Conquering Comfort: Talking to Your Doctor About Pain Management After Bariatric Surgery

Conquering Comfort: Talking to Your Doctor About Pain Management After Bariatric Surgery

Conquering Comfort: Talking to Your Doctor About Pain Management After Bariatric Surgery

Weight loss surgery is a life-changing decision, and with it comes the normal concern about post-surgical pain management. While some discomfort is expected, a productive conversation with your doctor about pain control options can ensure a smoother recovery. This blog post will equip you with tips for discussing pain management and explore the benefits of minimizing opioid use.

Open Communication is Key 

At your pre-surgery surgical consultation, plan to ask your surgeon and care team about pain management options during your procedure and after. YES- there are medications that you can be administered *during your surgery* that will mitigate and manage your pain, setting you up for success during your recovery! 

BariNation Podcast epiosde graphic with Dr. Panait talking about pain managementWe didn't know that was even a thing until our recent podcast interview with Dr. Lucian Panait, a lead bariatric surgeon who makes patient care and pain management a top priority in his practice. He uses a drug called Exparel during his bariatric surgeries that helps patients recovery at a faster rate and gets them up and moving sooner rather than later! Click HERE to listen to this latest episode and HERE to watch!



Conversation Starters

Be clear about your pain tolerance and any past experiences with medication. Here are some questions to get the conversation started:

  • What types of pain management strategies will be used during surgery?
  • What pain medication options will be available after surgery?
  • Are there non-opioid alternatives for pain control?

The makers of Exparel have put together a fantastic discussion starter worksheet that you can print out at home and take with you to your doctor's appointment. Click HERE to access this free resource, check all of the boxes that apply to you, download and print out! 

The Case for Minimizing Opioids

Opioids are powerful pain relievers, but they can come with a host of side effects like constipation, nausea, and drowsiness. These side effects can hinder your recovery and delay your return to normal activities. Studies suggest that a multimodal approach, combining non-opioid medications with other techniques like nerve blocks and ice therapy, can be just as effective in managing post-surgical pain.

So many Americans and their families have been impacted by the opioid epidemic. It is ok if you want to avoid taking these kinds of medications. You are entitled to the care that is right for YOU. 

Advocate for Yourself

Don't hesitate to express your concerns about opioid use. Your doctor will work with you to create a personalized pain management plan that prioritizes your comfort and minimizes unwanted side effects. By openly discussing your options, you can empower yourself for a successful recovery journey.

Remember: Bariatric surgery is a big step towards a healthier you. By planning ahead and having an open conversation with your doctor, you can ensure a comfortable and successful recovery.

If you would like some support preparing for your bariatric surgery, join the BariNation Membership Community! Each week, members attend support groups, classes, and meetups hosted by licensed and credential experts that set them up for success before and after surgery. Learn more about our 100% online, private community at


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