About Orbera

The ORBERA® Managed Weight Loss System is a non-surgical procedure that helps patients initiate and maintain long-term weight loss.

The procedure places a small silicone balloon into the stomach, which takes up space so you feel full faster and consume smaller portions of food.

Who it’s For

ORBERA® works well for moderately overweight individuals who haven’t succeeded with diet and exercise and want to break through weight loss barriers without surgery.

How the Procedure Works

Under mild sedation, a board-certified gastroenterologist endoscopically places the thin, deflated balloon in place in the stomach through the esophagus. The balloon is then inflated with saline until it’s about the size of a grapefruit. This non-surgical and painless outpatient procedure takes about 10-15 minutes. After six months, the balloon is removed the same way it was placed.

How Much Weight You’ll Lose

The average person loses 3x more weight than with exercise and diet alone. In the U.S. clinical study, patients lost an average of 21.8 lbs, but motivated patients may lose far more especially as you see the pounds come off quickly after balloon placement. Best of all, you’re likely to keep the weight off as we partner together over the next 12 months with comprehensive diet, exercise, nutrition, and behavioral counseling to provide support and ensure long-term results.

Frequently Asked Questions

The device is used in obese adults with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 to 40 kg/m2, who have been unable to lose weight through diet and exercise.

  • You are not eligible for ORBERA® if you have had prior stomach or bariatric surgery, including hiatal hernia repair, lap band, or gastric bypass.
  • You are not eligible if you use anti-inflammatory medications (such as aspirin or ibuprofen) on a daily basis.
  • You are not eligible if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

No, insurance does not cover the ORBERA® balloon, but we offer financing options.

At this time, it is considered a “cosmetic” procedure, even though weight loss can be expected to reduce your risk of other serious health issues.

Both the balloon insertion and removal take approximately 20 minutes.

Orbera is a non-invasive option that is removed after six months and does not permanently alter your anatomy. It is typically performed under sedation but not general surgery (no ventilator is required).

You will be seen by your physician approximately 1-2 weeks after your balloon is placed. You will meet with your dietician once each month for the entire 12-month treatment program. These sessions are typically conducted via video conference (telemedicine) from the comfort of your home. Your physician will be available to see you throughout the treatment period, though we do not require mandatory office visits on a set schedule.

Many people say it feels like they’ve eaten a large meal immediately after the procedure. Many patients experience nausea and sometimes even vomiting in the first two weeks after placement, as the stomach is getting used to the balloon. After a few weeks, the ability to “tell” where the balloon is goes away. It is not noticeable during exercise, according to our patients.

No, the balloon is not visible from the outside.

Weight loss is rapid, with most weight loss occurring in the first 3-4 months. It is important for you to understand that the balloon is a tool to aid weight loss and must be used in conjunction with a diet, exercise, and behavior modification program. The amount of weight you lose and maintain will depend on how closely you follow your diet and adopt long-term lifestyle changes. In studies, people lost an average of 13% of their body weight at 6 months, and people with the balloon lost 3 times the weight of those on a diet and exercise program alone. That means that if you weigh 250 pounds, you would be reasonably expected to lose about 32 pounds. The range of weight loss depends on the person and their motivation. In general, we quote studies which predict a weight loss of 30-50 pounds.

Gastric balloons have been used in the management of obesity for over 20 years. Over this time they have evolved in shape, size, and design, resulting in a modern, durable product, which is now well established as a safe weight loss procedure. Over 270,000 ORBERA® balloons have been placed worldwide. The risk of a serious side effect is about 1 in 10,000. Potential serious side effects include stomach ulceration, balloon deflation, bowel obstruction, intestinal perforation, and death.

Balloon deflation is a rare event, typically related to a balloon that has been in the stomach for over 6 months. This event is estimated to occur in 0.3% of patients (3 out of every 1000 patients). You will be monitored for balloon deflation while the balloon dwells and will be required to have it removed at 6 months.

In the unlikely event that your Orbera balloon should deflate, you may no longer feel full after eating. If the balloon were to leave your stomach and enter the small intestine, you could develop symptoms of bowel obstruction, including pain, nausea, and vomiting. If you suspect this may be the case, notify your doctor immediately. A simple abdominal x-ray can determine whether this has occurred. If it has, your doctor will arrange to remove the deflated balloon.