A Temporary Weight Loss Measure
Written by Bariatric Team
Sometimes the surgeon may suggest that you have a gastric balloon inserted as a temporary measure. This is often to help you lose weight prior to surgery to reduce your surgical risks or to provide an idea of the expected restrictions with other surgery.
This is a silicone balloon, which is fitted in the stomach via the mouth (endoscopically) as a day case. This is usually under light general anaesthetic or sedation.
As with the other bariatric procedures, you will be expected to follow a special postoperative diet whilst your body adapts to the balloon.
Unfortunately it is only a temporary measure and has a lifespan of 6 months. After 6 months, it will be removed.
What are the benefits and drawbacks of having a Gastric Balloon?
- You can expect to lose 20 - 30% of your excess body weight in 6 months
- If you lose weight it should reduce your medical and surgical risks, therefore making further surgery easier
- It gives you an impression of the lifestyle changes expected for all other bariatric surgery without undergoing the risks involved with these
- You are expected to return to a ‘normal’ healthy eating diet within a week of insertion
- The weight of the balloon and the presence of the balloon can cause the stomach to become irritated and as such cause nausea and vomiting
- Usually it takes a few days for nausea and vomiting to reduce
- It is only a temporary solution
- You will still need will power and to keep to healthy eating guidelines
- The balloon can rupture, however, it is filled with blue dye so if this happens your urine will turn a blue/green colour