Effectiveness of Intra-Gastric Balloon as a Bridge to Definitive Surgery in the Super Obese (2019)

Type of publication:
Journal article

Ball, William; Raza, Syed Soulat; Loy, John; *Riera, Manel; *Pattar, Jayaprakash; *Adjepong, Samuel; *Rink, James

Obesity surgery; Feb 2019

BACKGROUND British National guidelines (NICE) recommend bariatric surgery for patients with a body mass index (BMI) > 40 kg/m2, or BMI > 35 kg/m2 with any comorbidities of the metabolic syndrome. Intra-gastric balloons (IGB) can be used in super obese patients as a first step, before definitive surgery. AIMS Quantify weight loss 6 months after IGB placement, measure progression to definitive surgery and identify complications.METHODSData collected retrospectively on 50 patients. Forty-six proposed for definitive bariatric surgery, four patients excluded. Analysis performed using SPSS v23.0. RESULTS Median weight decreased from 165.5 to 155 kg (range 78 to 212, p < 0.01), BMI from 57.4 to 52.15 (range 32.9 to 70.5, p < 0.01), percentage excess weight loss (%EWL) was 12.9% (range – 3.3 to 64.66%, p < 0.01) and BMI reduction was 4.25 kg/m2 (range – 1.3 to 13.9, p < 0.01). Twenty-nine out of 46 patients (63%) progressed to definitive bariatric surgery. Ten out of 46 patients (21.7%) had complications requiring readmission. Seven of these patients required early balloon removal and six failed to progress to definitive surgery. Six patients had a second balloon placement, their actual weight loss was less successful, with some regaining weight. DISCUSSION IGB is useful to aid weight loss prior to definitive bariatric surgery. Results from first balloon placement are encouraging and comparable with other studies “as reported by Genco et al. (Int J of Obes 30:129-133, 2006).” Readmission due to nausea, vomiting, dehydration and poor compliance may be associated with poor weight loss and failure to progress to definitive surgery. Second balloon placements were less successful. CONCLUSION IGB as bridging therapy is a safe and useful adjunct. Sequential IGBs do not seem to provide additional benefit.