Medications, Vitamins, and Minerals

Weight loss surgery affects your ability to tolerate certain medications, and your nutritional intake. Please review the information below to see what medications you should avoid, and which vitamin and mineral supplements you will need to take. The information varies depending on which form of surgery you have had.

Adjustable Laparoscopic Banding

Medications to Avoid Postoperatively

Avoid these medications for the FIRST MONTH after surgery, due to the risk of bleeding:

NSAIDS (see common names listed below)

  • Advil
  • Motrin (Ibuprofen)
  • Aleve (Naproxyn)
  • Relafen
  • Voltaren
  • Mobic

Aspirin (or medications that contain aspirin)
Excedrin
Plavix

Required Vitamins and Minerals

Multivitamin: Because you will be eating less, it will be difficult to get all of the vitamins and minerals that your body needs. You need to take one multivitamin each day. Your dietitian and surgeon will determine the need for other supplements. If you have difficulty swallowing pills, chewable vitamins are a good option.

Calcium: Most people do not get enough calcium even when they don’t have weight loss surgery. You should take 500 mg of calcium, twice a day, to be sure that you get the calcium that you need. You do not have to take any special brand or form of calcium. Keep in mind that chewables will be better tolerated than large pills.

Tips: Start taking your vitamins when you start your pureed diet. To avoid nausea, do not take vitamins and minerals on an empty stomach. Also avoid taking vitamins with coffee or tea.

Gastric Bypass

Medications to Avoid Postoperatively

Avoid these medications because they could cause ulcers in your pouch.

NSAIDS (see common names listed below):

  • Advil
  • Motrin (Ibuprofen)
  • Aleve (Naproxyn)
  • Relafen
  • Voltaren
  • Mobic

Aspirin (or medications that contain aspirin)
Excedrin
Plavix
Sustained release medications

Required Vitamins and Minerals

Calcium Citrate

You must take at least 1500 mg of calcium citrate per day. DO NOT TAKE PRODUCTS THAT CONTAIN CALCIUM CARBONATE, such as Viactiv, Tums and Caltrate. These products need stomach acid to be activated, and patients who have had gastric bypass surgery will not be able to absorb these products very well. The following is a list of suggested calcium products:

Vitamin Brand   Amount per Tab  Availability
Bariatric Advantage Calcium Citrate 200 mg/tab (4 per day) BariatricAdvantage.com
TwinLabs 250 mg/tab (6 per day) VitaminShoppe
Solaray 250 mg/tab (6 per day) VitaminShoppe
Puritan’s Pride Calcium Citrate 200 mg/tab (8 per day) www.Puritan.com
NSI Calcium Citrate 200 mg/tab (8 per day) www.Vitacost.com

Iron

Check with your surgeon to see if you need iron. Most pre-menopausal women will be required to take iron. You must take 90 mg of iron per day. If you have problems tolerating this, you can try a slow release formula such as Slow Fe. The following is a list of suggested iron products:

Vitamin Brand Amount per Tab Availability
Bariatric Advantage Iron 29 mg/tab (3 per day) BariatricAdvantage.com
FerroSequels (crushed) 50 mg/tab (2 per day) Any drugstore
Ferretts 106 mg/tab (1 per day) Any drugstore

Vitamin B12

You must take 500 mcg of vitamin B12 per day. You will take the sublingual form (put it under the tongue to dissolve) as the body will absorb it more easily. If the product you choose comes in 1000 mcg increments, take half of the vitamin every day.

Multivitamin

You must take two daily multivitamin supplements equivalent to Centrum.

Tips About Required Vitamins & Minerals

You will begin taking these vitamins and minerals when you start your pureed diet. To avoid nausea, do not take vitamins and minerals, especially iron, on an empty stomach. If the iron causes nausea or stomach upset, you can try a slow release formula such as Slow Fe. Do not take calcium and iron at the same time; take them at least 4 hours apart.
Do not take vitamins and minerals with tea, coffee, or cola.
It is recommended that you start using these supplements prior to surgery to help you get used to the schedule and build up your system.

See also Gastric Bypass Cold and Flu Survival.

For more information, call 484-628-LOSE (5673).