Understanding the Gastric Balloon Procedure and Gastric Balloon Procedure Costs

What Is The Gastric Balloon Procedure?
The gastric balloon procedure (endoscopic instragastric balloon) is the process of placing a special medical inflatable balloon (or more) inside one's stomach temporarily, in order to reduce weight. This procedure is a great choice for select individuals who have struggled to lose weight in the past, but would prefer not to undergo weight loss surgery. While patients have this inflated silicon balloon in their stomach it reduces the amount of room in which food can fit. This allows one to feel full sooner and therefore should eat less. Naturally, if the size of your meals reduce significantly, this will help you to lose weight. As a general rule, people who undergo this procedure tend to lose a significant percentage their excess body fat within six months.

As with all weight loss solutions, the gastric balloon procedure does require some commitment from you if you expect to see lasting results. For example, you will need to follow the advice of your doctor as far as a diet is concerned. If you are going to insist on snacking from morning to night, you will not lose as much weight as you actually could, and you could even find yourself putting on weight, although this very rarely happens. We will discuss diet in greater detail a bit further down on this page, but first, let us take a look at the actual procedure itself.

In the not too distant past, you would have struggled to find someone who had been for the gastric balloon procedure. This procedure was generally reserved only for those people who were deemed to be seriously obese, to the point where their obesity had become a very serious health risk, as a bridge of sorts to reduce weight to make the patient more suitable for a more drastic procedure. These days, however, gastric balloon surgery is far more common, and naturally, there are a number of reasons for this.

Costs of the Gastric Balloon Procedure

One reason is because gastric balloon procedure costs are no longer beyond the reach of most people who feel they could benefit from it. Even if it is too costly in your own country, you can more often than not travel to another country where the procedure costs significantly less. Medical tourism is big business in some countries, and weight loss procedures play a large role in the medical tourism industry. You would be amazed that the same exact device is sold at very different prices, even direct from the manufacturer, between different countries. It's actually somewhat sad that that's the case, because in the United States, the gastric balloon procedure typically costs around eight to ten thousand dollars or more, whereas you can have the same procedure done in places like Mexico, where the total cost, not including airfare, can be as low as four to five thousand dollars.

The Method for the Gastric Balloon Procedure – Knowing What to Expect

As one would expect, this life-changing journey can begin with just a single phone call. Once you have made the call, the next step will involve a consultation, which in many cases can be done online. The purpose of this consultation is to determine whether or not you qualify for the procedure. For example, if you suffer from certain medical conditions, or if your BMI (Body Mass Index) is outside of a certain range, you may not qualify for the procedure. The different providers in our network all have different guidelines, because medicine is practiced differently among different medical professionals due to their different experiences, preferences, or often just their training.

In the United States, if your Body Mass Index is not between 30 and 40, you might not qualify for the procedure. People with a BMI of 30 to 34.9 are considered to be obese, while people with a BMI of 35 to 39.9 are considered to be severely obese. From this, we can see that in the United States, doctors might only perform this procedure on people who are clinically obese or severely obese. In some other countries, such as Canada, Mexico, Australia, and the United Kingdom, people with a BMI of 27 or higher also qualify for the gastric balloon procedure. If your BMI is above 40, looking into other weight loss solutions such as the gastric sleeve surgery may be better suited for your needs.

Once all the formalities have been dealt with, a date and time will be set for the procedure to be carried out. The general advice you will receive is to not to eat or drink anything past midnight the day before your procedure is performed. As one would expect, it is very important that your stomach is completely empty. When you arrive for your gastric balloon procedure, you will first be made to feel comfortable, and then a special numbing spray will be sprayed into your throat. Next, a special mouthpiece will be fitted which serves to keep your mouth open.

With everything in place and ready to go, in a typical balloon procedure, the physician will feed a camera down your esophagus, and into your stomach. Once he or she has checked everything, the camera is removed, and the balloon is then placed in the stomach using the same technique. The balloon is inflated via the attached tube, and then the doctor will go in with the camera again to make sure the balloon is in the right position. In most cases, the entire procedure from start to finish takes about 30 minutes, and you are usually able to leave within a couple of hours.

NOTE: There are four different types of balloons that can be used. The above method only applies to the gastric balloon procedure using Orbera, ReShape, and Spatz balloons. When Obalon balloons are used, the procedure is somewhat different because Obalon balloons are swallowed in pill form, with patients swallowing a total of three pills over a period of three months. The major difference here is that there is no need for an endoscope.

All gastric balloon procedures leave the balloon in place for a period of six months. In other words, after six months, the balloons have to be removed, and for this, an endoscope is necessary, regardless of which balloon type was used. It should also be noted that the original cost of the gastric balloon surgery you are initially quoted may or may not include the cost of balloon removal. This is one specific detail we advise you to ask your doctor before moving forward with the procedure so you can be aware of the full costs involved.

What to Expect After Balloon Placement

Some people experience vomiting and/or nausea for the first few hours following the procedure. Also, for the first weeks following the procedure, you will have to follow a “transitional” diet plan which should be provided prior to your discharge from the provider's care. Generally speaking, you will begin with light liquids such as milk, water, juice, and then progress to more substantial liquids such as soups for example.
After this initial period, it is highly recommended to follow a healthy and well-balanced diet, and optionally, you could have one which has been drawn up by a dietician or nutritionist who is adequately experienced in this field and familiar to your case, so they could give you personalized recommendations and follow your individual progress.
One of the most significant differences you will experience is the fact that you should feel completely full, even after eating only a very small portion of food. Just how soon you start losing weight will depend on a number of things, including the sort of diet you adopt; your metabolism, etc. Some people lose weight quicker than others, but providing you don't go out of your way to put on weight again, you should experience significant weight loss as a result of this procedure.

What Are the Downsides?

As with any sort of medical procedure, the gastric balloon procedure does have a few downsides, but fortunately nothing too serious - notwithstanding the usual risks of weight loss surgery. Tens of thousands of endoscopies are performed around the world every day, and if you think about it, a gastric balloon procedure is basically nothing more than an endoscopy. For many people, the biggest downside will be the fact that permanent weight loss cannot be guaranteed. This is because the amount you eat is only restricted for as long as the balloons are left in place. If you revert back to your old eating habits once the balloons come out, you will simply begin putting on weight again.
What Are the Benefits?

Obviously, significant weight loss is, for most patients, the biggest and most important benefit. Not only does it give your self-confidence and self-esteem a huge boost, it should also significantly reduce the risk of you suffering from a range of potentially fatal diseases. Once you reach your ideal weight range, your health should improve, your fitness should improve, and you should just become a happier person in general. Another attractive benefit is the cost of the gastric balloon procedure, given that it is generally cheaper than certain other types of weight loss surgeries.

Embark on the Most Rewarding Journey of your Life

If you are considering something like the gastric balloon procedure, you have probably tried lots of different ways to lose weight, and each time you have failed to get the results you were hoping for. Well, that is all about to change, because Weight Loss Agents can turn your weight loss dreams into reality.

As a well established medical tourism agency, Weight Loss Agents works with some of the most experienced doctors in this field; doctors who specialize in weight loss surgery procedures, including the gastric balloon procedures.

Weight Loss Agents has a network of providers who offer packages that include everything necessary for your chosen procedure. Surgeon's fees, facility fees, and anesthesia fees are all included. The only thing which is not included is the cost of your travel to get yourself there and back. It really is a matter of “The Price You See Is The Price You Pay”* – subject to standard industry disclaimer that after you've been discharged from your surgical encounter, any fees or expenses due to complications are not included in your price. Call 1-855-753-3833 today, and allow Weight Loss Agents to help you achieve what you once thought was impossible.


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