The ORBERA® Weight Loss System

ORBERA® is a weight loss balloon designed to help with portion control and ultimately improve weight loss.

ORBERA® is a durable gastric balloon made out of soft silicone. While it is temporarily in your stomach for six months it encourages your body to adapt to healthier portion sizes. The shape and volume of the stomach balloon takes up enough space in your stomach to help you adapt to healthier portion sizes. The technology and design of the balloon helps patients lose up to 3x the weight of diet and exercise alone.

THE PLACEMENT

The ORBERA® is placed into the stomach in a simple, non-surgical outpatient procedure. First, a diagnostic endoscopy is done to ensure that there are no contraindications and that it is safe to perform the procedure. Once you are mildly sedated and comfortable, the procedure can begin.

The deflated gastric balloon is inserted through the esophagus and into your stomach. A syringe is then used to fill the balloon with a sterile saline solution. Once the weight loss balloon has been filled with saline it is about the size of a grapefruit. The entire procedure takes about 20-30 minutes. After roughly two hours of recovery, most patients head home to begin the rest of their new life.

Monday, August 31, 2015 – The first 4 Orbera balloons were inserted in the state of Missouri and Dr. Minkin placed 3 of them!

For years we as Bariatric surgeons have been unable to offer an effective tool for weight loss for a subset of obese patients that contact us. These patients have an obese BMI of 30 – 40 and have struggled with their weight problem for years and fear developing medical problems associated with their obesity that they have seen the grandparents, parents and siblings develop and suffer with. Because their BMI is below 35, or is between 35 and 40 and they haven’t developed say diabetes, hypertension, heart failure or sleep apnea yet, insurance companies and Bariatric program guidelines preclude them from obtaining approval for the traditional surgical weight loss procedures that we offer such as the Lap Band, Sleeve Gastrectomy and Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass procedures. Well now we have the Orbera intragastric balloon device for these patients.

Placement of the intragastric balloon is a non-surgical procedure and is done with an upper endoscope inserted through the mouth into the stomach. The procedure takes between 20-30 minutes and can be done under either general anesthesia or IV sedation on an outpatient basis. The balloon is inflated with sterile saline solution and remains in the stomach for 6 months working as a tool for the patient to control food intake and provide hunger control. After 6 months the balloon is then removed during another short, outpatient endoscopic procedure.

At St. Louis Bariatric Specialists each Orbera patient is entered into a structured 12 month program that includes preoperative teaching and assessment, close follow up with the surgeon and follow up with the nutritional specialist. Candidates for the procedure include those who:

  • have a BMI of 30 – 40
  • have been unable to achieve their weight loss goals with diet and exercise
  • are willing to participate in a 12 month supervised diet and behavior modification program

For more information please contact Dr. Minkin at 314-965-8410 to schedule a face to face consultation with him.

Our Program Team

When investigating bariatric surgery programs, look for those programs that take a multidisciplinary, fully integrated approach to the care of their patients. All members of our “Program Team” have undergone specific training and education regarding the care of the bariatric patient. At Des Peres Hospital, several of the nurses caring for the bariatric patients have undergone surgery by Dr. Minkin themselves and understand their patient’s postoperative experience firsthand.