After undergoing successful weight loss surgery in Mexico, specifically gastric bypass, there is a high likelihood that you will experience pain on the left side of your body. While experiencing pain immediately after the surgery is expected, pain that’s chronic and persistent should not be ignored. Pain is very personal in that the way people ate varies from one person to the other. Any pain, especially the chronic kind is unwanted and this article seeks to provide you with information to help you manage the pain.
Causes of left side pain after gastric bypass surgery
Gastric bypass surgery often involves the making of a cut below the ribs by the surgeon as he attempts to staple the intestines that have been rerouted. As this happens, there is stretching occurs which can lead to the bruising of muscles. It is also likely that some nerves can get damaged which can lead to horrible pain on the left side of the body below the ribs and usually lasts for a couple of weeks. You can reduce or get relief from the pain by changing your posture or moving your torso. With time you will adjust and accommodate the pain even as you go through the healing process from the surgery.
During the surgery, carbon dioxide (CO2) is normally used to expand the stomach to create more space to perform the procedure. After the surgery, the excess CO2 remains in the abdominal cavity. By default, the CO2 collects on the left side of the abdomen and this leads to horrible pain. The pain will either be on the left side of the abdomen or the left shoulder.
The best way to manage this pain is to walk as soon as you can immediately after the procedure. Walking will increase the absorption of the CO2 gas as it makes it move more. Deep breathing is also an excellent way to manage the pain as it puts pressures on the abdomen which in turn pushes out the gas.
While it’s normal to anticipate pain within the first few weeks post-surgery, it is important that you follow all the recommendations given by your doctor regarding pain management. Pain in areas such as the left shoulder, severe stomach pain, sharp pain below the breast bone, and severe heartburn should not be ignored as it can be an indicator of more serious complications
What can I take after gastric sleeve surgery?
Your healthcare provider will advise you on any medication that you will need to take to manage your pain. Don’t self-medicate since some of the medication can cause more harm than good. Learn more about what pain medications you can take after gastric sleeve surgery!