Medically Significant Weight Loss Maintenance Two Years After Balloon Removal


Lopez Nava G, Bene L, Kupka T, Buzga M,  Machytka E


Background: The Spatz Adjustable Balloon System was developed to provide an adjustable intragastric balloon approved for 1 year implantation. Weight loss results > 20 kg/year have been reported in the literature. The question is whether treatment with an intragastric balloon also leads to better weight loss maintenance after balloon removal. A prospective study on the BIB balloon has reported maintenance of > 10% weight loss in 25% of patients for up to 2.5 years after BIB balloon removal.

Methods: 79 patients from 3 centers who were implanted with the Spatz Adjustable Balloon for 1 year were contacted and asked to provide their weight 1 year and 2 years post balloon extraction. Net weight changes were recorded, and % weight loss was calculated based on weight prior to balloon implantation. Net weight loss > 10% was considered successful weight maintenance.

Results: 70 of the 79 patients contacted (88.6%) were responsive in providing their weight data. The group’s data at the original implantation was as follows: mean weight 120.3 kg (80-180); mean BMI 38.8 (30-65). At the time of balloon extraction (12 months) the group’s mean weight loss was 24 kg with a 23.8 % weight loss.  All of the 70 patients had reached at least 12 months post Spatz balloon extraction. Fifty three of the seventy (75.7%) retained at least 10% weight loss at 1 year post balloon extraction. 34 of the 70 patients had reached 2 years post extraction, and 26 (76.4%) retained at least 10% weight loss. The group’s mean weight change was +6.7 kg at 1 year and +3.4 kg at 2 years after balloon extraction.

Conclusions: The maintenance of > 10% Weight loss at 1 year and 2 years after Spatz Adjustable Balloon extraction has been retrospectively documented in 75.7% and 76.4% of patients, respectively. This study is limited by its retrospective review and the small numbers in year 2 and requires prospective review to confirm these findings. Nonetheless, it suggests a long term benefit to longer implantation time and/or adjustable balloon function and warrants further study.