Bariatric Surgery in Mexico FAQs

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General FAQs

Bariatric surgery in Mexico is completely safe. We only used a trusted, in-network team of drivers to help sure safety when traveling across the border. We have numerous years of experience in developing a great package that patients will feel safe using.

Additional Information:

All of our bariatric packages include the the option to include one companion at no additional cost. If you’re looking to add more than one companion, there is an additional fee. Please consult with our patient care to learn more.

You should schedule your inbound flight to San Diego International airport before 11am. You should also schedule your outbound flight (from San Diego International airport to airport near your home) after 1pm.

Pricing and Booking FAQs

The age requirement is usually a minimum age of 18 and a maximum age of 64. Please contact us today to learn more – there are some exceptions, but it’s a case by case basis.

We currently do not offer in-house financing, but we have made connections with leading financing companies to help you pay for your procedure.

No. CareCredit does not allow/ will not accept from ANY providers in Mexico. 

Yes, we do accept HSA cards for the deposit, please contact our patient coordinators today to schedule your surgery.

For the final balance an invoice will be issued to the HSA company for reimbursement, in which they will cut a check to Renew or the patient prior to surgery.

Pre-Op Diet & Preparation

Your specific pre-op diet is determined by the nutritionist and surgeon once you are scheduled for surgery.  Once you are serious about moving forward and have scheduled a date this will be provided to you with a specific timeline and details.

The diet focuses on a combination of high-protein meals and protein shakes, while eliminating carbs and sugars.

The pre-op duration and menu is determined on various factors:

  • BMI 
  • Procedure
  • Bariatric Surgery History
  • Goals

The purpose of the bariatric surgery pre-operative diet is to aid in a successful surgery.  The main goal typically is to shrink your liver so the doctor can access your stomach easier. Sometimes weight-loss goals will be established by the doctor for certain procedures or BMIs. 

The diet is critical for preparing your body physically and mentally for the procedure and post-op preparation.

Not following the diet will make the surgery harder for the surgeon. Mistakes are ok, but we do encourage strict adherence and getting back on track as best as possible. 

 

Occasionally, certain goals for clearance are established and communicated to specific patients for a BMI over 50  or certain procedures, in this case yes it does put you procedure in jeopardy. We will get medical team in touch.

A BMI of 30 is the threshold for medical necessity, falling below 30 will not disqualify you. Use our bariatric surgery calculator to find out your BMI now.

Yes, you must stop smoking a minimum of 30 days before surgery. This includes the patch, nicotine gum, nicotine vaping (0% (no nicotine) vape is ok). Nicotine of any form can cause slow healing and leaks.

Post-Operatively this is important as well for minimum of 4 weeks, smoking can cause clotting and slow healing.

Yes, at minimum 7 days in advance. NSAIDS are classified as blood-thinners. 

Not stopping will require additional medicine that has extra costs.

Yes, at minimum 7 days in advance. Hormones are classified as blood-thinners. 

Not stopping will require additional medicine that has extra costs.

Yes, at minimum 7 days in advance. Vitamins and supplements are not regulated by the FDA and have little studies on the effects of surgery and clotting and could be blood-thinners. 

Not stopping will require additional medicine that has extra costs.

Miralax, docusate, bisacodyl or any brand only once. Overnight laxative is best.

Can only be repeated once per 36-hour period.

  • Broth
  • SF Popsicles
  • SF Jello
  • SF Juice
  • Water w/flavoring, electrolyte water, or plain water – must achieve 64oz/day

Pre-Op Testing FAQs

Unless you have a specific concern or our doctor’s have requested a specific test or information for medical clearance no pre-op testing is required at home. 

Testing company: https://www.ultalabtests.com/partners/ultdirect

All tests required here will be repeated the day of surgery regardless of your results submitted due to day of clearance requirements.

Typical pre-op testing before any bariatric surgery in Mexico is: 

  • Blood Panel: CBC, CMP, WBC, Platelets, Type, Infectious Diseases, and etc.
  • EKG
  • Spirometry (breathing test to identify pulmonary function)
  • Full Exam by Internal Medicine Doctor
  • Anesthesiologist review
  • Thorax X-Ray (Chest radiograph) 

Additional testing may be required by our surgeons or medical staff. 

Possible Testing:

  • Barium swallow may be required for revisions occasionally
  • Lapband or other revision may require endoscopy

Extra testing that is rarely required and best suited before coming to Mexico:

  • Cardiologist clearance 
  • ECG
  • Endoscopy

If you have been honest and accurate on your intake form there is no reason that this would be the case if you are in normal health with the exception of undisclosed or conditions you are aware of/unaware of.

Our surgical team and doctors would never proceed with surgery if you had a life threatening condition that would risk your life by completing your surgery.

Examples of this would be a tumor found during surgery, chronic cough or cold, extreme bloodwork levels. If you believe that there is something that would impact your surgery please let us know immediately.

Surgical and Surgery FAQs

The bougie size will typically 36 French. Your bougie size will be performed and selected at the discretion of the surgeon based on the anatomy of each patient, medical history, patient risk, various other factors.

  • What is the Bougie – calibrated tube inserted in stomach endoscopy through the trach used as guide for cutting and stapling along to measure and form new pouch. Provides structure and size of new stomach.
  • Renew Doctors: 36F Typically*
  • 36F for us equals safe potential for maximum weight loss – balance of safety and results
  • US Surgeons via insurance: Typically >40 (smaller bougie equals more complications)

*No guarantee is made on size, it will be selected at the discretion of the surgeon based on the anatomy of each patient, medical history, patient risk, various other factors

All of our bariatric surgeons use a six-line staple gun, which produces lowers rates of staple line leaks.

Yes, (3) leak tests are completed and passed prior to discharge.  

(2) tests are done in the OR – a blue dye test and a PSI test with air to identify any leaks prior to leaving OR. 

A final leak test is performed outside of the OR with a barium swallow via x-ray. The x-ray will be provided to you upon discharge. 

A variation of General Anesthesia (patient is fully sedated/asleep) is used and is specific to each patient but typically: Propofol, Fentanyl and Vecuronium, followed by Maintenance Oxygen + Desfluorane. 

 

For Gastric Balloon Procedure: Twilight sedation.

Some level of pain is to be expected from a surgical procedure. Though pain from laparoscopic bariatric surgery is typically less than one might expect, it is important to remember that everyone experiences pain differently.

Please let your surgical team or nurse know if you are experiencing pain. Some patients use no pain medication at all once they are home; others do.

Remember – you are an individual with individual needs. Patients with previous pain medication prescriptions will have a lower threshold for the pain due to the tolerance built-up. IV bueporphine is available for $150 during your stay but is subject to approval by the doctor and dosing is at the discretion of the medical team.

Most pain experienced is gas pain – it is important to start walking 

Pain medication patients:

Due to history of opioid use, pain management will be difficult while in hospital and post-operative. Pain medication will be upgraded to  buprenorphine after approval and pre-op testing review by anesthesiologist and doctor on the day of surgery.  With frequent use of pain medication, patients still feel pain with  buprenorphine. Standard pain medication will be given at discharge. Please bring medication in label bottle for use post-op after discharge.

4-5 depending upon how well you have done on your pre-op diet.

Doing the pre-op diet well can eliminate (1) incision for the liver retractor.

SILS (1) incision above/at belly button plus drain.

Surgery times are not determined until the day of surgery and vary based on various factors each day:

  • OR schedule (other doctor’s schedules and delays and emergencies)
  • Arrival Time
  • Pre-op testing completion
  • Anesthesiologist determines order of patients after blood work is complete
  • Surgeon orders patients based on various factors: complexity, BMI, bloodwork and etc.

Medications FAQs

Yes we provide you all the medications to go home with along with a written prescription for crossing the border (proof). 

There is no additional cost for these medications, unless something out of the ordinary is required that was not disclosed to us. 

We do not drop our patients off at a pharmacy or charge extra for our standard required medications.

Each patient is treated individually and each patient experience can vary, allergies and etc., but typically you are always sent home with the following medications at a minimum:

Sleeve/Bypass:

  • Pain Medication (Sublingual Keterolaco – similar to Toradol)
  • Antibiotic (Not for Perez patients) (Cefalexina or Levofloxacino – subject to no Penicillin allergy)
  • Proton Pump Inhibitor “PPI” (Omeprazole – “Prilosec”)
  • Antacid Gel (Galaver)

Balloon:

  • Ondasetron (Nausea) 
  • Antispasmodic (Butilhioscina and metamizol)
  • Antacid – Galaver (Magadaltrato/dimeticona)
  • Proton Pump Inhibitor “PPI” (Omeprazole)

Yes there are pharmacies across from the hotel that you can access, if the driver has time they may be able to take you by car to a different pharmacy. 

If at SER Hospital there is a pharmacy at the bottom of the hospital.

Incisions should be fully healed – approximately 4 weeks. Until this time do not submerge the incision in water. 

 

Post-Op FAQs

Varies based on your job. 

Suggested:

Desk Job: 1 week

Physical job w/o lifting, bending, twisting: 2 weeks

Physical job w/ lifting, bending, twisting: 6 weeks

Please wait at least 6 weeks for lifting over 10-15 lbs.

6 weeks no lifting, bending, twisting or exercise other than stationary bike or walking is permitted immediately provided you are getting 64oz of water and 2-3 protein shakes a day, otherwise your body does not have enough energy to expend.

Incisions should be fully healed – approximately 4 weeks. Until this time do not submerge the incision in water. 

 

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