Advanced search

Obalon balloon - has anyone got any experience of this?

(45 Posts)
Goofymum Thu 06-Feb-14 22:20:15

I am thinking about getting an obalon balloon fitted and wondered if anyone had any experience? It's the new swallowable balloon, minimally invasive. It's £2000 for 1 balloon. Treatment lasts 12 weeks and you can lose around 50% of your excess weight, which is around 2 stone in my case. It seems it's for those who are not morbidly obese but are over BMI 27.

My concern would be the weight going back on rapidly after 12 weeks when it's taken out. Also, it's still very new, and a few people have had ulcers.

I know I can lose 2 stone by diet and exercise and not pay £2000 for a balloon but in 20 years I haven't managed to do it by conventional methods, maybe it's time to try something new.

OP’s posts: |
hiddenhome Sun 09-Feb-14 00:01:49

My 'something new' is low carbing and it's great. I've lost a stone since just after Christmas.

I've cut out all bread, pasta, biscuits, sweets, cake and white rice. Aim to increase protein, fruit, nuts, pulses and veg.

The weight drops off smile

MrBsMum Fri 14-Feb-14 10:39:54

Hi Goofymum, I had one fitted two days ago. It took a lot of deliberation but I decided to go for it after loads of research - in forums like this and the science stuff - and reflecting on all the failed attempts I've had trying everything from fruit only to protein only diets. And yes, everything in between including the sensible ones. There isn't yet a lot out there about the experience of obalon - unless you read Italian, it's been available there for longer than it has in the uk. But from reading the forums about other (older and larger) types of balloon I was expecting a few rough days with nausea, vomiting, cramps etc. but I've had very little of that. Thank goodness! I had some cramping on the first night when I was lying in bed. Possibly the posture? possibly I ate too late? But that's been the only side effect so far. And it definitely makes me eat less. Partly I'm more mindful of what I eat because it's very new and partly because £2000 is a lot of money! It IS a lot of money and that was a big part of my decision making but if it works it will be worth every penny. Like you, I've carried a lot of extra weight for decades not years. Good luck with your deliberations!! Xx

Walter123 Sat 15-Feb-14 12:14:07

Hi I'm also thinking about having one fitted for just 30 days
Can you please keep us updated on your progress
Maybe weekly ?

Goofymum Sat 15-Feb-14 23:13:23

Thanks MrBsmum. I have looked into this and it's available at my local Spire hospital in about 3 weeks. Am on the list to have it done.

Please do come back and say how you're getting on and the weight you've lost, I'd be really keen to know. I'll do the same once I have it done.

For me I think it will work for several reasons 1) the stomach size, obviously! 2) the money spent - failure is not an option! 3) a medical professional will be monitoring me (albeit only once or twice) so again, failure is not an option.

MrBsMum - how much do you have to lose?

OP’s posts: |
Bejalk Fri 07-Mar-14 14:55:58

Hey any updates on this . How is this going. Very interested.

JP0708 Wed 12-Mar-14 19:34:56

Hi. Just wanted to join the chat as I swallowed the obalon pill today! Short process, around 10 mins in total. Too early to give you any feedback but so far so good. I will update again in a few days but if anyone on here has one, I'd love to keep in contact. Jo

Kathy05 Thu 27-Mar-14 10:26:04

Hello. I'm just wondering how those of you that have had the balloon placement are getting along? I'm due to have one on 15th April and would love to know what to expect. Are you actually feeling full and losing weight? Has anyone experienced any side effects? Kathy

MrBsMum Mon 31-Mar-14 18:03:39

Hi Kathy, Jo, Goofymum and all,
I'm now 6 weeks on, have had a second balloon fitted and have lost about 4 kilos. Not a huge amount but it's ended up being an unusual and busy time - new job, some illness and a holiday - so perhaps it wasn't the best time to do this. That said, I've had few side effects, have definitely changed my eating habits. But this is no magic bullet. I think I'd hoped the balloon would do all the work for me. But for some reason if you continue to eat cream cakes it's not as effective! ;0) I'm thinking of having the third balloon and I've started being sensible as well with what I eat. Will let you know how that goes :0)

Kathy05 Mon 31-Mar-14 22:31:11

Hi MrBsMum,
Thanks for replying. Do you mind sharing what side effects you've been experiencing? I've read a lot about the older gastric balloons causing really offensive smelling burping. I don't think I'd tolerate that we'll at all! If you're considering the third balloon does that mean two aren't really making you feel as full as you'd like? I am wondering whether another Weight Watchers subscription may be more sensible for me. Especially if you need as much willpower whether you have the balloon(s) in or not. Good luck with the time you have left. It's a lot of money to spend to lose not much weight so I hope it starts coming off now you have the second. I'd love to hear how you get on in the next few weeks.

MrBsMum Tue 01-Apr-14 10:20:26

Hi Kathy,
The only initial side effects - and these we're supposed to be the worst - were cramps at night in the few days after the first balloon was fitted. It helped to sleep in my right hand side taking the proton pump inhibitors (lanzaprozole in my case) everyday helped a lot. If I started to feel cramps it just weirdness in my stomach after the first few days it was usually because if forgotten to take them. I've had no nasty side effects, like burping. Though you do get odd sensations and your stomach and appetite seem to work differently. My stomach tends to complain when it is completely empty - not pain so much as just being uncomfortable. Also, because you don't eat so much your stomach empties pretty quickly so I find myself eating smaller meals more often. This is fine, and some would say a better way if eating, if you are near to home and/or close to a ready supply of decent food. Try travelling a lot and this becomes somewhat more challenging! I think for me the key lesson is that you need to be sure that you have the head space and circumstances to commit to this properly. The balloon(s) will help you feel fuller (and does help with willpower in that way) but it doesn't stop you feeling hungry if you're on empty. And when you eat, you need to be mindful about the choices you make. I'll check in again in a couple if weeks and let you know how it's going. Good luck with your decision making!

I've wanted to get automated messages to let me know when someone posts on this thread but couldn't figure it out - anyone know how you do that?

MrBsMum Tue 01-Apr-14 10:21:29

Ps. Sorry about the typos!!

Sophiejanehudson Thu 03-Apr-14 11:08:14

Hi there, I thought I would write a response as I've had the Obalon!

I've found it a really great way of losing weight and have been blogging so please feel free to have a read. so far I've lost 12 pounds in 7 weeks which I'm so pleased with. I've been exercising and eating healthily too so as long as you continue to do that once the balloon is removed there isn't any reason why you cant maintain the weight or continue to lose more!

I've found that having the balloon has changed my mind set and has actually retrained the way I think about food.


jools45 Thu 03-Apr-14 15:36:01

Hi All

I have had the treatment & have completed the 12 weeks having had 2 balloons, swallowing the capsule extremely simple & painless & the removal was just as easy.
Side effects were minimal with slight cramping over the first couple of days but no other significant discomfort.
I didn't have a huge amount of weight to lose as my BMI was just over 27 but in the 12 weeks I lost 7lbs which I was very happy with.

cuba2009 Thu 03-Apr-14 16:06:38


I had my first placement in November and the second on January. I am delighted with my results as I've lost a total of 30 lbs. The whole process was quick and simple and I surprised myself at how well I did considering the Christmas period was in between. I had both balloons removed on the same day and that was just as easy.

I've changed my diet and mindset as to how much and what I eat to keep the weight off and no longer feel hungry at odd times during the day and don't feel like snacking either.

nafisah888 Thu 17-Apr-14 10:29:35

Hi Everyone,

I have had Obalon, during the 12 week treatment period I was pleased to see I was actually eating less and didn't get as hungry as I did before. I only had stomach cramps during the first few days but apart from that I could hardly feel I had a balloon inside me, I had two balloon placements and I had a total weight loss of 10lbs which I was very pleased with as my aim was to lose 14lbs, and after having the balloons removed I have lost a further 6lbs by continuing to eat small portion sizes and following the nutritional advise I was given

TheWorldAccordingToJC Thu 17-Apr-14 10:37:22

People are really paying 2k to lose 7 to 12lbs of weight? Wow.

Sadie789 Wed 23-Apr-14 22:17:08

Hi everyone, I thought I'd post as I had the traditional gastric balloon last year and it was brilliant. The first 3 days were hard with lots of vomiting but then it settled down and I lost 2 stones which I have kept off. However i still have two more stones to lose and I was looking at Obalon as it's easier to have put in and seems to have less downtime. Very interested in your experiences with Obalon so I'll be watching this thread closely!!

Tansie Tue 29-Apr-14 10:44:43

TheWorld to be fair, I guess that if you are even considering laying out £2000 for weight loss, everything else must've failed, and 7-12 lbs is a triumph.

I admit my first thoughts were 'that's a lot of cash for the same weight loss I've achieved, 7lbs in 30 days, by 'just' mindful eating' (my initial BMI was 27 to put it in context), but lots of people have real 'psychologies' about food that makes stuff like 'mindful eating' or following prescribed diets more or less impossible.

I'd hope that the need to eat smaller, more regular meals might help someone to re-educate their body so once the balloon is removed, they might go on eating more carefully?

1soppybunny Wed 30-Apr-14 18:11:59

I thought I would share my experience as I have recently completed my 12 week pathway with Obalon which I had done at Spire Clare Park Hospital in Surrey.
Like many on here, I have struggled to lose weight and then maintain weightloss and it has always been slower than I would have liked and very hard going, despite many diets and excercise options tried, so that was my motivation to try Obalon as it sounded so simple.
I swallowed my balloon in January and it was so quick and simple, and I felt full straight after and had no side effects whatsoever.
I decided to manage my calorie intake better with 'My Fitness Pal' App and also look to see what exercise I could add in to use more calories per day, and this has been great for helping me stay on track and decide whether that chocolate bar or cookies were really worth the calories before I succumbed to weakness!
I had much reduced appetite and portions for about the first 5-6 weeks and I modified my eating to be healthier and fill up on more vegetables, pulses, less carbs and low fat with more protein, because I wanted a healthier diet and have noticed how much better this has made me feel.
I lost nearly a stone in the first 4 weeks, and was very pleased and motivated and so decided to continue with just one balloon, (although the recommended pathway for best results is two balloons).
I started Pilates and Aqua Fit a couple of times a week, as well as trying to do more walking and cycling with the family on my non-work days.
By 12 weeks when I had the endoscopy to remove the balloon, I achieved a total weight loss of 2 stone 1lb, or 29lbs, so was over the moon, better than I couold have hoped for and in such a short space of time.
The removal was fine, pretty quick and simple with minimal discomfort and recovery, and I have not felt more hungry or 'empty' at all since as I would have desensitised to the balloon being there by about 6 weeks, but it was the tool to enable me to have the confident, willpower and sticking power to really change my diet and lifestyle, so well worth it!
I have continued with 'My Fitness Pal' and my lifestyle changes, although portion sizes have increased a bit now, so just make sure I fill-up mostly on good stuff and not the wrong foods.
In the 3 weeks since my balloon removal I have lost another 3 lbs and will aim to continue this for the next couple of months before going to maintenance.
Most importantly for my longer-term health, I have gone down 4.5 BMI points back into the healthy range, and have lost >10% of my body fat and am down the the healthy range for this too, which was my ultimate goal. The most rewarding part has been going from a size 16 to a size 10/12, which feels great!!!
Good luck to all who try this, it is not a magic pill, nothing is, but it is a great support tool to use to get you started and change track for the better, with a bit of motivation and willpower, you can reaeducate long-standing eating issues.

Truth123 Mon 05-May-14 21:49:41

I had the oballon ballon in Few months ago I will not advice anyone to go for this it is a waste of money I believe if you want to spend that much to safe n go for the gastric or the temporary one the but not the ballon didn't loose a single weight yes I know some might say I didn't follow instructions but it was only the first day I felt ill or full data after that nothing so u wasted money I won't advice it

nafisah888 Tue 06-May-14 17:20:07

Hi Truth123, I’m surprised Obalon didn’t work for you, I was really happy with my Obalon experience. I did find I had to work with Obalon by adjusting my diet and exercise program and it wasn’t as simple as just swallowing the balloon as I’d hoped, but the change in diet gave me much more energy and made me feel better about myself so I found it quite easy to continue with. You say you didn’t follow instructions, what was it that you didn’t follow?

shellylynn Thu 08-May-14 02:37:16

Just got the balloon yesterday. Felt fine for the first few hours then cramping and nausea began. Today is just as bad. Anyone else fell like this? And for how long? Did you eat the first few days or only have broth? I got my done it Mexico as I live in the USA and our FDA has not cleared it yet. Any advice on how to fell better would be much appreciated. Thank you.

Dipper007 Sat 17-May-14 14:24:07

I had an initial consultation at the Spire hospital in Farnham yesterday and now I need to make a decision whether to go ahead and have the Obalon fitted. I am concerned re going back to over eating after the balloon is removed. What are people's experiences after removal please? Any advice would greatly received.

babefp Mon 19-May-14 17:26:11

I'm in hospital as I write this having my two balloons removed. I've had them in for three months and I have lost 4kilos! My advice is DONT DO IT. The £2,000 you say is just for one balloon, you can have up to three. The first is £2,000 and each subsequent one is £1,000 each. I had two balloons. You will feel full for the first few days they after that, in my experience you will carry on as normal. You'd be better off paying the money to a personal training. I am beyond disappointed. Good luck.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in