July 2022

What is a gastric balloon procedure?

You may be interested in weight loss surgery and confused by the different options. The gastric balloon procedure is a very common weight loss procedure, but what this procedure entails may be confusing. Before you decide to get weight loss surgery it is important to look at the different options to choose from. 


How does a gastric balloon procedure work?


This weight loss procedure is when a saline-filled balloon is placed in your stomach. This limits your food consumption and makes you feel full quicker. After this procedure, you must be committed to living healthier and making permanent lifestyle changes. 


This procedure is very short, it will take place in about thirty minutes. You will be sedated and a catheter with the balloon will be placed from your throat to your stomach. A camera will be placed in the tube so the doctor can see what they are doing. The tube enters your stomach where the doctor will fill the balloon with saline. After the procedure, you will be kept for an hour and then you are free to go home. The balloon will be left in place for six months. After this, a new one will be replaced or it will be taken out entirely. [1]


gastric baloon

How will I lose weight from a gastric balloon procedure?


This procedure will cause you to lose weight quickly after the balloon is inserted. The balloon will cause you to feel less hungry and to feel full quickly. In the six months after your procedure, you will lose weight rapidly. Typically you will work with a nutritionist who will ensure you are eating healthy and eating a diet that you can continue for a long time. This procedure isn’t necessarily a quick fix, because the goal is to remove the balloon. After the balloon is removed the hope is that you will continue a healthier lifestyle. The purpose of this procedure is to begin your weight loss journey. The balloon will cause you to lose weight quickly initially, but then you will stagnate if you don’t make some lifestyle changes. This procedure is great because it is non-invasive and causes you to lose weight easily. It is important to remember that this procedure won’t be a permanent fix. [2]


What are the risks of a gastric balloon procedure?


With any procedure, there are some risks. A gastric balloon procedure is not invasive so luckily there aren’t too many severe risks to be concerned with. Immediately after the procedure, you may experience nausea, vomiting, and stomach cramping. After three to four days these side effects should subside. Some long-term risks include intolerance and rupture. Some patients who experience intolerance are not able to tolerate the side effects of the balloon. Nausea and other side effects are too extreme for them and they get their balloon removed. The risk of rupture is very small, but it is possible. Dye is in the balloon, so if the balloon ruptured you would notice as your urine would be green from the dye. The risks of a gastric balloon procedure are very small and unlikely. Most people who have had this procedure feel that the benefits vastly outweigh the risks. [3]



1 https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/intragastric-balloon/about/p...

2 https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/endoscopic-weight-loss-program/services/...

3 https://gastricballoongroup.com/gastric-balloon-risks/