Frequently Asked Questions
Once placed in the body, the saline-filled balloon will occupy about one-third of the stomach. As a result, the quantity of food the stomach can hold is decreased, and the presence of the balloon causes the stomach to empty slower, meaning food stays in the stomach much longer. In unison, these effects promote eating smaller amounts of food.
The Spatz3 Adjustable Gastric Balloon has several advantages:
- As the only adjustable balloon, the Spatz3 is dynamic, and its volume can be changed to best fit your needs.
- Compared to other products on the market, Spatz3 is approved for longer implantation time resulting in increased weight loss.
With our unique adjustability feature, the Spatz3 is the only gastric balloon to provide these advantages. Leaving the balloon in the stomach for longer without adjusting its volume is not likely to produce greater weight loss. The extended treatment time allows for additional behavioral modification which yields longer lasting results and behavioral changes.
The Spatz3 is inserted during a standard endoscopy under conscious sedation. Once inside the stomach, the balloon is filled with sterile saline using a small tube attached to the balloon.
The insertion of the balloon and adjustment procedures normally take approximately 15 minutes, after which patients are monitored and sent home within the hour.
The Spatz3 gastric balloon is designed to assist with weight loss for people who have to lose 10 kilograms (22 lbs) or more, and for individuals with a BMI greater than 27 (in some countries the standard BMI is greater than 30).
Additionally, the Spatz3 can be used by people who are not suitable or afraid of undergoing weight loss surgery (such as Gastric Bypass, Sleeve Gastrectomy, Lap Band surgery, etc). The balloon may assist in reducing weight prior to any surgery, therefore reducing the risks associated with surgical procedures. The Spatz3 Adjustable Gastric Balloon is the ideal non-invasive alternative to bariatric surgeries.
The Spatz gastric balloon can be inserted in the stomach for a twelve-month period (outside the US).
Throughout your treatment, your physician will prescribe various oral medication to reduce your stomach acid (which may reduce the possibility of stomach irritation and damage to your balloon).
A blue liquid will be placed inside the balloon in order to detect a leak. In the case that the balloon does leak, your urine will turn green due to the blue liquid. If this occurs, your doctor should be notified immediately and schedule a removal of the balloon.
It is important to understand that the gastric balloon is a tool to increase weight loss and should be used in conjunction with a coordinated diet, exercise, and behavioral modification program. Your weight loss results (and maintenance) will depend on how closely you follow your diet and adopt long-term lifestyle changes. There have been average weight losses of approximately 16 kg (35 lbs) to 25 kg (55 lbs) reported with the Spatz3 Adjustable Gastric Balloon.
There remains a possibility that you will only lose a small amount of weight or lose no weight at all, once again depending on your commitment to the dietary and behavioral changes necessary for your success.
There is also a chance for unhealthy and uncontrolled weight loss that can create adverse health consequences. Make sure to speak with your physician about this possibility.
For a few days after placement of the balloon, it is very likely that you will experience nausea, abdominal pain, and vomiting. While your physician will prescribe medication to help minimize these potential effects, these side effects can persist during the first week.
Once you start eating normally after the first week, your side effects will be related to the types of food and amount of food that you eat. Some side effects of eating incorrectly include bloating, belching, nausea, pain, vomiting, or heartburn.
During the first few days after the procedure, you are most likely going to feel some discomfort in your stomach. After this initial period, you may experience: feelings of fullness, bloating, heaviness, or no effects at all until you overeat.
Patients should plan at least 3 to 4 days of inactivity in order to recover from the procedure. Depending on how quickly your body adjusts to the presence of the balloon, you will be able to return to normal activity sooner or later than 3 to 4 days.
The “Own It” follow-up program is crucial to your success with the balloon in learning new life skills. You will have scheduled meetings with your doctor throughout the course of your treatment. Most importantly, you will meet with your dietician/nutrition counselor at least once to twice a month while the balloon is in place. The more frequently you follow up, the higher your chances for success! During the treatment, your progress will be monitored as you learn valuable principles of health, exercise and nutrition that will provide you with a foundation for long-term weight loss success.
If you feel as though the balloon has less effect or that your weight loss begins to diminish, it’s time for an up-adjustment to increase the balloon volume. Normally, gastric balloon effects diminish after 2 to 4 months, so you can expect to have your first adjustment usually after the 4th month. This procedure can be done more than once and only requires a short 15-minute endoscopy with conscious sedation. In the case of balloon intolerance, the balloon volume can also be decreased.
The Spatz3 Adjustable Gastric Balloon is removed during a 15-minute endoscopy procedure under conscious sedation, the same way it was placed.
You should not plan to follow your routine activities during the first week after the procedure. After your body adjusts to the presence of the balloon, you can return to your normal activities. We highly recommend starting an exercise program as it will improve your chances of successful weight loss.
Patients can drink alcohol in small amounts (such as two glasses of wine per week). Alcohol consumption raises one’s risk of ulceration.
With the presence of the balloon, you will not feel like eating as much as you previously did. If you excessively overeat, you will most likely feel symptoms of bloating, belching, vomiting, nausea, heartburn, and cramping. If the overeating continues, you can impede your progress and cause further symptoms such as dehydration and excessive vomiting. Ultimately, such symptoms can become dangerous.