For Women: Fertility and Pregnancy After Weight Loss Surgery


Is It OK to Become Pregnant After Weight Loss Surgery?
The first 18 months after weight loss surgery are a period of very rapid weight loss. From a hormonal and nutritional standpoint, you body acts as if it is in "starvation mode". If you become pregnant during the first 18 months after weight loss surgery, your fetus may not receive enough nutrition to develop normally. For this reason it is ESSENTIAL that you use RELIABLE CONTRACEPTION should you be sexually active during this time.and



What Happens to Menstrual Periods After Weight Loss Surgery?
Many women notice changes in their menstrual periods after weight loss surgery. Some women who are usually quite regular start having very irregular periods. Some women notice a substantial change in the heaviness of their flow. Some women may notice vaginal bleeding even if they have not had regular periods before surgery.

It is important to recognize that this type of variability in your period is common and normal after weight loss surgery. If you have questions about this, please do not hesitate to speak with your surgeon

FAQ

Q. Does weight loss surgery affect fertility?

A. Yes, it does. For many years, fat was thought to be nothing more than energy storage. It is now recognized that fat is actually a very hormonally active tissue, producing both female hormones (like estrogen) and male hormones (like testosterone). This is why some obese women have male hair patterns (like facial hair) and why some obese men have female attributes (like breast tissue).

As you lose weight, the hormonal effect of excess fat decreases. This may result in a substantial increase in your fertility. Although we would never describe bariatric surgery as a treatment for infertility, many women who were previously unable to become pregnant find that they become fertile after substantial weight loss.

This is one more reason why it is so important to use an effective form of birth control for the first 18 months after surgery!




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