All about Allurion Ballon

Written by: Mr Anupam Dixit
Edited by: Aoife Maguire

As people strive to lose weight, they are looking for alternative methods in order to do so. One of these options is allurion balloon, an an innovative, swallowable gastric balloon used to maintain weight loss. Leading consultant upper gastrointestinal and laparoscopic surgeon Mr Anupam Dixit explains more about this weight loss method, including its benefits, and what happens following treatment.



What is the Allurion Balloon and how does it compare to traditional weight loss methods?


The Allurion Balloon represents a significant advancement in medical technology. Unlike traditional balloons that required insertion through endoscopy, often under enhanced sedation, this innovative device, developed in the United States, resembles a capsule attached to a small thread or catheter.


The patient simply swallows the capsule in the x-ray suite. Using x-ray confirmation, we confirm its position before connecting the catheter to half a litre of saline. The capsule is inflated using this saline and after another x-ray confirmation, we remove the catheter. This streamlined process eliminates the need for endoscopy, sedation, anaesthesia, or throat spray, allowing patients to leave the centre within 15 to 20 minutes.


What are the main risks and benefits of Allurion Balloon?


The main benefit is, of course weight loss. Long-term studies have demonstrated a 10 to 15 per cent reduction in total body weight over the course of the programme. This is facilitated by the inclusion of intelligent scales and the opportunity for patients to engage with a dietician who can monitor their progress (in terms of weight loss) through these scales. Our aim is to promote sustained weight loss, which is the fundamental goal of this programme.  


As for side effects, patients may experience nausea during the initial two to three days, and vomiting is not uncommon. Additionally, there have been isolated cases of intolerance leading to premature removal of the balloon.


How does the Aallurion Balloon work, and what happens following treatment?


The balloon initially works by occupying the stomach, making the patient feel full. However, over the first week or so, the stomach may adapt to its presence. At this point, patients can resume normal drinking habits and, with guidance from a dietician, gradually introduce small amounts of food. After a few weeks, supervised by nutritionists or dieticians, patients often experience behavioural and psychological shifts.


This long-term aspect is crucial as the balloon remains in the stomach for four months before naturally puncturing itself, eliminating the need for endoscopic removal typical of conventional balloons. Through interactions with the balloon and dietician, patients foster lasting behavioural changes that positively influence their eating habits, aligning with the programme's objectives.


What lifestyle changes are needed to support the effectiveness of the Allurion Balloon for weight loss?


Lifestyle changes are essential to maintain the effectiveness of the balloon. After undergoing balloon insertion, patients are provided with a dietary package, which includes different stages of the diet. We encourage patients to exercise as much as possible after the first few days, so that the patient establishes a good routine. Finally, as previously mentioned, fostering behavioural and psychological changes is pivotal, facilitated by the balloon's presence in the stomach. After undergoing the balloon procedure, patients typically lose 10-15% of their body weight, and the majority manage to sustain this weight loss long-term.




If you are considering Allurion Balloon and would like to book a consultation with Mr Dixit, simply visit his Top Doctors profile today

By Mr Anupam Dixit

Mr Anupam Dixit is an accomplished consultant upper gastrointestinal and laparoscopic surgeon with over 25 years of experience, based in Worthing and Brighton. Mr Dixit specialises in laparoscopic (keyhole) gastrointestinal and hernia surgery, while focusing primarily on weight loss surgery (sleeve gastrectomy), gallbladder surgery as well as Allurion balloons.  

Mr Dixit gained his primary medical qualification in 1997 and went on to undertake surgical training in London and Belgium. He gained fellowship with the Royal College of Surgeons and furthered his experience while consulting at the Homerton Hospital Bariatric Unit. Upon completion of his training in 2017, Mr Dixit was appointed Consultant General Surgeon and has since centred his practice around appropriate care and comprehensive holistic assessment.

Mr Dxit believes in a holistic approach towards patient care through comprehensive assessment, appropriate surgery, aftercare and support.
He has published and presented his work nationally and internationally on topics in bariatric and upper GI surgery. He is a member of a number of professional organisations, including the Association of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland, the British Obesity & Metabolic Surgery Society (BOMSS), and the International Federation for Surgery of Obesity (IFSO). 

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