This page was last updated: December 3rd, 2021
You must firstly be referred to the Royal Cornwall Hospitals specialist weight management service by your GP. If they agree that surgery is a potential option for you, they can refer you to us.
You will have been discharged from our service. If you have any concerns, you can refer yourself back to us, or your GP can refer you via the referral management service.
We can see you in the bariatric surgery service. Your GP can refer you directly to us via the referral management service.
We can only see you if there is a medical emergency or if your GP has had agreement from the Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group to fund your ongoing care under the NHS.
These sessions take place every other Friday in the Cornwall Diabetes Education Centre (CDEC). They start at 2pm and last between one and one and a half hours.
You will be able to ask as many questions as you want to and be given an information leaflet about all the procedures we undertake. When you get home, please read it and jot down any questions you have.
Once you have attended the group education session you will then see the bariatric surgery multidisciplinary team which consists of a surgeon, dietitian, specialist nurse and anaesthetist.
Before your multidisciplinary clinic appointment, you’ll need to attend your GP surgery for an ECG. Please book an appointment in the week before your assessment.
Please bring your ECG and a list of your medications with you to your appointment, along with the list of questions from reading the information leaflet.
Your appointment will be at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro. You’ll see all the health professionals individually and attend a clinic where we’ll carry out some tests.
Once you have seen them and had all the tests performed you will be free to go home.
The team meets after the clinic to discuss each patient and plan the next actions.
Sometimes we may need to refer you for further medical tests to assess your suitability for an operation. These are safety checks to make sure you are medically fit for an operation, they’re not intended to be a barrier to surgery.
Occasionally a person’s diet has slipped and needs further dietetic support to ensure a good outcome after surgery.
Once you have been added to the waiting list, you may be waiting up to 18 weeks for your surgery, although this can be shorter.
When you are at the top of the list, our coordinator will contact you to arrange a convenient date for your surgery. She will also arrange a date for your pre-operative assessment. The coordinator will then send you out all the relevant information, including a copy of the consent form specific to your procedure and details of the liver reduction diet.
Two weeks before your surgery, one of our specialist nurses will call you on the phone to do your pre-operative assessment.
In order for the surgeon to do your operation safely, your liver will need to be lifted out of the way. If your liver is too heavy, it may cause bleeding and your operation to be abandoned.
To prevent this happening, we ask you to undertake a special liver reduction diet for two weeks to reduce the size of your liver. It is really important to follow the diet for the time specified so that your operation can go ahead as planned.
If you develop any sort of cough or cold or become unwell in the week before your operation it is important to let us know immediately so that your operation can be postponed until you are better.
You will be admitted to Theatre Direct at the Royal Cornwall Hospital where the ward staff will take care of you.
You’ll be seen by the surgeon to sign your consent form. (A copy of the consent form will have been posted to you in the admission pack so that you can read it before you come in for the operation). The surgeon will also answer any remaining questions. The anaesthetist will talk you through what happens in theatre and the specialist nurse will make sure you have all the information you need. Being in hospital can be a frightening experience, so if you need any information, advice or support, please ask for it.
During your time in hospital you will be looked after by the teams on either Theatre Direct, Pendennis Ward or the Critical Care Unit – All of whom are experienced in looking after patients undergoing weight loss surgery.
Gastric band surgery is undertaken as a day case procedure, meaning you can usually go home on the day of surgery. If you have a medical condition that necessitates a stay in hospital, you should be home the next day.
If you are having a Roux en Y Gastric Bypass or Sleeve Gastrectomy, you’ll need to stay overnight in hospital. Approximately 80% of patients go home the next day, and the rest need to stay an extra night.
The specialist nurses see you before you go home to ensure you have all the necessary information and supplies to help you recover at home. You will also be given contact details if you need any advice or support 24hrs a day.
Regular follow-up is as important as the procedure itself.
In your first week at home the specialist nurses will ring you twice to ensure you are recovering well and answer any questions you have.
After a gastric band insertion, we’ll follow up every four to six weeks for the first six months, and then every eight to twelve weeks, up to two years post-op.
After a Roux en Y Gastric Bypass or Sleeve Gastrectomy, we see you at six weeks, 3, 6, 12, 18 and 24 months, then yearly for life.
These follow-up clinics take place in Truro, Bodmin and Liskeard.
Further reviews can be arranged by contacting the Bariatric Coordinator on 01872 252790. The team supports you every step of the way to your new healthier life. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.
After each procedure there is a staged return-to-eating plan, which can be found in the Obesity and Metabolic Surgery patient information leaflet. Once you are back to eating normal solid, healthy food it is important to concentrate on foods that will give you the right nutrients.
Mr Ian Finlay, Consultant Bariatric and Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeon
Mr Jeremy Gilbert, Bariatric Nurse Specialist
Mrs Jackie Dingle, Bariatric and Upper Gastrointestinal Nurse
Miss Regan Crockett
Miss Leanne Elsey
Mrs Alison Buckingham
Mrs Tracy Mayes
Mr Tim Keen
Mrs Lisa Hogbin
Mrs Gail Salway
We run a monthly support group in the Outpatient Department at the Royal Cornwall Hospital. We also have a secret Facebook page for patients undergoing bariatric surgery. For details of how to join both, please contact the Bariatric Coordinator on 01872 252790.