Vive Bariatrics

Common Myths and Misconceptions About the Gastric Balloon

The gastric balloon is a popular non-surgical weight loss treatment that has helped many people achieve their weight loss goals. However, numerous myths and misconceptions surround this procedure, causing confusion and hesitation. At VIVE Bariatrics, we believe in providing accurate information to help you make informed decisions about your health. In this article, we will debunk some of the most common myths and misconceptions about the gastric balloon.

Myth 1: The Gastric Balloon Is a Permanent Solution

Reality: Temporary Treatment

One of the most common misconceptions is that the gastric balloon offers a permanent solution for weight loss. In reality, the gastric balloon is a temporary device that doctors typically remove after six months. It is designed to kick-start your weight loss journey and help you develop healthier eating habits during its placement.

Myth 2: The Procedure Is Extremely Painful

Reality: Minimally Invasive and Comfortable

Many people fear that the gastric balloon procedure is painful. However, it is a minimally invasive procedure performed under sedation. Most patients experience only mild discomfort and can return to their normal activities within a few days.

Myth 3: The Gastric Balloon Will Make You Lose Weight Without Any Effort

Reality: Requires Commitment and Lifestyle Changes

While the gastric balloon can significantly aid in weight loss, it is not a magic solution. Patients must commit to making lifestyle changes, including following a healthy diet and engaging in regular physical activity, to achieve and maintain weight loss. The balloon helps by promoting a feeling of fullness, making it easier to reduce food intake.

Myth 4: The Gastric Balloon Is Only for Severely Obese Individuals

Reality: Suitable for a Range of BMIs

Another common misconception is that the gastric balloon suits only individuals with severe obesity. In fact, the gastric balloon is designed for individuals with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30-40 who have not achieved significant weight loss through diet and exercise alone. It can be a valuable tool for those looking to lose a moderate amount of weight and improve their health.

Myth 5: You Can’t Eat Anything with a Gastric Balloon

Reality: Balanced Diet Is Encouraged

Some believe that having a gastric balloon means you can’t enjoy your favorite foods anymore. While you need to make dietary changes, it doesn’t mean you can’t eat anything. The focus is on eating smaller, healthier portions and avoiding high-calorie, sugary, and fatty foods. A balanced diet that includes a variety of foods ensures you get the necessary nutrients.

Myth 6: The Gastric Balloon Is Unsafe

Reality: Proven to Be Safe and Effective

Extensive studies have shown that this procedure is a safe and effective weight loss option for many individuals. As with any medical procedure, there are risks, but serious complications are rare. Most patients experience only mild side effects, such as nausea or discomfort, which typically subside within a few days.

Myth 7: Results Are Not Long-Lasting

Reality: Long-Lasting Results with Commitment

While the gastric balloon is a temporary device, the weight loss results can be long-lasting if you commit to maintaining healthy lifestyle habits after removing the balloon. The initial weight loss achieved with the balloon can provide the motivation needed to continue with healthy eating and regular exercise.

Myth 8: The Gastric Balloon Can Pop Inside the Stomach

Reality: Designed to Be Durable

Durable materials make up the gastric balloon, designed to withstand the acidic environment of the stomach. While rare, if the balloon deflates, it typically does not cause an emergency. The blue dye in the saline solution changes the color of your urine, alerting you to the issue. Your doctor can then safely remove the balloon.

Myth 9: The Procedure Is Not Covered by Insurance

Reality: Insurance Coverage Varies

While coverage for this procedure can vary by insurance provider, many insurance plans do cover weight loss treatments, including the gastric balloon, if you meet certain criteria. Check with your insurance provider to see if your plan covers the procedure.

Myth 10: Anyone Can Get a Gastric Balloon

Reality: Specific Eligibility Criteria

Not everyone is a candidate for the gastric balloon. Suitable candidates typically have a BMI of 30-40, have struggled to lose weight through diet and exercise alone, and do not have any medical conditions that would contraindicate the procedure. A thorough consultation with your doctor at VIVE Bariatrics will determine if the gastric balloon is the right option for you.


Understanding the facts about the gastric balloon can help you make an informed decision about your weight loss journey. At VIVE Bariatrics, we dedicate ourselves to providing accurate information and personalized care to help you achieve your health goals.. If you’re considering a gastric balloon, schedule a consultation with our expert team to learn more about this effective weight loss option.