A new weight loss device which promises surgical results without the surgery has been approved for use in Australia.
The Elipse gastric balloon is a capsule with a tiny tube attached to it which is swallowed by a patient who wants to shed unwanted kilos.
Watch the video above for more on the Elipse
Once in the stomach, it’s filled with saline water and expands to the size of a grapefruit before the tube is removed.
This creates a feeling of fullness, thereby reducing food intake and can result in a loss of up to 10-15 per cent of body weight in about four months.
After 16 weeks, the balloon automatically opens itself and is passed naturally when the patient goes to the toilet.
Unlike a gastric band, the Elipse pill does not require risky surgery.
And at $5,000 to $6,000, it is only a fraction of the price.
Weight loss surgeon Dr George Balalis, who inserted an Elipse into Australia’s first patient last week, said the device was “great for people who either don’t qualify for surgery or don’t want surgery.”
To be eligible for the device you must record a BMI of 27-40, whereas to have a gastric band inserted you must have a BMI of at least 35 with a co-morbidity.
“This device provides you with a tool to change your lifestyle and to improve your habits and that four month period gives you that opportunity to do so,” Dr Balalis explained on Sunrise.
“After four months the device opens up and you pass it naturally – most patients don’t realise that’s happened.”
People who are interested in the Elipse are urged to speak to their GP.