The gastric balloon procedure is very safe, but as with any procedure, there is a chance of experiencing a complication and no matter how small the risk, we need to make you aware.
We are regularly asked whether the Intragastric balloon can burst and although we have to make you aware that this is a possibility, the risk is very small.
Gastric balloons, typically made of soft and flexible materials, are designed to be placed within the stomach temporarily. By occupying space in the stomach, they create a feeling of fullness, helping individuals reduce their food intake and promote weight loss. While gastric balloons offer a less invasive alternative to surgery, concerns about their integrity and potential for bursting persist.
Balloon rupture can occur due to various factors, including excessive pressure, overinflation, or inherent weaknesses in the balloon material. Although rare, when a gastric balloon bursts, it poses potential risks to the patient’s health and may require immediate medical attention.
As a precaution, when the balloon is filled at implantation, a harmless methylene blue dye is added so you experience green coloured urine, this would indicate a rupture and a removal procedure would be arranged by your health professional.
Bowel obstruction and perforation are the most significant concerns if your balloon bursts. Symptoms such as severe abdominal pain, vomiting, or difficulty swallowing should never be ignored, as they may indicate a burst balloon. Other potential risks include allergic reactions, acid reflux, and aspiration pneumonia, although these are less common.