Common Post-op Deficiencies – Thiamin


Vitamin B1, or thiamin, is one of eight B vitamins that help produce energy for the body by converting carbohydrates into fuel. Thiamin and the other B vitamins are needed for fat and protein metabolism; normal functioning of the brain and nervous system; and healthy skin, hair, eyes, and liver.

Bariatric surgery can increase the risk of thiamin deficiency especially in those who have preexisting thiamin deficits, low nutrient intake, had a malabsorptive bariatric procedure, or episodes of chronic nausea and vomiting. Symptoms of thiamin deficiency include headache, nausea, fatigue, irritability, depression, abdominal discomfort, swelling/tingling/burning sensation in hands and feet, confusion, trouble breathing, and uncontrolled eye movement.

Gummy vitamins do not contain the essential B vitamins thiamin and riboflavin and are therefore not recommended after surgery.

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