Morning sickness syndrome after weight loss surgery

Question Below Submitted By:  

Olga M (a patient from Amarillo, TX)

The doctor said that morning sickness syndrome after weight loss surgery was very rare, but I have been in the hospital twice with it and am still suffering from the nausea and vomiting.

I have no appetite whatsoever and haven’t had since the surgery. I am still unable to drink enough water or protein to feel better and am nowhere near getting enough food to sustain me.

I have lost over 80 pounds since October 4, 2011. I feel so disappointed as the doctors can find no reason for me going through this. They gave me the above name for this, but I can’t find any research for it.

I am further disappointed as the doctor who did the surgery is in another city but has an office here, but just literally would not do anything except tell me to go back to Dallas to his hospital so they could handle it. I was in no condition to drive six hours to get to a hospital that wasn’t accepted by my insurance.

I was able to find a doctor here that has helped and am very grateful to him.

I feel so disappointed as the surgery that I thought would allow me the energy to feel better has made me so sick instead.


Patient Responses to the Question Above

Morning Sickness (Nausea)

by: Traci Baker (Bariatric Life Coach)

I’m going on 5 years out from gastric bypass and in the beginning I found that certain vitamins I took would make me nauseous along with certain types of proteins. Have you talked to your dietitian about alternative types of proteins and what types of vitamins you take along with the time of day you take them? Have you asked for nausea medicine to help you? I couldn’t get my protein in from solid foods for a long time after surgery and many liquids made me sick to my stomach. After trying various types of protein drinks I finally ended up going back to ISOPURE which is what I was given in the hospital. You either really like it or hate it but for me it’s the one that I could sip on all day long that didn’t make me feel worse. Each bottle had 40 grams of protein and I focused on getting in 2 a day. I always filled my glass with ice and let it sit for a few before I would drink it and each day I would drink a little more. I’ve also experienced dehydration which always made me feel 10x more nauseous which required trips to the ER for IV fluids. If you aren’t getting enough liquid you can become dehydrated and sometimes the only way to get that is from an IV. It can become a viscous cycle when you are nauseous you don’t want to eat or drink which can cause dehydration which can cause nausea. I didn’t feel good for a long time after surgery and my advice is take it minute by minute, hour by hour and day by day. Continue to listen to your body and reach out when you need to.I hope this helps.

Related Pages:
- Bariatric Diet
- Bariatric Surgery Complications
- Gastric Bypass Side Effects

3rd response

by: Yvonne McCarthy (BariatricGirl)

From third doc. These guys are in the top of their field. I would like you to email me. I am in Dallas and perhaps can find some help for you. I sent the owner of the site a message to give you my email address. Here's the 3rd response. "Never heard of this - sounds like an odd explanation from the doc."

another answer

by: Yvonne McCarthy (BariatricGirl)

Here's the second opinion I got. "Hey Yvonne. That syndrome doesn't exist. I think she is lacking nutrients/food. No wonder she feels this way." I hope to hear from doc #3 very soon. Is this helping you at all?

Hugs, Y

First response

by: Yvonne McCarthy (BariatricGirl)

Here's the first response I've gotten back in answer to your post from a bariatric doc. "Not really a syndrome but people who had morning sickness are more likely to get nauseated after gastric bypass. This usually passes. Often it is from the ketosis of early weight loss and would get better if she ate. BUT this would have to be worked up completely." I hope this helps a little. Were you pregnant before and did you have bad morning sickness? I'll let you know as soon as I hear from the others.

Hugs, Y

Morning sickness syndrome

by: Yvonne McCarthy (BariatricGirl)

What kind of surgery did you have? I'm almost 11 years out and never heard of this. If you had gastric bypass and you are throwing up a lot you could have a stricture. Again I AM NOT A DOC. I'm going to email three of the best bariatric docs in Texas and I will ask them all if they have ever heard of this. How far are you from San Antonio? I am worried about you so I'll let you know what I find.

Hugs, Yvonne

I am dealing with this now, any advice??

by: Thea

I am experiencing this "morning sickness," my doctor has not been able to identify the cause. I know this is an old post, but if you by chance read this, advice is appreciated.

Gastric Sleeve has done the same to me

by: Amanda


I had the Gastric sleeve 2 weeks ago and I have constant nausea like morning sickness 24/7 too. Did time help you overcome this?

I have no energy either and eating is a chore. Trying to keep up with fluids to help stay hydrated. Not sure what else to do. GP appointment is Thursday. I am in Australia.

Morning sickness - that's me

by: Sarah

I suffered severe morning sickness when I was pregnant and now its happening all over again after my gastric bypass. I am in hell and nobody can help me with this.

Please, can someone assure me this will pass? I don't know how much longer I can do this.

10 1/2 months post op and I have this problem as well. No one has been able to help so far.

by: Kanacteeol

Like the title says, I have been having the same thing. Nausea and vomiting really bad in the morning. I find that if i don't keep food in my stomach i'll keep having this problem.

Any one of you who also have this problem could have too small of a sleeve. If you've had an endoscopy, your surgeon should be able to tell you if he made it too small or not. He's not going to admit it because it's inexperienced surgeons mistake, he'll say something like he'll need to redo the surgery or a different type because the position or your stomach is wrong due to fake excuse.

What really happened is he made your stomach too small and acid is eating your tiny stomach away or a million other things that can go wrong with a too tiny stomach. Like I said, an endoscopy(which the original poster) sounded like they had, should be able to tell if you have that problem and it's performed by another doctor that's not trying to save his ass. (Also you may not need surgery, you may just need to have your stomach stretched out which can be down with endoscopy or just by time through eating. But if it's too small then they gotta do surgery again.

Anyways, if you've had an endoscopy and that's not the problem my best guess is that if you are all having the same complication as I am and thats the morning sickness syndrome, then I think the culprit is acid. Before you say it's not acid reflux, let me agree and continue.

I don't feel acid in my throat either. I feel pain and nausea in my stomach worst in the mornings and on an empty stomach. Acid in the stomach, can mix with salvia and produce bubbles. For some reason the bubbles don't escape or can't and expand and expand causing more nausea and pain until you throw up. I tried using anti gas simethicone and it can help to reduce the bubbles but it can only help after the symptoms start to present and not before. So it's not a solution, just a bandaid.

If anyone has found a solution to this yet or has any other ideas, that would help me a lot since I am starting to look at permanent disability at this rate.

*morning sickness

by: Rose

I know this post is old but I just had gastric bypass surgery a few weeks ago and I'm going through this same thing. I haven't been able to really eat anything and the smell of food makes me sick too.

Every time I try to take my medicine it makes me throw up. I get awful stomach pains. It even feels like pills get stuck going down. I knew there was going to be some struggles with this surgery but this is not what I expected.

Re: rose and soltuion to morning sickness syndrome at the bottom.

by: Kanacteeol

The first couple of weeks after surgery are the worst. You should have been given a diet guide which will tell you what foods you can eat and when you can. When you have trouble, go back to the first steps for the first couple of days after surgery which are things like water and very diluted juice (stay away from the more acidic juices) sugar free pudding. You should only be able to fit about 100ccs in your stomach after surgery. About the size of an egg.

If you put more in you'll feel sick and or vomit. Also if you had a route and Y gastric bypass, your diet restrictions are more then a lapband or gastric sleeve. If you don't follow the diet plans or eat something your not supposed to with the former surgery, it could get stuck in that intestine part that connects your 2 stomachs and then you'll be in real trouble and have to go into emergency. Remember, complainers die after the silent types. Tell your surgeon or whoever is responsible for your recovery, everything. Keep complaining to keep alive.

The mornings can be tough the first couple weeks after surgery as well because depending on how much you slept, pain and nausea medications may have worn off during the night. Also your position can make a difference sit with a pillow under you and prop yourself into almost a sitting position if you can. Don't force yourself with anything. I am not sure of many things in your situation so the advice I can give is limited. If you had gastric reflux before surgery it may be worst afterwards so your PPI dosage may need to be increase.

I take 40mgs twice daily and yes that is double max dose of Omeprazole. If you can tolerate it and if the pill can, crush the pill and try and put it in some pudding and take it down like that. Please check with your doc before you do that because some medications cannot be crushed and it could harm you if you do it or they won't work. Also depending on your insurance you might be able to try liquid medications. I'm not sure if your nausea is bad but if you are still super nauseous and or throwing up, that NEEDS to be under control.

Throwing up is bad especially so soon after surgery. You might not be in danger but if it keeps happening you could. Also you could stretch your stomach out vomiting, which may lead to less over all weight loss. If you've tried every nausea pill and nothing works, your next step is medicinal marijuana. Smoking anything is gonna upset your stomach most likely. Smoking in normal people and stimulate gastric juices and burn your tiny stomach. Eating or sublingual route or suppository may be another option. (On the subject of suppository and sublingual route medications, if your insurance covers your medicine in a suppository and you have someone at home to help you do it, this could be a solution to your current oral medication.

Some medications can burn the stomach of a normal person; I know it's not ideal, but it's better than throwing up, it's better than pain, it's better than nausea.) If you're having a lot of trouble taking your medications by swallowing them this may be a solution to your problem. Anyways back on the subject of using marijuana as a nausea medication, it is very effective at control nausea and getting people to eat. This is why cancer patients take it. There is a lot of sigma around marijuana, but a quick Google search reveals that this is because of ignorance and lack of good research that has been done on marijuana in comparison to other drugs.

It comes down to this, if you really need it and nothing else works, I personally think that using marijuana is better then frequent trips to the hospital or having to have to go through this extremely painful(one of the more painful) surgery again; All because too much vomiting stretched my stomach and cause problems or stop loosing weight altogether. No one wants that to happen to anyone.

Again please check with your doctor before changing or starting any new meds. As far as talking to a doctor about Marijuana, your primary care physician and surgeon will not know enough about Marijuana to help you and will both most likely say to stay away from it because they can't recommend something they know nothing about. Set up a visit with a doctor which specializes in the use of medicinal marijuana. You have to see one anyways in order to get a medicinal marijuana license.

I hope some of this helped and sorry about all the grammar and probably wrong word use and all of that. I wrote this on my phone and my auto-correct is horrible when it comes to long paragraphs.

To anyone who wants the solution to "morning sickness syndrome" I think I have it:

If you are having this problem and it's been a couple months after your surgery, then maybe you have my problem. I wrote the post above with the title 10 and a half months post op.. something like that search kanacteeol and you'll find it. Anyways, my problem was that my surgeon made my stomach too small and not too small where there was a life threatening problem.

This caused my recovery time to be extended just because of that. But the reason why I was still throwing up 10 months after surgery and why my pain and nausea was really bad in the morning was because of bubbles. During the night my mucus and saliva would get into my stomach. When mucus and saliva mixes with stomach acid it creates bubbles or gas. But mucus especially thick mucus, will create has that can't leave your stomach by burping or by digestion. So it builds and creates pressure and pain and nausea until you dilute that mucus with something or get rid of the gas. You wake up and through the course of the day, you stabilize your stomach and get rid or replace the bubbles until nighttime where they build again.

The solution is simethicone to break up the bubble membrane so you can burp them out, something like pepcid to start working on the stomach acid asap. A ppi like omeprazole (Prilosec) won't work for immediate relief (it reduces acid overall, you should still be on it). Lastly Pepto-Bismol to coat your stomach, mix with the acid to dilute it and help with nausea overall.

Also probiotic yogurt and pills may or may not help. I take both a once a day pill and 1 probiotic yogurt once a day as well. Once you start burping, you should get relief a bit after you take those medications when you first get up. You can also keep these medication close to you while you sleep in case you wake in the middle of the night and can't get back to sleep. By the way, if I am awake for more then a couple of mins in the middle of the night, I have to get up and take these medications. I am not sure why but if I sit up and take them and wait for about 5 mins sometimes a bit longer, the pain and nausea subside and I can go back to sleep.

I hope this helps.


by: Christina Figueroa

I'm 3 weeks out of sleeve surgery I feel like I can't hold anything down.

Today I'm home just to hydrate myself and I feel like crap. My body is weak and I feel frustrated.

nausea and dizziness

by: caroline

Gosh i thought i was on my own with all this . I'm now 3 years post op sleeve and I have had nausea and dizziness pretty much on a daily basis since I started to eat solid foods after the op. If i go back on to a liquid diet all my symptoms go . when i eat solids i can get immense nausea and dizziness , we have tried every test going i've tried every type of way top eat and not to eat food.

My logic is its protein related and I now think my body can't process protein properly. When i get these bouts of nausea dizziness, I also get fatigue and have to go and lay down and i usually fall asleep. This can happen once or even twice a day. I have complained numerous times to my surgeon, his response is " well i've never heard of this , so i can't help you." I can spend weeks at a time in bed , and then all of a sudden, it will go away for a while then come back.

Each day is a lottery and each day my family wait in anticipation to see if i'm going to be able to get up go out and go to work. It's debilitating and quite frankly I wished I never had it done.

Baking soda

by: Answerman

Teaspoon of baking soda and cup of warm water cures nausea instantly.

Constant nausea

by: Rachel

I am only 1 week post op but I’m struggling to even keep water down. I knew the ride would not b easy but I just want to feel well. 😞

Morning Sickness Syndrome after VGS

by: Storm

I had VGS surgery several years ago and almost lost my life due to the nausea and heightened sense of smell. I spent three months in the hospital due to dehydration and malnutrition. I didn’t eat one solid thing for seven long months, unless it was by tube feeding at home or IV in hospital, because the sensitivity to smell would make me vomit. Toothpaste, shampoo, food in the fridge, my dog’s breath in another room... on and on. My vomit turned to foam at one point because I had nothing to expel. I couldn’t take pills without vomiting. I was slowly dying.

Had many tests, many specialists and not one had any experience with this. When I told my doctor that I felt like I had morning sickness 24-7, his reply was, “Morning sickness comes only in the morning, that’s why it’s called morning sickness.” (He’s clearly never been pregnant). The only thing keeping me alive was remaining in the hospital. If I went home, I quickly deteriorated. I could not even lift my head. Round the clock care. My family could find nothing online of anyone having this experience. My doctor threw his hands up and told me to see a psychologist.

It took seven months in agony until I began to feel better, continuing to tube feed at home. My tube fell out one evening, and although I had severe muscle loss, I was coming back to life.

Although I have seen great results for some, I was one of the few who failed. I could never recommend WLS to anyone. In the end, even after all the starvation, I lost only 60lbs. My hopes had been much higher. I became depressed and ate myself to a whopping additional 100lbs. No feelings of restriction or fullness. My muscles weak no matter the exercise. The toll it took on family. The expense.

I blame only myself for not continuing to follow the lifestyle change, but not having any follow-up or instructor (since I was in the hospital during scheduled meetings and appointments) I should have fought harder. The psychologist would have been a good place to turn to, as the doctor ordered.

I continue to pay off hospital bills today. Two more years of barely scraping by. I’m just thankful to be alive, and still have a job.

One thing that I did get pleasure from during my ordeal. The only liquid I could get down well enough was PICKLE JUICE! Went through large jars of it. Bought it online with only the juice. How’s that for morning sickness.

Help after sleeve

by: Nicole

10 days post sleeve. I feel horrible always nauseous and lots of spitting. I have been to the ER already for dehydration. I'm constantly vomiting clear liquid.

What am I doing wrong?


by: Stace

I just had my sleeve 2 weeks ago 6/5/2018 I had this problem of being sick all the time after surgery. My Dr. gave me 2 kinds of nausea medicine and you started rotating then every 4 hours and that seemed to help me.

Plus, I found out that when I started taking vitamins I was taking to much at one time so now I space them all out. So far that has helped but today is day 2 of doing it.

Morning Sickness that lasts 24 hours

by: Mark

After reading through everyone's responses I wanted to share my experience. I had the sleeve done 3 months ago and it has been a nightmare ever since. After 1 week post op it quickly became clear someone wasn't right. I was unable to keep down any liquids or food, including medicine.

Here I am three months later and it hasn't gotten much better. I have been to the ER multiple times for multiple issues including dehydration, development of blood clot and kidney stones. I've also been through 6 surgeries with the 7th scheduled for later in August.

It's clear the surgeon has no idea what is wrong. The very first issue he found was my stomach had slightly rolled causing the esophagus to no longer completely line up with the stomach and backing up anything that I ingested. After surgery to fix the success was negligible, nausea and vomiting continued (side note but could never get a straight answer as to why my stomach would have rolled, any ideas would be appreciated)

I currently have a PICC line installed in my chest where I give myself saline bags daily so I stay hydrated and receive my nutrients. I understand where others are coming from when you talk about depression. I have reached the point where this is no longer about weight loss, it has now just become a quest for survival.

I thought I was alone...

by: Becky

I am almost in tears reading all of your stories. I too have had 24 hr a day nausea, vomiting and pain since my RNY on July 2, 2018. After multiple trips to the ER for hydration, I was readmitted by my surgeon to the hospital in San Antonio (4 hours from where I lived) for 5 days where I had an endoscopy showing only mild gastritis and then had my gallbladder removed.

Removing the gallbladder took care of the pain, but did not do anything for the rest of me. I was ordered to go home from the hospital with a PIC line and IV TPN nutrition, but we were about to move out of state and the logistics could not be worked out to continue care in Colorado. Last week after arriving in CO, my arm began to hurt terribly and I again went to the ER only to find I had 2 large DVT's (blood clots) in my arm that I likely got from the PIC line.

Now, my daughter and I are in Colorado and I am once again becoming severely dehydrated and I cannot effectively raise her as a single mom if I am this sick all the time. AND you would think that being this sick and not eating for days at a time would have made me lose even more weight. Unfortunately, the years of yo-yo dieting and my middle age hormones have got the best of me and I am only down 18 pounds in 7 weeks.

Honestly, it is no longer about the weight loss and is all about survival. I feel like I am fighting for my life and I fear that this will be the way it is forever.

PS.. I also had HORRIBLE 24 hr a day "morning sickness" throughout my pregnancy. Could it be related?

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