Gastric balloon

The Gastric Balloon is the non-surgical weight loss alternative for people who want an intense period of weight loss and who understand that they must keep to a sensible eating programme after their balloon is removed.

The balloon is designed to induce weight loss by partially filling your stomach so that you get less hungry, feel fuller quicker, and importantly alter your personal relationship with food.

Is gastric balloon suitable for everyone?

No. If you have a particular condition, for example an illness related to your heart or lungs, your GP and surgeon may feel the procedure is too risky to carry out.

What’s involved?

You will be given a throat spray that has a numbing effect (you will also be offered a sedative if you wish). Using endoscopic technique a small thin tube is inserted through your mouth down your throat and gullet and a silicone balllon is inserted and filled with saline in your stomach.

This limits the amount of food your stomach can hold. Your food still passes through your digestive system in the normal way.

Gastric balloon installation

The gastric balloon is introduced into the stomach through the mouth. Your surgeon will perform an initial examination of your stomach using an endoscopic camera. If no abnormalities are observed, your surgeon will proceed with placement of the balloon through your mouth and down your oesophagus into your stomach. The balloon is made of a soft and pliable silicone elastomer material and is inserted while in its smallest, deflated form. The swallowing process is made easier with the help of a throat spray which numbs the throat area. Muscle relaxing medications are also used.

Once the balloon is inside your stomach, it is immediately filled with sterile saline through a small filling tube (catheter) attached to the balloon. Once filled, your surgeon will remove the catheter by gently pulling on the external end. The balloon has a self-sealing valve, and at this point the balloon is floating freely in your stomach. Placement times vary, but it will usually take 20-30 minutes, after which you will be monitored by the weight loss surgeon for a short time and then may return home.

Am I a candidate for gastric balloon?

You could be if

You are at least 30% above their ideal weight

•You are 18 years of age or older.

•You have tried all other conventional methods of weight loss, such as exercise and diet, but have failed to lose any significant amount of weight.

•You don’t have any medical or psychological reasons for not carrying out the procedure.

•You understand that after the gastric balloon has been removed you have to continue to reduce your food intake and maintain a regular exercise regime.

What are the benefits of a gastric balloon compared to other bariatric surgeries?

•Fully reversible: stomach returns to normal when gastric balloon is removed.

•No cutting or stapling of the stomach

•No overnight stay in hospital and can usually go home an hour after.

•No recovery involved. Although it may take some time to adjust you should be able to resume normal life right away.

•No malabsorption issues (because no intestines are bypassed)

•Fewer threatening complications

Are there any complications?

After the ballon has been fitted considerable adjustments to your eating habits including smaller portions is something you have to get used to. This is something which patients can find difficult, and weight loss may be less than expected.

What about gastric balloon and pregnancy?

If considering pregnancy, ideally you should be in optimum nutritional condition prior to conception; deflation of the balloon and removal may be required prior to planned conception. Deflation and removal should also be considered should morning sickness be present.

Effectiveness

As well as experiencing significant weight loss after gastric balloon, most patients also find an improvement in their emotional health and quality of sleep.

 

How long Is the gastric balloon left in place?

The balloon may remain in place for 6 to 9 months. Over time the acidic content of the stomach will weaken the balloon material and cause the balloon to deflate so longer periods of use are not recommended. Should your surgeon recommend use of the balloon for longer than 6/9 months, it is necessary that the balloon be replaced with a new one when the 6/9-month interval has been met. While the balloon is in place, your gp may prescribe a course of oral medication to reduce your stomach acid, (this may reduce the possibility of stomach irritation and damage to the balloon).

 

Gastric balloon removal

The balloon is normally removed in the same way it was placed, via the mouth. As with the placement of the balloon your surgeon will introduce a catheter through your mouth and into your stomach. They will then puncture and deflate the balloon. Once the balloon is deflated it can be grasped and removed.

 - 4 taxi trips between airport, hotel and hospital.

 - 1 nights stay in the B&B hotel  near the hospital for 2 people.

    This means  you stay 1 night after the operation in the hotel.

  - Your personal coach visits you the first evening in the hotel to explain

     the schedule, answer your questions, handle finances and you ‘ll receive his

     visitcard in order to reach him 24/7 if  you have problems or questions.

 -  Consultation with your surgeon in hospital during the morning                                     

    before the procedure.

 - Visit from your personal coach to give advice and diets

consultation

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