attend a  Surgical Weight-Loss Informational Meeting at Holy Cross Hospital or Holy Cross Germantown Hospital to receive preoperative education and to help you decide if weight-loss surgery is right for you.

3 Months Before Surgery
  • Start exercising 20 to 30 minutes, 3 to 5 times per week, getting your heart rate up to 60 to 80 percent of your predicted maximal heart rate. To calculate your rate, subtract your age from 220. For example, if you are 40 years old, 220-40=180. Next, take 60 to 80 percent of the result to determine your predicted maximal heart rate, which in this example would range from 108 to 144. Holy Cross Health offers a variety of fitness and movement classes. View more information or call 301-754-8800.
  • Schedule a sleep study (polysomnogram). The Sleep Center at Holy Cross Hospital can perform this requirement. For more information, call 301-754-7969.
  • Recommended: Continue attending the Surgical Weight Loss Informational Meetings at Holy Cross Hospital or Holy Cross Germantown Hospital.
  • Meet with a nutritionist and get started on prescribed vitamins. Your bariatric surgeon’s office will provide the name and phone number of a nutritionist. Outpatient nutrition counseling is available at Holy Cross Hospital. For more information, call 301-754-7848.
  • Meet with a mental health provider.
  • If you are diabetic, stick to your diet and check your blood sugars as directed by your primary care physician. The goal blood sugar is 100 to 200 mg/dl.
  • Have all of your medical issues addressed and take all prescribed medications.
  • Make arrangements with your employer to take time off, secure help at home from family members, etc.
2 Months Before Surgery

Complete all of the above. If your initial sleep study diagnosis is obstructive sleep apnea, get the second (titration) sleep study done and start using your nasal CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) mask right away.

Make sure you have all appointments with the necessary specialists scheduled to obtain medical clearance.

1 Month Before Surgery

Arrange any necessary pre-operative testing with your primary care physician.

Stay on course. Exercise. Take your vitamins and medications as prescribed. Use your nasal CPAP.

2 Weeks Before Surgery

If you have not yet been contacted to schedule a pre-admission testing appointment, call the Ambulatory Care Center (ACC) at 301-754-7290 for Holy Cross Hospital or  301-754-8200 for Holy Cross Germantown Hospital to inquire.

The appointment should take place one week prior to your surgery. During your visit to the ACC, you will be interviewed by a nurse. A physician's assistant also will assess your anesthesia needs.

In order to do a complete review of your medical history, all pre-operative testing should be completed prior to your ACC visit. Ensure your primary care physician faxes your H&P (history and physical) and current laboratory work, EKG and chest X-ray results.

A hospital staff member will contact you before the day of your surgery to gather pertinent information including hospitalization/insurance coverage. You will also be informed of any financial obligations.

ACC Fax Number for Holy Cross Hospital: 301-754-7286
ACC Fax Number for Holy Cross Germantown Hospital: 301-557-5550

1 Week Before Surgery

Do not take aspirin, aspirin products, or any type of blood thinner for seven (7) days before your day of surgery. Examples include, but are not limited to, ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, Aleve, Alka Seltzer) and other cold medicines.

If you take any medications (prescription or “over-the-counterâ€쳌), please check with your physician and/or anesthesiologist about whether you should take them on the day of your surgery.

24 Hours Before Surgery

If applicable, do not take Glucophage 48 hours before surgery.

Day Before Surgery

Limit your diet to liquids only. This includes water, coffee or tea without milk or cream, clear broth, JELL-O, and clear juice without pulp (apple juice is okay, orange juice is not).

Do not drink carbonated beverages on the day before your surgery.

As an infection control measure, wash your body from your nipple line to your thighs with antimicrobial 2% Cholorhexine wipes (do not rinse off). Your skin might feel tacky. You will repeat this cleansing procedure the morning of surgery.

Day of Surgery

As an infection control measure, wash your body from your nipple line to your thighs with antimicrobial 2% Cholorhexine wipes (do not rinse off). Your skin might feel tacky.
If you have a CPAP machine, please bring it with you to the hospital.

  Holy Cross Hospital
  Holy Cross Germantown Hospital

© 2016  Holy Cross Health | 1500 Forest Glen Road, Silver Spring, MD 20910 | 301-754-7000