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Struggling to Lose Weight? This New Nonsurgical Procedure Could Help

This nonsurgical weight loss system might help you achieve goals that have proved elusive in the past.

If you have a Body Mass Index (BMI) between 30 and 40 and have struggled to lose weight in the past, the ORBERA weight loss system could help you achieve your goals.

What Is It?

Approved by the FDA in mid 2015, the ORBERA system depends upon an outpatient procedure in which a gastric balloon is inserted into the stomach. This endoscopic procedure uses a tube with a camera and light to place the balloon in the stomach, foregoing incisions or other more invasive techniques.

The balloon is then inflated with the appropriate amount of saline. Once filled, the balloon sits in the stomach to help encourage feelings of fullness while the patient works through a diet and exercise program with their healthcare provider.

Because the balloon takes up space in the stomach, the patient can reduce their portions and eat more slowly without feeling hungry. After six months, the balloon is removed through another endoscopic procedure but the patient continues to work with their healthcare provider to maintain their healthy food choices, portion control and exercise regime.

Who Is It For?

Those with a BMI between 30 and 40 are eligible for the ORBERA system: generally those described as “obese” or “severely obese.” Those with a BMI greater than 40 are considered morbidly obese and are not eligible. Because of the nature of the gastric balloon, the system is also not appropriate for those with structural abnormalities in the esophagus, sizable Hiatal hernias, gastric masses and a series of other conditions that affect the GI system. You can learn more about these exceptions here, but consulting with a gastroenterologist is the only way to know for sure if the ORBERA system is right for you.

What Can I Expect?

In a year-long clinical study, 255 patients participated in a behavior-modification program created to encourage weight loss. 125 patients received the ORBERA device and 130 didn’t. Patients with the device lost an average of 21.8 pounds after the device had been installed for six months and at the nine-month mark maintained an average weight loss of 19.4 pounds. The patients who didn’t have the device lost an average of 7 pounds.

This study informs ORBERA’s claim that the system will help patients lose 3 times more weight than diet and exercise alone. Results vary by patient, however, and eligible patients must be willing to follow a 12-month program designed to maximize weight loss and keep weight off after balloon removal.

The ORBERA system isn’t for everyone, but it’s effectiveness and nonsurgical nature make it worth consideration for those who have struggled with weight loss and meet the requirements. The gastroenterologists at The Endoscopy Center can help you learn more about the ORBERA system and other treatments that help with weight loss. For more information, visit http://www.endo-world.com or call (850)-474-8988.