Congratulations! You have completed the first six months of your weight loss program and now you are ready for the gastric balloon removal process. This article will explain how the gastric balloon is removed and what you need to do to prepare for the process.
What Is The Gastric Balloon Removal Process Like?
Removing the intragastric balloon is done very similarly to the way it is placed. Patients are given a mild sedative so they will be comfortable during the procedure.
The endoscope is placed down the patient’s throat and the saline solution is drained from the balloon in the same way it was filled. Once the balloon is deflated, it is removed from the stomach through the endoscope and out through the patient’s mouth. The procedure normally takes between 20 and 30 minutes.
After the procedure, you will stay for a short time for observation and then will be released to go home. You may be groggy from the sedation and must have a friend or family member drive you home. It is not recommended you drive or operate any type of heavy machinery for at least 8 hours after your procedure because the sedation interferes with response times, etc.
What Do I Need To Do To Prepare For The Removal Of My Intragastric Balloon?
It takes a few days to prepare for the removal of a gastric balloon and the process will be similar to what was followed before placement.
It is important to follow the directions provided by the doctor to ensure the safe removal of the stomach balloon. There must not be any solid food in the stomach at the time the removal process is done or it could lead to serious consequences. If the instructions are not followed exactly as outlined below, the removal process will have to be rescheduled.
- 48 hours before the balloon removal, the patient begins taking a prescription medication that will help with heartburn or reflux that may occur after the intragastric balloon removal;
- Patients must be off solid foods for 48 hours prior to the removal of their gastric balloon. The doctor will provide more specific instructions on what type of liquid diet to follow for your specific circumstances;
- During your 2-day liquid diet, it is also recommended that patients take sips of diet Coke, diet Pepsi, or Coke Zero to help clean the balloon and move any solids out of the stomach;
- 8-12 hours before the procedure, the patient cannot have anything to eat or drink. This is commonly referred to as the “after-midnight rule”.
What Will I Feel Like After My Gastric Balloon Removal?
Compared to the recovery after placing the gastric balloon, this process will be a piece of cake! Most patients do not experience severe adverse side effects, nausea, or vomiting. It is important to continue eating and exercising just as if the balloon were still in place. Any drastic changes in diet could upset the stomach and not adhering to the lifestyle changes made during the first six months may result in weight gain.
Tips For Maintaining Weight Loss After Gastric Balloon Removal
- Eat mindfully and slowly, chewing your food thoroughly;
- Stay on a schedule such as 3 meals and 2 snacks per day or the schedule you have grown accustomed to over the past six months;
- Eat nutrient-rich foods that will help you stay full longer (keep following the nutritional and dietary program provided and do not backslide into eating junk or processed foods);
- Continue to avoid sugar, fast food, and soda;
- Keep following the exercise and physical activity routines that you have established during the first portion of your intragastric balloon weight loss program. If you require a more challenging routine, consult with your program team and they will help you adjust your exercise routine;
- Utilize your support system. If you are having issues with being hungry or gaining weight after the removal of your gastric balloon, talk to your support team. Do not wait until the situation becomes critical. They can assist you with options such as weight loss medications that can help to curb hunger and boost your metabolism.
If you have any questions or are experiencing any issues after the removal of your intragastric balloon, contact your weight loss support team.
If you are interested in learning more about The Orbera intragastric balloon and how it can help you lose weight, contact Simmons MD Advanced Weight Loss Solutions today! We are here to ensure your success and will support you throughout your weight loss journey. Schedule your consultation today!