How Is Orbera Inserted? Step-by-Step Guide

When considering the Orbera intragastric balloon, it is essential to know how the procedure is actually done, what the deflated and filled gastric balloons look like, and what it is filled with. These are very important questions in order to make an informed decision and be better prepared for the procedure. Therefore, now we are going to talk about the insertion of a gastric balloon inside the stomach, the characteristics of the balloon, and what to do before and after the procedure.

How to Prepare for the Gastric Balloon Insertion Procedure

Before diving into the description of the balloon implantation procedure, we need to discuss a very important thing: preparation for the procedure.

Let’s take the case of our patient, a male with a BMI of 35. He has no other health conditions that could affect the procedure. We set a date for our patient to have the balloon placed in his stomach and asked him to NOT eat or drink anything for 12 hours before the appointment. If there is food or liquid in the stomach, there is a risk that the food might get into the lungs and cause harm.

We should see this as a first effort to change our lives. The procedure is asking you to show some motivation. If you can go 12 hours without food, that means you are ready to have the procedure done and transform your lifestyle for the better.

On the day of the procedure, when a patient comes to the doctor, he will be weighed and asked for any changes related to his health since the last visit to the doctor. The doctor needs to know about your health conditions before going further with the procedure. For example, if a woman could get pregnant and does not know exactly if she is pregnant, she would be asked to take a pregnancy test.

Finally, after making sure that the patient is ready and has no health conditions that could impede the procedure, the doctor starts the insertion of the balloon into the stomach.

What Is The Gastric Balloon Implantation Procedure?

Orbera Balloon Insertion Walkthrough - Batash Endoscopic Weight Loss Center in NYC

In this video, I walk through an Orbera balloon insertion! Not only is the procedure done within minutes, but you are also ready to leave soon after! I'm here to assist you in your weight loss journey as well and would love to hear from you.

Step 1 – Anesthesia & Set-Up

First, the patient is given local anesthesia and laid on the side. A supportive mouthpiece is placed to help keep the mouth open during the procedure.

A patient preparing for the Orbera procedure
A patient preparing for the Orbera procedure

Step 2 – Prior Stomach Inspection

Then Dr. Batash starts inserting the endoscope through the mouth to inspect the stomach and make sure it is clear and nothing can obstruct the insertion procedure.

Endoscope has an attached camera and a light that helps to see everything clearly inside the esophagus and stomach. Everything that the camera sees is shown on the large screen in the operating room.

The doctor makes a quick inspection of the stomach with the endoscope. The doctor goes through the esophagus, reaches the stomach, and inspects the first portion of the small intestine as well. After a successful inspection, the doctor starts preparing for the insertion of an intragastric balloon.

Inspection of the stomach before the implantation of intragastric balloon
Inspection of the stomach before the implantation of intragastric balloon

Step 3 – Deflated Balloon Insertion

Dr. Batash takes the deflated Orbera balloon by Apollo. The deflated gastric balloon looks like a thin white tube that has almost the same size as the thin flexible tube that is used for its insertion. The deflated balloon is attached to the end of the catheter, a hollow transparent thin tube that later is used for inflation of the balloon.

Deflated gastric balloon before insertion into the stomach
Deflated gastric balloon before insertion into the stomach

The doctor is inserting it into the esophagus through the mouth. Then we can see how the doctor catches up the balloon with the endoscope in order to be able to see it. Then the doctor places the deflated balloon inside the stomach.

After the balloon has been placed inside the stomach the doctor starts to fill it with saline (sterile salt water). While the doctor is filling the balloon with saline, the balloon gets larger. When the balloon is about the size of a grapefruit or in the range of 400cc to 700 cc, the inflation of the balloon is done and the catheter is detached.

The filled gastric balloon is a transparent soft silicone balloon full of saline with a white area on the top where the catheter was attached. Everything went perfectly.

Step 4 – Right after the Orbera Procedure

After the procedure is done, the patient will go to recovery. He will wake up after 3-4 minutes after the procedure. The patient was under local anesthesia which gets out of the body really quickly. Doctors will watch him for about 30 to 60 minutes and hydrate him with intravenous fluids. Then the patient is going home.

What Does A Gastric Balloon Actually Look Like Inside?

A picture is worth a thousand words. Here are real pictures of the gastric balloon in the stomach. You can see the result of Dr. Batash’s work; his patient has undergone the Orbera balloon insertion procedure. The photos were taken with the endoscopy camera after the balloon was inflated in the stomach.

What to Expect After the Orbera Balloon Is Implanted?

A significant portion of Dr. Batash’s patients come from other parts of the country and from other nations as well. Therefore, Dr. Batash usually asks his patients to stay in the same state or city as him for a couple of days after the implantation procedure, so that he can closely monitor the patient and provide help and support for him immediately if there is a need. After a few days, if everything is okay with the patient, he can travel back home.

Within the next 6 months, the doctor will supervise the patient and help him regulate his diet, create the optimal exercise program, and support him during the weight loss journey. After the first six months, the balloon will be removed and the weight loss program under the guidance of the doctor will continue for another 6 months. Although the weight loss may vary depending on the individual, on average patients lose about 30-40 lbs and sometimes can get rid of up to 100 lbs with the help of this procedure.

Batash Endoscopic Weight Loss Center is one of the most experienced and innovative clinics in the world specializing in endobariatric procedures. Dr. Steven Batash is a dedicated world expert on non-surgical weight loss procedures who cares about each of his patients. To learn more about our center and take the first step in your weight loss journey, please make an appointment.

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