Intragastric balloon is a balloon made of silicone, which is endoscopically placed into the stomach. This balloon helps a patient lose approximately 15-20% of his/her body weigh over time. It is the easiest, reliable and non-surgical procedure among procedures performed in the struggle with obesity. Obesity paves the way for high blood pressure, heart failure, joint problems, vascular diseases, stroke and psychological problems rather than aesthetic problems. Therefore, the use of the intragastric balloon has become more common in the treatment of obesity. Intragastric balloon is preferred in super-obese patients with a BMI over 50, for making the surgical site more operable before bariatric surgery and enabling patients to lose 20 to 30 kg. Intragastric balloon treatment is performed by endoscopically placing an inflatable (with liquid of air) balloon into the stomach under anesthesia. The patient is anesthetized during the procedure. This is a simple and effective procedure that takes about 20 minutes. Before the procedure, the patient should have a fasting period of about 8 hours. Before the performance of the intragastric balloon procedure, the patient’s esophagus, stomach and duodenum are endoscopically examined to see whether there is any problem. If the results of the examination are considered to be normal, the process is continued. After this step after, first the deflated intragastric balloon is lubricated with gel and then is delivered into the stomach. The location of the balloon is endoscopically controlled. It is then inflated with 500-700 ml saline plus 10 ml methylene blue, and the process is ended. After the procedure, the patient is kept under medical observation for several hours and then is allowed to go home. With nutrition training, patients begin to eat less and lose weight quickly. After losing adequate weigh to an adequate extent, the balloon in the stomach is endoscopically deflated. After the completion of the treatment process, the intragastric balloon is removed with special endoscopic equipment.
What are the benefits of intragastric balloon?
The intragastric balloon procedure is a non-surgical procedure with a very low risk. It is possible to leave the hospital on the same day, immediately after the procedure. It is not a procedure that will leave a scar on your body. Weight gain after a surgical operation would be a problem because a second operation would be more difficult than the first one. However, such problem is not experienced in the intragastric balloon procedure. If you regain weight after the removal after the balloon, the procedure can be repeated. An intragastric balloon can be adjusted in accordance with the patient’s needs. When deemed necessary, it is possible to increase or decrease the volume of the balloon.
In which conditions the intragastric balloon procedure is not performed?
The intragastric balloon procedure should not be performed in people with psychiatric disorders, alcohol and drug addictions, active stomach and small intestine diseases or gastric ulcer, inflammatory intestinal diseases, intestinal cancer, hematological disorders, severe heart and kidney diseases, and those who use anti‐blood clotting drugs, high-dose anti-inflammatory drugs, and steroids. In addition, intragastric balloon is not used in patients under 18 years of age and over 65 years of age.
How much weight will I be able lose after an intragastric balloon?
An intragastric balloon can make it possible to lose approximately 20 to 25 kg over a period of 6 months.
The most important condition for losing weight with an intragastric balloon is to carry out the procedure definitely in conjunction with a support program. Placing an intragastric balloon will not alone lead to an adequate weight loss. You can achieve this success very easily. by gaining a proper dietary habit.
What will I experience after the placement of the intragastric balloon?
An intragastric balloon is used as a temporary treatment of obesity. It helps lose weight and prevent regaining the weight that has been lost. An intragastric balloon should be left in the stomach for a period not longer than 6 months. After removal of the balloon, the patient should adopt a diet and exercise program suitable for him/her. First of all, he/she should take important steps for a healthy life, by gaining proper dietary habits. If these are not ensured, weight gain may be experienced again.
Will I feel the intragastric balloon after its placement? Will it restrict my ability to eat?
You may experience mild discomforts for a few days after the placement of the intragastric balloon. However, the balloon will then become completely harmonious with your body. There will be no dietary restriction after the procedure? You will notice your inability to eat as much as you previously you did, because of effect of the balloon.