Bariatric Nurse Cyndi Iduate shares why a woman considering gastric bypass surgery should look for a hospital with a multi-disciplinary team.
Nurse Cyndi Iduate:
Well, definitely, it’s not just one-sided when you talk about the recovery of this patient. We have to deal with not only the physical aspect of the surgery but the emotional aspect of the surgery. Lot of questions that arise are nutritional questions, psychological questions, relationship questions, and medical questions. So therefore, we attack all three components in that support group.
We also use it as educational, the kind of support group whereas we invite guest speakers to come and talk about topics relevant to that post-operative patient or pre-operative patients because they may be seeking either plastic surgery, so we do invite plastic surgeons who specialize in the bariatric population. They know how to work the skin of that patient.
Personal trainers who deal with the bariatric patient population. It’s very important with that exercise that that trainer knows exactly what the surgery entails, what their consumption of food is. We do a lot of makeovers, clothing exchanges, so we make it fun. They are losing weight at a rapid rate, so why buy new clothes? One of the things that we want to do is to make sure that they don’t transfer their addiction from food to now shopping and get in debt, and that can happen. So therefore, we do that clothing exchange until they get to that stable weight where of course then they can go ahead and shop for their new clothes and, you know, their new outward appearance. So we do that.
A lot of patients don’t know how to dress unfortunately if they have been obese all their lives, they just don’t know. So we give that to them and we bring personal consultants, shopping consultants, so they tell them exactly how they should dress appropriately for their age, for their size. So we attack all that, and that is so important for the success of this patient. It’s just not about just the operation. It is a whole bunch of things rolled in together.
So we need to remember that. We need to remember that when we do that and that’s why it’s so important to have that kind of a team approach where we’re all attacking all those components.
About Cyndi Iduate, R.N.:
Cyndi Iduate, R.N., B.S.N, C.B.N., is a certified bariatric nurse coordinator and support group facilitator at South Miami Hospital in Florida. Cyndi lost 196 pounds after undergoing bariatric surgery.