Weight-loss results vary from person to person and is not guaranteed after surgery.
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Mr. Sanjay Agrawal
MBBS, MS, FRCSEd, FRCSGlasg, FRCS (Gen. Surg)
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Gastric Balloon

A gastric or intragastric balloon is an inflatable balloon, used as a temporary treatment to aid weight loss. It works by partially filling the stomach which creates a feeling of fullness, therefore helping persons to control portion size and change their eating behaviour leading to weight loss. This is a non-surgical procedure, which is usually performed under sedation and takes between 20-30 minutes.

On average, patients tend to lose up to 10-20% of their excess body weight with this procedure.
 

You need to know:

  • What are the risks?
  • Prices and Comparisons
  • How long does it take to get better from surgery?
  • Is the gastric band operation reversible?



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  • What are the risks?

    Gastric balloon placement is generally a very safe procedure. 

    However, in order for you to make an informed decision and give consent for the procedure, you need to be aware of the possible side-effects and the risk of complications of this procedure. 

    Side-effects: 

    These are the unwanted, but mostly temporary effects of treatment. 

    The first few days can be uncomfortable as the stomach gets used to the presence of the balloon. It is likely that you will experience nausea and vomiting, which can last for up to one week in severe cases. Anti-sickness medication can be prescribed to help alleviate your symptoms. 

    Complications:

    This is when problems occur during or after the procedure.

    Most people will not experience any serious complications from this procedure.

    Complications specific to a gastric balloon placement are listed here:

    Injury to the oesophagus or stomach – as with other gastric procedures, there is a risk of injury to the oesophagus or stomach. Perforation is a serious complication which could require emergency surgery and could be fatal especially in obese patients.

    Bacterial growth – should bacterial growth occur in the fluid filling the balloon, release of contaminated fluid into the intestine when the balloon is punctured for removal may cause infection, fever, cramps and diarrhoea.

    Intestinal obstruction – if the balloon leaks and deflates it may pass through the intestine and out of the body. However, it is possible for a deflated balloon to become lodged in the intestine and cause an obstruction. This is a serious complication possibly requiring surgical removal of the balloon.

    The exact risks are specific to you and will differ for every person. Overall, there is a 0.5% (1in 200) risk of adverse effects (as listed above) and < 1 in 2,000 (0.05%) risk of death caused by having this procedure.

  • Prices and Comparisons

    Mr. Agrawal is frequently asked about the differences between the common laparoscopic bariatric/weight-loss operations, so in this section you will find a comparison to help you make decisions for your treatment. Please Click here to read more...

  • How long does it take to get better from surgery?

    Provided you are well enough, you may be able to go home the same day of your gastric balloon placement. Otherwise, you will be required to stay overnight in hospital. Full recovery from a gastric balloon can take up to one week.

  • Is the gastric balloon operation reversible?

    The gastric balloon is reversible and can only be left in place for a maximum of six months. Over time the acidic content of the stomach will naturally weaken the balloon material causing it to deflate, which is why balloons can only be left in place for six months.

  • Further Information

    Association for the Study of Obesity (ASO)
    020 8503 2042
    www.aso.org.uk 

    British Obesity Surgery Patients Association (BOSPA)
    0845 602 0446
    www.bospa.org


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Please complete the form below and we will contact you shortly

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The contents this site is for information only, and is not meant to substitute the advice of your own physician or other medical professional.
Weight-loss results vary from person to person and is not guaranteed after surgery.