Diarrhea is prevalent after gastric sleeve surgery. But why does this happen?
Is this diarrhea after surgery dangerous?
Will the person have diarrhea forever?
To answer these and many other questions, stay with us until the end of this text.
Table of Contents
The first word with you:
Diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery can be annoying for patients.
But this complication is entirely normal and can have various causes.
Many patients have diarrhea after this procedure. Diarrhea is a completely normal side effect after gastric sleeve surgery.
This complication disappears with time. But if it is long or severe, it should be treated.
Fortunately, there are ways to treat this unpleasant side effect.
But first of all, the causes of this complication should be investigated.
In this article, the medical team of Dr. Farbad Emami Yeganeh joins us to fully discuss the causes of this complication and the treatment methods.
Causes of diarrhea after sleeve operation:
Diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery is very common among patients and is usually temporary. Diarrhea usually occurs when the body cannot absorb nutrients and fluids quickly enough.
As a result, the stool becomes loose and watery and diarrhea occurs.
This problem usually occurs in the first week after the gastric sleeve.
There are various reasons for this condition.
In the following, we will mention some of the most important causes of this complication.
Changes in diet:
Stomach capacity decreases significantly after sleeve surgery.
As a result, it is necessary to make changes in the patient’s diet so that the body meets its need for nutrients.
The volume of meals should be reduced and their number should be increased throughout the day.
Consumption of fatty and sweet foods should be strictly limited.
The consumption of nutritious and low-calorie foods should be increased.
As a result, the set of these changes can cause a disorder in the patient’s diet and make him suffer from diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery.
Dysfunction of the digestive system:
The complete lack of adaptation of the digestive system to the changes made is one of the reasons why patients suffer from diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery.
The digestive system has not yet adapted to the changes that have occurred in the body for weight loss.
Diarrhea has nothing to do with leakage after gastric sleeve surgery.
The digestive system must adapt over time to the fact that the new stomach requires less food and must produce less stomach acid.
For this reason, drugs that control stomach acid are usually prescribed after this procedure.
Therefore, one of the causes of diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery can be excessive production of stomach acid.
High fiber intake:
One of the causes of diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery can be the high consumption of fiber, more than what the body needs.
Consuming a lot of fiber leads to an increase in the movement of the intestines and the time it takes for food to pass through them. The digestive system is designed to digest and absorb food over a long period.
Since the stomach is smaller after the operation, food passes through this route faster.
To slow down the speed of food, the digestive system increases the duration of its transportation and shelf life.
As a result, there are higher concentrations of digestive juices in this area, which leads to diarrhea.
Not drinking enough water:
Dehydration can be another cause of diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery.
Diarrhea occurs when there is not enough water in the body to dilute the digestive juices.
Patients often think they are drinking enough water, but their urine volume belies this.
Therefore, according to the doctor’s advice, drink enough water to avoid complications such as diarrhea.
Make sure you drink at least 1.9 liters of water a day after gastric sleeve surgery.
Malabsorption of nutrients:
If the body cannot receive the nutrients from the food it eats, it will be malnourished.
After the sleeve surgery, the volume of the stomach is reduced and it becomes difficult to digest some foods, including carbohydrates and fats.
As a result, the risk of malabsorption of nutrients increases and diarrhea occurs.
In these cases, the use of digestive enzymes or probiotics is recommended.
Treatment of diarrhea after gastric sleeve operation:
Fortunately, diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery is a common side effect that subsides over time.
But if you get this complication after the operation, you need to discuss this issue with your doctor.
Because there are simple solutions to treat this condition.
Treatment solutions for diarrhea after sleeve operation:
In the following, we will refer to the most important keys for the treatment of diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery.
Increasing the amount of water consumed:
Adjust the amount of water you drink according to your doctor’s advice. This is part of your post-surgery diet and should be taken seriously.
Increase fiber intake gradually:
Consumption of fiber in your daily diet after gastric sleeve operation should not be done all at once.
It is better to gradually add foods containing fiber to your diet.
Your fiber intake should not exceed 20 grams per day. Try to include this amount in every meal or snack during the day.
The use of medicine to treat the complication of diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery should be prescribed by a doctor.
Usually, taking antacids is recommended by the doctor to control the amount of stomach acid production.
Loperamide is also used to stop diarrhea. This drug can stop diarrhea for up to 48 hours.
If the patient’s diarrhea is accompanied by colic and pain, the doctor usually prescribes hyoscine or hyoscine to the patient.
These referees can also treat heartburn with diarrhea within 24 to 48 hours.
The complication of diarrhea after gastric sleeve surgery should not last more than a few days or a week.
If you have diarrhea for more than this time, you should contact your bariatric surgeon. If you have temporary diarrhea, don’t worry.
This is a completely normal situation and you can control it with simple solutions such as not consuming lactose, not consuming water with meals, not consuming fatty, high-calorie, and spicy foods, and consuming probiotic yogurts.
The possibility of diarrhea complications after gastric sleeve operation is much less than in other bariatric surgeries such as gastric bypass.
Treatment of diarrhea is easily possible:
It takes time for the digestive system to adapt to new conditions. So you have to be patient and don’t panic.
Do all the solutions mention correctly?
But if the diarrhea is not cured after taking the medicine, be sure to contact your surgeon.
Your doctor is the only one who can make decisions about how to eat and balance different foods and medications.
In some cases, no medication is needed, and diarrhea can be treated with dietary changes by your doctor.
Sometimes, the patient’s diarrhea is controlled only by eliminating foods containing fat, sugar, alcohol, caffeine, gluten, and lactose.
The gradual addition of food and fluids to the diet is very important for the treatment of diarrhea after bariatric surgery, including gastric sleeve. You should also stay hydrated and drink plenty of water.