The Options for Weight Loss Surgery


Deciding that you need surgery in order to lose weight is a decision that can potentially change your life. There are a lot of options out there for you to choose from, however, so it is vital that you make proper considerations about what is and isn’t viable. Because obesity is such a big, global problem, many medical scientists and researchers are looking into better options to solve it. In recent years, they have moved away from the gastric bypass, although this is still offered, towards things such as the gastric balloon and even now the stomach pump.

Nobody thinks that gastric surgery, whatever type you choose, is an easy choice. Making the right decision is incredibly important, as it can make the difference between a success story and a failure. It is vital that you work together with your consultant to determine which procedure is going to be best for you. Let’s take a look at one popular option available today, which is the gastric balloon.

The Gastric Balloon

A gastric balloon is unique in as such that it is a temporary measure, rather than a permanent change. Additionally, the procedure is minimally invasive, being performed through an endoscopic procedure, through the throat. The option has been designed for two types of people:

1. Those who do not need to lose a tremendous amount of weight in order to be healthy, and just need some temporary help after which they can make the necessary lifestyle changes to maintain it.

2. Those who are so overweight or obese that they cannot go through the anesthetic of surgery and therefore need to lose some weight first.

In order to be accepted for a gastric balloon, a BMI has to be at least 28, although most people significantly exceed that. The balloon remains in place for six months, enabling people to lose enough weight to be able to go through other procedures, or to maintain their achievements. After six months, the balloon is simply removed again.

The procedure is reasonably straight forward and has almost no risks of complications. An endoscopy is passed into the stomach through the throat, enabling the surgeon to place a deflated balloon. This is then inflated through a thin catheter using a sterile saline solution. Once it is inflated, the catheter and the endoscopic tool are removed. The balloon stays in place for six months, and a second endoscopic procedure then deflates the balloon and removes it.

How a Gastric Balloon Can Change Your Life

During a six month period, your stomach will only be able to hold very small amounts of food. It is vital that you follow the diet plan that is given to you by your surgeon. If you do not stick to your diet plan, you are likely to suffer some very uncomfortable side effects, including nausea, vomiting, and acid reflux. Within six months, you can achieve a significant amount of weight loss, making you happier and healthier overall.