Intragastric ballooning is better than surgery for those who are excessively overweight
New Delhi, Jan 20: As surgery can be some times dangerous for weight reduction, intragastric ballooning is a better option, especially for those excessively overweight, doctors said on Friday.
According to doctors here, if the awareness about intragastric balloons — also known as silicon balloons — rises, it can be a solution for the rising cases of overweight and obesity for women, instead of surgery.
“Intragastric balloon is a tool to aid weight loss and is most effective when combined with a comprehensive lifestyle programme and following the diet control prescribed. In general, ballooning helps to lose 15-20 per cent total body weight loss (TBWL),” said Ashish Bhanot, chief bariatric surgeon, Apollo Spectra Hospital here.
Bhanot said the other reason why women prefer silicon balloon implants over bariatric surgery is because it is non-invasive.
Explaining the silicon balloon procedure, he said: “Gastric balloon is designed to partially fill one’s stomach, giving a feeling of fullness. The balloon is implanted in the stomach using an endoscope. Then, it is inflated.”
According to experts, the gastric balloon is placed in the stomach for 6-12 months and a monthly visit is necessary for the first six months and then bi-monthly thereafter.
“Over 90 per cent of the weight loss occurs in the first three months and the next three represent weight maintaining period. It is very important to follow the diet chart for the first 10 days as the symptoms may not make you comfortable,” said Abhay Singh, a Delhi-based gastroenterologist.
“Cramping is quite common with acid refluxes and even vomiting and hence restricted to a liquid diet,” he added.
“The procedure for removal is also the same. The doctor will insert a catheter from the mouth oesophagus till attaching it to the balloon. The balloon is then deflated, grasped and removed through the mouth,” said Singh.