(WXYZ) – Weight loss for those who are obese can be an overwhelming challenge. While there are several medical interventions available to manage weight, the FDA is referring to the weight loss balloon treatment.
They’ve been used with medically recommended cases since 2006. However unfortunately within the last year, five people have died from complications associated with this medical method of weight loss.
No definitive causes have been determined in these cases. The FDA has not indicated that the deaths are related to the device or the insertion procedure. However, a couple of deaths may be related to known complications like perforations in the stomach or the esophagus.
The treatment involves a medical instrument that guides one or two uninflated balloons through the mouth and into the stomach. The balloons are filled with saline and are left there for several months. T
hey mimic a feeling of fullness by taking up space in your stomach. Before considering medical treatments, I highly recommend lifestyle changes so here are my prescriptions:
- Determine what factors may have led to your personal weight struggle. They can be environmental, psychological, genetics or underlying medical conditions. Knowing the root cause is the first step in treating your particular situation.
- Understand your relationship with food and the choices you make. Try keeping a journal noting what you eat and why.
- Set goals to cut calories, make healthy food choices and incorporate movement into your daily life.
- Celebrate small victories with friends and family to help you maintain a positive attitude.
If you feel you need a medical procedure, talk with your doctor first. And thoroughly research different intervention methods before selecting the safest method of treatment that’s right for you.
Treatment can be considered when diet and exercise don’t work. But it’s important to make lifestyle changes because even if you are prescribed a device, you will still need to eat right and exercise.
All weight loss treatments including medical devices, surgery, and prescriptions medications come with risks and benefits. And they should only be considered as a last resort.
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