Obesity Surgery

, Volume 22, Issue 8, pp 1232–1237 | Cite as

Body Image After Sleeve Gastrectomy: Reduced Dissatisfaction and Increased Dynamics

  • Martin TeufelEmail author
  • Nicole Rieber
  • Tobias Meile
  • Katrin Elisabeth Giel
  • Helene Sauer
  • Katharina Hünnemeyer
  • Paul Enck
  • Stephan Zipfel
Clinical Research



Individuals with severe obesity commonly report poor body image. Improvement in body image has been found after conservative weight reduction programs as well as after bariatric surgery (gastric bypass, biliopancreatic diversion, or gastric banding). However, no studies investigating body image after laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG) are available.


Of 70 consecutive patients who planned to undergo LSG at a comprehensive obesity center, 62 patients were included in the study and evaluated before surgery. Their mean body mass index (BMI) was 51.3 kg/m2 and the patients’ mean age before surgery was 43.8 years. One-year follow-up data were obtained for 51 patients (82.3 %). Body image was assessed using the body image questionnaire (BIQ-20), and depression was assessed using the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9).


Patients reported poor body image before surgery. One year after LSG, negative evaluations of the body and perceptions of body dynamics and vitality had markedly improved, without reaching healthy levels. No correlations between body image and weight-related parameters (BMI, percentage of excess weight loss) or mood after 1 year were found.


Body image improves after LSG. This improvement might reflect changes to patients’ attitudes, beliefs, and thoughts rather than real weight lost. Further studies should investigate the factors that mediate improvement of body image after bariatric surgery.


Obesity Bariatric surgery Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy Body image Body perception Weight loss Negative affect 



This work was supported by (1) the “Kompetenznetz Adipositas (Competence Network of Obesity)”, funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, Obesity, and the Gastrointestinal Tract (OGIT) Research Association (01GI0843), and (2) the Center for Nutritional Medicine, Tübingen & Hohenheim, Germany (ZEM 1AI). The authors would like to thank the patients and all collaborators (especially Zoe Rheinsberg and Angelika Kornblum) who made this study possible.

Conflict of Interest

All authors certify that there is no actual or potential conflict of interest in relation to this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Teufel
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nicole Rieber
    • 1
  • Tobias Meile
    • 2
  • Katrin Elisabeth Giel
    • 1
  • Helene Sauer
    • 1
  • Katharina Hünnemeyer
    • 3
  • Paul Enck
    • 1
  • Stephan Zipfel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Internal Medicine, Psychosomatic Medicine and PsychotherapyUniversity Hospital TübingenTübingenGermany
  2. 2.Department of General, Visceral and Transplant SurgeryUniversity Hospital TübingenTübingenGermany
  3. 3.Department of Internal Medicine and PsychosomaticsUniversity Hospital HeidelbergHeidelbergGermany

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