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How Do I Know If I Have A Leak In My Gastric Sleeve?

Started by Estella, Nov 30, 2011 8:29 AM
20 replies to this topic
20 replies to this topic


    Senior Member

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 8:29 AM

Are there any signs?
I'm worried for 2 reasons.

1. The doctor didn't do a post-op leak test, the one with the really bad-tasting fluid you're required to swallow. He said I was seemingly okay and that it wasn't required.

2. I think I started eating dairy products too early. The booklet they gave me for nutrition post-op says I can eat liquid yogurt and dairy products after 5 days, but the dietician said 2 weeks of liquids only. I chose to believe the booklet (was hugry!) and ate white, non-fat yogurt, low fat (5%) cream cheese, low fat cottage cheese and liquid yogurt drinks.
Did I cause any harm? I have this vague pain on the insides where the biggest stitch is.

Please tell me I'm worried for nothing?
Should I go back to non-dairy liquids?



    Bariatric Guru

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 11:33 AM

Estella, I took my temperture a couple of times a day for the first month. If you have a leak, it will cause an infection and your temperture will increase. That is interesting that your surgeon did not do a leak test, I have never heard of that. I would like to hear from other sleevers if they did not have a leak test. Are you feeling ok, do you suspect a leak or just asking?

    Yukon Kara

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 11:53 AM

I had my surgery at Puget Sound Surgical Centre near Seattle and they do not perform leak tests. When I asked why, the surgeons there said that that test can sometimes cause a leak.

I started on watered down yogurt about four days after surgery. I would stick to the smooth dairy though instead of cottage cheese and cream cheese for a while yet though.

    CT Fats

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 12:26 PM

I don't its common to not perform a leak test. My doc did one while he was inside and then the swallow the next day. From what I understand you would probably know if you had a leak from high temp and pain in left shoulder, but of course everyone is different. There is a thread on here for leaks you can check out and you can always go to the doc and tell them you want that leak test. Remember doctors can be cocky but they work for you


    Senior Member

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 1:16 PM

My surgeons office has the 'center of excellence' status and the leak test is not something they require. We are in the hospital for 2 full nights & they don't discharge you until the afternoon of the second day. Based on how your recovery goes etc they may order one, but I never had one... I was grateful for that cuz from what I have heard they are gross.



    Bariatric Hero

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 1:26 PM

I was told that closer to the surgery my doctor would describe what a leak felt like, and my surgeon always puts in a drain at the time of surgery, and it stays in for 7-10 days. he encourages lightly tinted liquids so that if there is a leak you can see the liquids easily.

It is my understanding the test for leaks will be at my doctor OR my discretion, If either of us want it, he will do it, and it is in my inclusive cost to have one if necessary so yes, lol, I will probably make them do it.

Interesting about the post that it could actually cause a leak - it is much thicker than we are supposed to have post-op.



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Posted November 30, 2011 - 7:12 PM

Pookeyism, My drain was in for almost 48 hours couldn't wait to get it out ( painless).. the stuff they often give the day 2 AM for leak test does taste bad, and the wheelchair ride made me feel ill. The Xray was super quick, got back to the room and then threw it up. My only time actually getting sick, as opposed to feeling sick.


    Bariatric Master

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 7:21 PM

My surgeon is a surgeon of excellence and a bariatric patient himself. I was given a shake at the hospital on day 2, with milk. We are actually encouraged to drink milk twice a day and I am doing great. I haven't had cottage cheese, cream cheese etc, just full liquids, but milk is obviously not a problem.

    Lisa :)

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Posted November 30, 2011 - 7:47 PM

My surgeon told me that she would be performing a leak test during surgery and that I may, or may not have the barium swallow the following day. She said that when the sleeve was new, it was common practice to do both tests but it is becoming more common to not do it. I ended up having to do the barium swallow (which made me throw up) but I was told at my post op appt that my surgeon's group (there are 5 surgeons in the group) changed the protocol the week after my surgery and they are no longer performing the barium swallow on day two as long as all goes well during surgery.


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Posted November 30, 2011 - 7:50 PM

My only symptom was left shoulder pain. I probably had a temperature but was taking vicodin for the shoulder so never knew. I had never been told the shoulder pain was a symptom. My surgeon does not perform a leak test in the hospital. My leak didn't start until at least a month out and my surgeon says most likely the swelling kept it shut that long. Also, my first leak test didn't show a leak - I had it standing up. The second leak test I was feeling faint and had to do it lying down - and only then when I rolled to the side is the only time the leak showed - it took that pressure for it to show on that test. Let's just say I'm not impressed with that test!

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