PREPARATION FOR THE INSERTION Of AN INTRAGASTRIC BALLOON
The surgeon and nurses will work closely with you to prepare you for the procedure. You will come to a preliminary examination and assessment session, where you will be asked about your general condition and possibly medication consumption or previous surgeries. In some special cases, your surgeon may order specific tests, such as an ECG, x-ray, or blood tests.
You will be asked to fast 8 hours before the intragastric procedure.
WHAT YOU WILL GO THROUGH DURING THE PROCEDURE
The procedure begins with you receiving local anesthetic spray in the throat and a relaxing intravenous medication. Subsequently, the nurse will insert a plastic ring between the teeth to keep your mouth open while protecting your teeth. Then the binoculars are passed through your mouth and down into your stomach. This is not painful and you will be able to breathe without problems. It may be necessary to blow air to get a better view in your stomach. This can also give a strange feeling and it can make you want to burp. The balloon is lowered into your abdomen and then the intragastric balloon is inflated with saline solution. Finally, the scope (binoculars) will be inserted into the abdomen one last time to double check whether the balloon is in the correct position and properly inflated.
You will be able to return home within an hour but you MUST NOT drive a car or motorcycle for the rest of the day.
PROCEDURE AFTER INSERTING AN INTRAGASTRIC BALLOON
The first 3-7 days after an intragastric balloon insertion, you may feel uncomfortable and have nausea. This will go over especially if you take the prescribed medication exactly according to our instructions. It is important to take the medicine before the onset of nausea.
Along with the feasibility study, you will be instructed in dietary changes and exercise, which are crucial to the success of the treatment and your weight loss.
After 6-12 months, the intragastric balloon will be removed endoscopically under local anesthesia. Preparation requires that you be on a liquid diet for 3 days prior to the procedure, of which the last 24 hours should only be on clear liquids, followed by fasting from midnight. After removal, you will be discharged within an hour.
RISKS AND COMPLICATIONS OF AN INTRAGASTRIC BALLOON
All treatment interventions are associated with the risk of complications. Although the risk is very small and that every effort will be made to reduce or prevent them. Some of the risks are:
- Gastric ulcer (can be prevented by taking stomach acid medicine).
- Diarrhea or constipation (can be easily treated with various over-the-counter medications)
- Aspiration pneumonia (occurs quite rarely)
- Acid reflux and heartburn (can be prevented by taking stomach acid medication)
- Puncture of intragastric balloon and intestinal obstruction (occurs extremely rarely and only a few cases are described in the literature)
Please note that not all users will be able to achieve the same results with a GastriBall® Stomach Balloon.