Common Weight Loss Surgery Terms

There is a lot to consider pre and post weight loss surgery and without the right support it can be a daunting journey. Not only do you have to learn how to work with your procedure but also to get to grips with all the terms used.

That is why we have complied the below glossary with a mixture of terms patients use and a few medical terms.

Bariatric surgery – Also known as weight loss surgery. This type of surgery is performed as a treatment of obesity by facilitating weight loss.

Body Mass Index (BMI)– A number that’s calculated based on an individual’s height and weight. A BMI between 18 and 25 is considered normal. A BMI over 25 suggests that the individual is overweight, while 30-39 represents obesity. A BMI of 40+ suggests severe obesity.

Bypasser– someone who has had a gastric bypass procedure.

Bandster– someone who has had a gastric band fitted.

Comorbidities – Medical illnesses and or diseases that are either negatively impacted or caused by obesity. Examples of these are diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, and arthritis.

Dumping Syndrome– Dumping syndrome, is a combination of symptoms that can occur when an overly large meal, or a meal high in fat or sugar is consumed by a Bypasser or Sleevie .The meal is “dumped” into the small intestine when the stomach empties quickly, causing feelings of nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach gas, racing heart, cramps and cold sweats.

Excess Weight Loss (EWL)– This is measured as a percentage of the total weight you need to lose to reach a normal BMI. It is calculated by dividing the amount of weight lost to date by the total amount of weight that needs to be lost to give a normal BMI, multiplied by 100.

Ectoplasm – A thick froth that happens when a weight loss surgery patient has eaten too fast and the food gets stuck.

Head Hunger – when there is no possibility that you are actually hungry but you still want to eat.

Laparoscopy– A minimally invasive surgical procedure in which the surgeon gains access to the abdominal cavity by way of 4 to 6 small incisions in the abdominal wall. An instrument called a laparoscope is used to give the surgeon an exceptionally clear view of the inside of the abdominal cavity. This surgical approach is considered “minimally invasive” because of the very small incisions used.

Loser’s bench – used in weight loss surgery support groups as a way to welcome a newbie to the weight loss surgery community.

Liver Reducing Diet (LRD)– A few weeks before your surgery you will be asked to follow a special pre-operative diet known as the Milk Diet; there is a non-milk alternative for patients who don’t like milk. The weight loss from this diet will reduce the size of your liver, giving the surgeon a better view to complete your surgery safely.

Newbies– New people who have had weight loss surgery

Non Scale Victories (NSV)– the additional achievements that weight loss patients experience thanks to their procedure that are not seen on the weighing scales.

Old Timers– a term referring to those who are a number of years past their weight loss surgery.

Optimal zone (sweet spot)– refers to Bandsters who reached a point in their band adjustments, where they are steadily losing weight and able to maintaining.

Restriction– Restriction is a feature of all the weight loss surgery procedures. The amount of food that can be eaten with comfort by the patient is greatly reduced.

Sleevie– Someone who has had a gastric sleeve procedure.

If you found this glossary of use visit our FAQ section where our surgeons have answered so of the most commonly asked questions.