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Dr. Andrew Rynne
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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Is flying safe before a planned gallbladder surgery?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Vivek Chail

Radiologist

Practicing since :2002

Answered : 6675 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 21 Jan 2016 in Medicines and Side Effects
Question: Hello. Flying 2-3 weeks before surgery under general anesthethic. Any imcreased risk
from anesthesia? It is gallbladder surgery, 5-hour flight.

I have read/heard that one should wait 5-6 weeks to take a plane AFTER surgery. But what about BEFORE? Any contra-indications?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Vivek Chail 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
No risk in flying before a surgery for the gall bladder

Detailed Answer:
Hi XXXX,
Thanks for writing in to us.

I have read through your query in detail.
Please find my observations below.

1. There is no risk in flying 2 to 3 weeks before a planned surgery for removal of the gall bladder.

2. Traveling can be done till the day before your surgery and there is no anesthesia contraindication.

3. Wishing you a safe travel and seasons greetings. Wish you quick recovery.

Hope your query is answered.
Please do write back if you have any doubts.

Regards,
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Vivek Chail 5 hours later
There is some conflicting information here, which apparently points to risk of flying before surgery with respect to DVT.

XXXX
XXXX

Please let me know your thoughts. Thank you.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Vivek Chail 5 hours later
Brief Answer:
DVT is an universal problem for all passengers

Detailed Answer:
Hi XXXX,
Thanks for writing back with an update.

1. The risk of DVT persists with every traveler talking a long flight, including myself. In my opinion this is a more general condition and not restricted to those who are going to undergo a surgery in the coming weeks.

2. Considering the study done at Mayo clinic, the subjects consisted of 10 people of Middle east origin and therefore there is some amount of selection bias in the research and I guess they traveled from UAE to US with flights making stopovers and therefore the time of travel is not clearly mentioned.

3. The precautions to be taken when flying a 5 hour flight are universal and therefore you should move your ankles and knees every 30 minutes and walk for a minute or two in the aisle every 2 hours when safety lights are turned off when flying.

4. Please avoid sitting at the airport lounge and waiting area before departure and after arrival at your destination.

5. Please keep yourself hydrated with water and juices through your journey. Avoid wearing clothes that can cut off venous return from your legs. DVT stockings are suggested for those who have a tendency to develop the problem.

Hope your query is answered.
Please do write back if you have any doubts.

Regards,
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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