Gastric balloon

What is it?

A gastric balloon is a soft silicone expandable balloon that is placed in your stomach in order to help you to lose weight. It encourages you to control meal portions and helps you to manage your hunger. It is implanted during a short and simple procedure. Depending on a type of the balloon, it stays in for either 6 or 12 months. The balloon fills up a part of your stomach so you can work on your food portions and new healthier eating habits. The balloon is removed similar way it is implanted. In order to achive the best possible results of the treatment it is recommended to follow a diet and a workout plan while the balloon remains in your stomach as well as after it is removed.

Who it is for?

Patients between 18 and 60 with a BMI of at least 27, who are willing to change their eating habits. Moderately overweight patients who have been unable to achieve their desired weight loss through traditional weight loss methods such as diet & exercise. People who are not eligible for, or who are uncomfortable with, other forms of weight loss surgery who are aiming to lose between 5 and 30kg (between 11 and 66 lbs). Patients that qualify for the treatment must be of general good health with results of blood test, ECG and digestive tract endoscopy within the norm (tests are performed at the clinic before the procedure). You will also undergo a face to face consultation with a doctor and a nutritionist.

In order to check if you qualify for the treatment please fill in the medical questionnaire HERE.

Procedure info

The procedure is simple and non-surgical. It is performed with IV anaesthetics – sedation (or just local anaesthtics (throat numbing spray) for the patients who do not qualify for the sedation) . The balloon is placed by a fully qualified and experienced surgeon through a special tube through your mouth. Once inserted in the stomach, the empty balloon is filled with sterile saline. When the balloon is full, it is too large to get out of the stomach. It floats freely in the stomach and is removed after the period of maximum 6 or 12 months, the same way it was inserted. During the time the balloon is in, the patient works on changing eating habits and a healthier lifestyle.

Hospital stay

You will be admitted to the hospital on day 1. During that day you will have all the required medical tests done and undergo consultations. The procedure will be done on day 2 of your hospital stay. After the procedure, you will stay overnight in the clinic. This is to make sure you are well and safe to be released the following morning on day 3. During your hospital stay, you will be accommodated in one of very comfortable patient recovery rooms. You will be looked after by a nurse and a doctor and will be given hydrating and nourishing IV drips. You may leave the clinic after a check-up the next morning assisted by an adult companion.

Clinic info

The procedure is performed in a state-of-art private hospital Wrocław clinic. Please find details in ‘Our clinics’.

Required stay in Poland

The minimum recommended stay in Poland is 5-6 nights. 1 before the admission to the hospital and further 2-3 nights after the release from the hospital. The stay at the hospital is 2 nights. Please note, such a prolonged stay in Poland is recommended by us due to the fact that most patients experience very unpleasant post-procedure symptoms during this time. It may be dangerous to your health and life to cut your stay short and travel while you are unwell. Such stay allows a safe, from the medical point of view, journey back home. We strongly recommend coming over to Poland with an adult companion. If you can stay longer in Poland, it’s always a good idea to do so. For the balloon removal, it is required to come over for a minimum of 3 nights (including one night of hospital stay).

Accommodation

W recommend one of the ‘‘Wrocław hotels‘. Please find more info in the ‘Accommodation’ section.

Contraindications

Blood coagulation disorders, gastric ulcer, heart diseases, liver diseases, lung diseases, previous gastrointestinal surgery, any inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract, potential upper gastrointestinal bleeding or other congenital anomalies, large hiatal hernia or other structural abnormality in the oesophagus or larynx, unwillingness to adopt the dietary habits and behaviour change critical to the success of the therapy, drug or alcohol addiction, pregnancy or breastfeeding, psychological disorder.

Possible complications

Symptoms such as nausea, stomach ache, stomach cramps, vomiting, diarrhea or pain may occur after the balloon implantation. They may last from one day up to a few weeks. In most patients, they usually last a few days. The full list of possible complications is described in detail in one of the files in “Useful files” below. Complications include the risks associated with an endoscopic procedure and those associated with the medications and methods used in this procedure, as well as your ability to tolerate a foreign object placed in your stomach. Possible complications include partial or complete blockage of the bowel by the balloon, insufficient or no weight loss, adverse health consequences resulting from weight loss, stomach discomfort, continuing nausea and vomiting, early balloon removal, abdominal or back pain, acid reflux, influence on digestion of food, blockage of food entering the stomach, bacterial growth in the fluid filling the balloon which can lead to infection, injury to the lining of the digestive tract, stomach or esophagus, and balloon deflation. For full safety information please talk with your doctor.

Post-operative guidelines

Include taking prescribed medication, dieting and exercising. Details provided by the doctor after the procedure.

Procedure cost

10 554 PLN / £2111 / €2345 for the 6-month Orbera balloon treatment and 11 424 PLN / £2285 / €2539 for the 12-month Orbera 365 treatment.

This includes a consultation with a doctor performing the procedure, a nutritionist consultation, required pre-op medical tests done during 1 day of hospital stay followed by an overnight stay in the hospital, anaesthetics, cost of the balloon, 1 night of hospital stay after the balloon implantation, drips and medication during the hospital stay, balloon removal after up to 6-12 months (depending on the balloon type).

An additional cost is prescribed medication (around 300 PLN / £60 / €67). They are to be purchased at a pharmacy in Poland.

Due to the coronavirus situation at the moment, on arrival at the hospital, you will be asked to take a quick Covid-19 swab test (cost 300 PLN / £60 / €67). A negative result allows being admitted to the hospital.

Flights

Return flight prices from the most popular locations start from around £50 / €56.

Wrocław airport WRO – around 20-min drive from the town

Katowice airport KTW – around 2,5h drive (own arrangements or additional charge for the transfers applies – subject to availability)

Transfers

Available upon request.

Usefull files