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Weight loss is a deeply personal and sometimes challenging journey. At Digestive Care Specialists and The Silhouette Clinic, with locations in Virginia and Maryland, we prioritize your health and work together with you to find the best solution to meet your weight loss goals. One such innovative option we offer is the gastric balloon, a non-surgical method that has helped many individuals in our community on their way to a healthier life.

What is a Gastric Balloon?

A gastric balloon, also known as an intragastric balloon, is a soft, saline-filled device placed in the stomach. Its purpose is to partially fill the stomach, allowing patients to feel full more quickly and reduce food intake. The balloon is temporarily inserted and usually remains in place for six to eight months, during which time it can assist in controlling appetite and portion size.

How is the Gastric Balloon Inserted?

The procedure is minimally invasive and doesn’t require surgery. It involves the following steps:

1. Consultation: We’ll discuss your weight loss goals and medical history to determine if the gastric balloon is the right option for you.
2. Procedure: Performed under sedation (you are asleep but breathing on your own), a thin tube with a camera (endoscope) is passed down your throat into your stomach. The deflated balloon is then inserted through the tube.
3. Inflation: Once inside the stomach, the balloon is filled with saline until it reaches the desired size. The balloon size is tailored to your body and needs.
4. Recovery: You’ll be monitored for a short period before going home, with a detailed plan and support for the weeks and months ahead.

Benefits of the Gastric Balloon

– Non-Surgical: Unlike other weight loss procedures, a gastric balloon doesn’t require incisions or permanent changes to the digestive system.
– Temporary: The balloon is usually removed after six or eight months, providing a temporary aid to help you establish better eating habits.
– Personalized Support: At The Silhouette Clinic in Virginia and Maryland, our team provides ongoing support, including dietary guidance and lifestyle counseling.
– Effective Weight Loss: Many individuals achieve significant weight loss during the time the balloon is in place, leading to long-term lifestyle changes.

Gastric Balloon Risks and Considerations

While the gastric balloon is a well-tolerated procedure, it’s essential to be aware of potential risks and side effects. We take every precaution to minimize these risks and will provide detailed information during your consultation.

Who is a Candidate for the Gastric Balloon?

The gastric balloon may be suitable for patients who are not able to lose weight with diet and exercise alone and who are willing to commit to the weight loss program. Patients who suffer from obesity defined as a BMI of 30 and above are candidates for the gastric balloon. Patients who suffer from overweight, defined as a BMI above 25 but who also suffer from a weight-related medical condition may be candidates for the gastric balloon. However,the gastric balloon is not a one-size-fits-all solution, and careful evaluation is required.

Life After the Gastric Balloon

Once the balloon is removed, the journey is far from over. Continued commitment to healthy eating habits and regular exercise is vital. We’ll remain by your side, offering ongoing support and guidance.


Let’s take a closer look at two of the most popular gastric balloons available: the Orbera Balloon and the Spatz3 Balloon. Both options have been utilized by patients in Virginia and Maryland at The Silhouette Clinic, offering unique advantages.




Orbera Balloon

Orbera balloon held in hand


The Orbera Balloon is a soft silicone balloon filled with a saline solution. As a well-established option in the field of gastric balloons, it has been used worldwide to aid in weight loss.

Orbera Balloon Procedure

Insertion of the Orbera Balloon follows the standard gastric balloon procedure:
1.  Insertion: The deflated balloon is inserted into the stomach through an endoscope.
2.  Inflation: The balloon is inflated with saline, partially filling the stomach.
3. Removal: Usually removed after six months, aligning with a tailored diet and exercise program.

Orbera Balloon Benefits

– Proven Track Record: Orbera has been used in over 80 countries, with clinical trials supporting its efficacy.
– Low-risk balloon: The Orbera gastric balloon is soft without associated catheters, making it less likely to cause gastric ulcerations.
– Comprehensive Program: Often accompanied by a 12-month aftercare program focusing on diet and lifestyle changes.


– Temporary Solution: Designed for short-term use, usually six months.
– Possible Side Effects: The Orbera gastric balloon may cause nausea and discomfort initially, which generally resolve within a week.


Spatz3 Balloon

Spatz3 balloon


The Spatz3 Balloon is a unique adjustable gastric balloon. Unlike other balloons, it offers the ability to adjust its volume during the treatment period, providing an adaptable approach.

Sptaz3 Balloon Procedure

1. Insertion: Similar to the Orbera balloon, the Spatz3 is inserted deflated, and then inflated with saline.
2. Adjustment: A unique feature, the volume can be adjusted without removing the balloon, allowing customization throughout the treatment.
3. Removal: Generally removed after eight months, longer than most other balloons.

Spatz3 Balloon Benefits

– Adjustable: The ability to adjust the size allows for personalized treatment and may reduce side effects.
– Extended Treatment Period: Designed for use up to 8 months in the US (12 months outside the US), potentially leading to more significant weight loss.
– Flexible Approach: Adjustments can align with the patient’s progress and comfort.


– Requires Monitoring: Regular check-ups are essential to make the necessary adjustments.
– Potential Side Effects: Similar to other gastric balloons, some initial discomfort or nausea may occur with the Spatz3 gastric balloon.


Both the Orbera balloon and Spatz3 balloon offer innovative approaches to non-surgical weight loss. The Orbera Balloon is praised for its proven success and global recognition, while the Spatz3 Balloon’s adjustability sets it apart as a flexible option.



Weight loss is a multi-faceted journey that requires dedication, support, and sometimes a little extra help. The gastric balloon at Digestive Care Specialists and The Silhouette Clinic in Virginia and Maryland offers a non-surgical, personalized approach to assist you in achieving your weight loss goals.

If you’re ready to take the next step towards a healthier and happier you, please contact us for a consultation at one of our convenient locations in Virginia and Maryland. We look forward to being part of your transformation. At The Silhouette Clinic, our professional team in Virginia and Maryland will work with you to determine the most suitable gastric balloon for your unique needs, ensuring the safest and most effective path towards a healthier you.

If you have more specific questions or require additional information about these or other options at The Silhouette Clinic, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re here to support you on your weight loss journey.

Gastric Balloon Before and After Pictures

A picture is worth a thousand words! Here are some of our patients’ gastric balloon before and after pictures. You can see more on our success stories page.

Spatz Before 2



Spatz after pic


Spatz after pic


Gastric Balloon FAQs


What is the gastric balloon price?

The gastric balloon price varies depending on where it is placed and what is included in the gastric balloon for weight loss package. The Orbera balloon price varies between $6,500 and $7,500. The Spatz3 balloon price is similar to the Orbera balloon, but additional costs may be incurred if there is a need for additional procedures for adjustment of the balloon size.

What is the gastric balloon diet like?

After the gastric balloon placement, you will be instructed to drink clear liquids for a couple of days. You can then advance your diet to a full liquid diet for 1 week then to a soft diet for 1 week then to a regular consistency diet.

How much weight can I lose with the gastric balloon?

Most patients can expect to lose an average of 10% to 15% of their weight with the gastric balloon. Most patients lose more weight initially, but some weight regain may occur after removing the balloon. The weight loss is variable and is dependent on multiple factors, particularly modifying your behavior and changing your diet and engaging in regular exercise.

How long can the gastric balloon remain in my stomach?

The Orbera balloon can be left in the stomach for 6 months, while the Spatz3 gastric balloon FDA approval allowed for it to be kept in the stomach for 8 months.