15 July, 2023

What BMI Is Needed for a Gastric Balloon?

Currently, obesity has become a worldwide pandemic with more than 1.4 billion adults being affected worldwide. Yet, it is not a new problem. Over the centuries, many techniques have been created to solve this problem. However, not all solutions are equally effective and suitable for everyone. Therefore, nowadays a variety of weight loss solutions have been developed to suit every group of people struggling with obesity.

A gastric balloon is a great solution for many people struggling with being overweight or obese, especially for those who did not successfully get results from diet and exercise alone. Orbera balloon is an effective non-surgical method for weight loss that does not require any incisions or cuts. In this article, we will discuss what kind of patients can qualify for an intragastric balloon.

What BMI Qualifies For A Gastric Balloon?

In the US, people with a BMI of 30 to 40 are typically eligible for the gastric balloon procedure, although balloons are placed for BMI values above and below that range as well.

Our BMI calculator can help you easily compute your BMI and tell which weight category you belong to.

BMI categories

What Are Other Requirements for Getting a Weight Loss Balloon?

In general, the main qualifications for the placement of gastric balloons are:

  • Adult patients with BMI in the range of 30 to 40.
  • Patients with a BMI of 27 and related comorbidities such as hypertension, hyperlipidemia, cardiovascular disease, or diabetes mellitus.
  • Patients who are not recommended to undergo bariatric surgery for some reason or simply do not want to. Sometimes a patient is restricted from having any bariatric surgeries due to high risks of complications. In other situations, a patient can have a personal preference for non-invasive weight loss solutions over surgical interventions.
  • Lifestyle and behavior changes did not help to achieve any significant weight loss results.
  • Balloons can be placed for BMI less than 30 and above 40, on a case-by-case basis.

Gastric Balloon For BMI of 50 As A Preparation For Bariatric Surgery

Usually, people who have more severe cases of obesity are recommended to undergo bariatric surgery instead of an intragastric balloon. However, there are also some cases when a BMI of higher than 40 can be eligible for the gastric balloon. In these circumstances, an intragastric balloon can be used as an intermediary intervention before bariatric surgery.

For instance, a patient has a BMI of 50 which is qualified for bariatric surgery but there are high risks connected with anesthesia or techniques of the surgical intervention. In this case, it is possible to first start with an intragastric balloon to induce a certain amount of weight loss and prepare for bariatric surgery which can reduce the associated risks of the complications after or during the surgery.

The Most Important Factor To Qualify For A Gastric Balloon

When considering whether a gastric balloon is the right choice for you or not, it is important to keep in mind that a gastric balloon is a temporary, completely reversible solution. The endoscopic placement of the balloon does not change the anatomy of the stomach because it is safely removed after about 6 months following the insertion. With the balloon, the weight loss results in the first three to four months will be rapid and significant. However, after the removal, whether you will keep losing or at least maintain the weight loss will depend on the healthy lifestyle habits that you were able to adopt during the time with the balloon.

Therefore, before opting for the gastric balloon, the patient needs to clearly understand that it is not a monotherapy. In order to achieve any significant and sustainable results a proper weight loss program incorporating lifestyle modifications such as regular exercise and a balanced diet should be established and closely followed by the patient.
It is possible only when done by a team of medical professionals from a variety of fields such as registered dieticians, endoscopists, gastroenterologists, fitness coaches, nurses, and many others. In fact, the research indicates that the multidisciplinary approach provided by specialists in different fields brings more effective weight loss results than individual healthcare providers.

This article was provided for informational purposes only and does not replace a consultation with a doctor. To decide whether you qualify for the intragastric balloon or not you should make an appointment with a doctor and discuss this matter with experienced medical professionals in the field of obesity medicine such as Dr. Avik Sarkar and Dr. Haroon Shahid.

Reveal Weight Loss Provides A Comprehensive Weight Loss Program

A multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals at Reveal Weight Loss designs comprehensive weight loss programs with gastric balloons that deliver the best results for the patients. Experienced doctors will help you identify whether you are a good candidate for gastric balloon placement and create a unique weight loss program specifically for you. Thanks to years of experience in obesity medicine, our doctors have adopted the best practices and can find the best option for each patient. Even if the gastric balloon will not be suitable for you, you will have your problem solved in the most optimal way under the guidance of highly qualified doctors and simply caring human beings.