ReShape Balloon Procedure Vs. Gastric Bypass or Gastric Sleeve

ReShape Balloon Procedure Vs. Gastric Bypass or Gastric Sleeve

In the past, the Gastric Bypass operation has demonstrated excellent weight loss for almost all patients. Its’ reliability has made the Gastric Bypass the Gold Standard weight loss surgery in the United States. The Gastric Sleeve operation has also demonstrated excellent weight loss for almost all patients. Its ability to produce very good weight loss with no implantation of a foreign body, and the ability to avoid some of the complications related to the rearrangement of the intestinal tract as seen with the gastric bypass makes the Gastric Sleeve a very attractive option for weight loss surgery. However, now the newly FDA approved ReShape Balloon Procedure may be the best option for weight loss because it’s a non-surgical procedure. To get a better understanding, let’s compare these three procedures to see which one may be the best option for you or your loved ones.

Gastic Bypass Surgery

The primary means by which the Gastric Bypass operation works is by restricting the amount of food that can be eaten at a single meal. The small gastric pouch varies somewhere between 15 and 30 ccs in size. This amounts to only a few ounces of solid food at a time. Eating too much volume will produce discomfort and eventually vomiting, both of which reinforce eating small amounts of food slowly.

In addition, because the first part of the small intestine (duodenum) is bypassed, along with the distal stomach, the digestive juice does not reach the food until the connection at the “Y”. This has particular importance for sugar intake, because sugars require enzymes from the pancreas to be broken down for absorption. A high concentration of sugars in the small intestine, which are, not absorbed lead to the Dumping Syndrome. This is a combination of flushing, cramping and diarrhea, often as a severe brief episode. Sugar intake, particularly processed sugars, must be restricted after Gastric Bypass or the patient will suffer from the Dumping Syndrome.

Finally, since no food will pass through the distal stomach and proximal intestine there is very little stimulation for the production of most intestinal hormones. Intestinal Hormones are chemicals produced by the intestinal tract that are excreted into the blood stream and cause effects remote from the intestine (e.g. insulin). Some of the hormones have an effect on how the brain perceives hunger. For example, Graylin, an Intestinal Hormone thought to drive hunger, stays at a very low level after Gastric Bypass. As a result, most patients do not suffer wide swings in hunger shortly after eating, and the drive to eat is generally diminished.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery

The primary means by which the Gastric Sleeve operation works is by removing the storage capacity of the stomach. Because of this the patient has a subjective feeling of fullness with a much smaller amount of food. This means that he/she can more easily control his/her hunger and stop eating sooner. The new capacity of the narrower stomach is hard to measure but likely is between 4 and 8 ounces.


Several studies on the amount of time it takes the new stomach to empty are somewhat in conflict, and therefore, the stomach transit time is of doubtful importance. A slower transit time would improve the feeing of fullness (satiety), but a faster transit time could help generate several intestinal hormones that have a negative affect on hunger, specifically PYY and PIP. These are generated in the duodenum the first part of the small intestine and their action is not yet well understood.

One intestinal hormone shown to be favorably affected by the gastric sleeve operation is Ghrelin. This is produced in the part of the stomach that is removed, and therefore, drops to a low level in the bloodstream after the operation. Ghrelin is important for how the brain perceives hunger, and low levels cause the patient to be less hungry  turning down the drive to take in too many calories.

ReShape Balloon NonSurgical Procedure 

With this new non-surgical procedure, Dr. Marvin will gently insert the balloons through your mouth (endoscopically), with no incisions or scars. Unlike weight loss surgeries,  ReShape  is not a permanent implant and does not permanently reroute your digestive system. Insertion of the balloons is completed in about 20 minutes, with no hospital stay required. You can get in and out and on your way to weight loss. Only the ReShape Procedure places two connected, medical-grade and saline-filled balloons inside your stomach for six months. The balloons take up room in your stomach so there’s less space for food and you feel satisfied longer.The ReShape Dual Balloon has the capacity to hold more saline than any single balloon, taking up more space in your stomach. The dual balloon system was also designed to improve safety and more comfortably conform to the shape of your stomach.

The Gastric Balloon is a low risk procedure. Complications are rare and almost never life threatening. There is a period of adjustment after balloon placement where the patient’s system becomes accustomed to the presence of the balloon. Mild dehydration can occur in a minority of patients. ReShape combines the portion-controlling benefits of the balloons with comprehensive coaching to change your eating habits, enhance your physical fitness, and help you adopt a healthy lifestyle that supports long-term success. While the balloons are inside your stomach, you will meet monthly with coaches and receive personalized nutrition, fitness, and behavior guidance to help maximize your success. After the balloons are removed, you will continue to meet with your coaching team to make sure that you maintain your healthy lifestyle to reach your goals. With ongoing coaching support, most patients maintain their weight loss or continue to lose weight.

Please visit or call 713-993-7124 to learn more about the ReShape Procedure or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Marvin at Houston Surgical Specialists.




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