In fact, research has shown that pregnancy after weight loss surgery can be safer for both mother and baby than pregnancy complicated by obesity-related issues, such as gestational diabetes, high blood pressure and preeclampsia.
4 Facts to Know Before Becoming Pregnant
If you are planning to start or add to your family after your bariatric surgery, here are some key facts you should know:
1. You may get a boost in fertility.
Weight loss surgery can significantly increase your fertility.
The Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing found that post-op women with fertility problems linked to obesity often start ovulating regularly for the first time in years.
2. Hold off for 18 months to two years after surgery before trying to conceive.
This is due to the fact that women have a significantly restricted nutritional intake after surgery. Waiting a year and a half to two years offsets the possibility for maternal and fetal malnutrition that could result in small-for-gestational-age infants.
Also, this period allows a woman to (often) reach her goal weight and be optimally healthy to carry a pregnancy safely and successfully.
3. Make sure your future OB-GYN is familiar with treating women who have undergone #wls.
When the time comes to choose your OB-GYN, confirm from the start that the doctor is familiar with treating women who have undergone bariatric surgery. For some women who were very overweight before surgery, they may still be considered obese at the time of pregnancy, which can put mother and child at added risk for complications.
4. Partner with a registered dietitian before, during and after your pregnancy.
At Prime Surgicare (a leading bariatric practice in central New Jersey), you can continue working with our staff of specially-trained bariatric nutritionists before, during and after your pregnancy. They will closely monitor you to ensure you are getting additional nutritional needs including folic acid, vitamin B-12, vitamin D, iron and calcium — in addition to a daily prenatal vitamin before and during pregnancy.
If you’ve waited to become pregnant until after weight loss, smart move! I hope these tips and tools will help you develop a roadmap to a happy and healthy pregnancy.
About Dr. Seun Sowemimo, MD, FACS
Dr. Seun is a top NJ bariatric surgeon and the medical director at Prime Surgicare, with offices in Freehold serving Monmouth and Ocean counties. He is board-certified, Columbia and Yale University fellowship-trained in advanced laparoscopic, bariatric and general surgery.
To learn more, visit his YouTube channel or call Prime Surgicare at (732)-982-2002.