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Swallowable Balloons Work to Curb Obesity: Study

Weight-loss balloons swallowed rather than surgically inserted in the stomach were shown to be safe and effective in preliminary trials, according to findings unveiled Thursday at a medical conference.

So-called intragastric balloons have been used for decades to help obese patients shed unwanted pounds. Inflated with water, the devices curb hunger and make it easier to diet by inducing a feeling of fullness.

Up to now, however, they could only be implanted in the stomach surgically, a costly procedure requiring general anesthesia or sedation.

In a small trial led by Roberta Ienca, a researcher in experimental medicine at Sapienza University in Rome, 42 obese patients — 29 men and 13 women — were fitted with balloons that were swallowed before being inflated with liquid.

“A catheter is attached to the balloon, which is folded into a capsule,” Ienca explained to AFP.

A doctor fills the balloon via the tiny tube, which is then removed via the mouth with a tug. “This process takes just a few seconds,” she added.

The body-mass index (BMI) of the volunteers varied between 30 and 45. The threshold for obesity is a BMI of 30.

The balloons remained in the stomach for 16 weeks, during which time patients were put on a low-carbohydrate, low-calorie diet.

At the end of that time, an internal release valve automatically opens and drains the balloon, which is then excreted.

On average, volunteers shed more than 33 pounds, which amounted to 31 percent of excess weight.

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No serious side effects were reported.

After the trial, patients were transitioned to a Mediterranean diet, heavy on vegetables and olive oil, and light on protein and starch.

The new technique “appears to be a safe and effective weight-loss method,” Ienca commented in a statement.

Because the swallowable balloon “does not require endoscopy, surgery or anaesthesia, this may make it suitable for a larger population of obese patients not responding to diet or lifestyle treatment.”

It could also lead to significant cost savings, she added.

“In itself, gastric balloons are not a long-term solution for weight loss,” Simon Cork, a researcher in investigative medicine at Imperial College London who was not involved in the study, commented after reviewing the results.

“Nevertheless, gastric balloons are still useful for some patients, and the introduction of a device which doesn’t require surgery to implant is a positive step forward.”

Developed by US-based Allurion Technologies, the system is already marketed in Europe in France, Italy, Spain, Belgium and Greece. It is also available in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

The company intends to begin the FDA approval process in the United States soon, Ienca said.

The findings were presented at the European Congress on Obesity in Porto, Portugal, which runs through May 20.

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The information herein on "Swallowable Balloons Work to Curb Obesity: Study" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, or licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

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Our information scope is limited to Chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, contributing etiological viscerosomatic disturbances within clinical presentations, associated somatovisceral reflex clinical dynamics, subluxation complexes, sensitive health issues, and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions.

We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.

Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.

We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez DC or contact us at 915-850-0900.

We are here to help you and your family.

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Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*

email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com

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Disclaimer *

The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.

We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*

email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com

phone: 915-850-0900

Licensed in Texas & New Mexico *

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CIFM, IFMCP, ATN, CCST
My Digital Business Card

Post Disclaimer

Professional Scope of Practice *

The information herein on "Swallowable Balloons Work to Curb Obesity: Study" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, or licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

Blog Information & Scope Discussions

Our information scope is limited to Chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, contributing etiological viscerosomatic disturbances within clinical presentations, associated somatovisceral reflex clinical dynamics, subluxation complexes, sensitive health issues, and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions.

We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.

Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.

We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez DC or contact us at 915-850-0900.

We are here to help you and your family.

Blessings

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*

email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com

Licensed in: Texas & New Mexico*

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CIFM*, IFMCP*, ATN*, CCST
My Digital Business Card

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