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What vitamins should I take before major surgery?

Assorted pills and supplements in varying colors.

What vitamins should I take before major surgery?

July 02, 2013

Q: I am going in for major surgery (hysterectomy repair and abdominal hernia) soon. What vitamins can I take?

A:  You are supposed to stop all supplements, including vitamins and fish oil, at least two weeks prior to the surgery.

The reason is because some supplements will affect your ability to clot and may cause you to bleed more than expected. As well, it is difficult for the surgeon to predict who may bleed more than others (or clot more). The more you add to your regimen, the more confusing.

You are also not supposed to take any Motrin or Motrin-like products for the same duration.

You can ask your surgeon about which vitamins are best following the surgery, but in general, Centrum with iron will help for the blood loss in combination with a stool softener like Colace (because iron is constipating). The rest can be restarted two weeks after the surgery.

-- Answer from Dr. Cameron, a physician on JustAnswer.

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