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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I Prepare for Surgery?

A few days before surgery, you may need to start a low fiber diet and start taking antibiotics to prepare the bowel. Your health care provider may tell you to only drink clear liquids the day before surgery.

What is a Bowel Prep ("Clean Out")?

"Bowel prep" refers to cleaning the bowel by drinking a special liquid. During this clean-out process, you'll have several loose stools. The bowel prep is finished when the stools are clear and watery. This process can help prevent infection during surgery.

When Can I Eat and Drink after Surgery?

For a few days after surgery you'll get fluids, "food," and medicines through an IV tube in your arm. Your health care providers will listen to your belly for "gurgle" sounds each day. You'll usually be ready to start eating soon after the lower belly starts making sounds again. You'll start with clear fluids, and will soon be able to eat regular food again.

When Will I Be Able to Return to School or Work?

Most patients are ready to return to their regular activities within a few weeks after leaving the hospital. However, each person is different, and recovery may take as long as three to four weeks.