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Orbera Balloon booked in next week! Nervous, excited, anxious! Any tips would be greatly appreciated!



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Hi all,

I am booked to get the Orbera inserted next week and I have mixed emotions! Excited, nervous, anxious!!

I would love to hear from you and if you have any tips for me pre and post insertion. What has worked best for you?

I'm trying to equip myself with enough knowledge to go into this with as much info as possible.

Thanks for your time and support!

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How exciting!! And I know exactly how you're feeling. :-) I've done a number of posts on this subject. If you check out my profile, you will see them all there (including a references list and my replies the other people who had similar questions). I've included one of my early posts below with some updated info. I would also add that it seems a lot of people suffer from constipation at first so you might want to start taking Miralax or colace before your procedure. Also, Popsicles really helped me those first few days. Lastly, keep in mind that the balloon is a tool, not a solution. I still count calories and Protein religiously. You could easily not lose - or even gain - with the balloon if you're not diligent with your diet. Good luck and please keep us posted!! Cheers! :-)

WOW!! This thread had been incredibly helpful. Thank you all for sharing your experiences. After reading this and various things elsewhere, I have come up with the following list to help me prepare for my alien insertion next week:

1. Ask for an anti-nausea patch. One person got it before they were even knocked out, others immediately after and others days later. In all cases it sounds like it helped ... a lot. (Actually, except for one, which resulted in hives ... talk about adding insult to injury!)

2. Take your meds. Even before your procedure and/or if you're feeling better, take them (at least the first few days) to prevent getting sick.

3. Follow the 20x4 rule. No liquids 20 minutes before eating or for at least 20 minutes after, chew each bite 20 times and take 20 minutes to complete a meal. (I have no problem with limited fluids with food.)

4. 20-30 minutes after a meal, drink Water to rinse the balloon and prevent bad breath. (I've heard/read mixed reviews about carbonated beverages - some people say they cleanse the balloon better, but most seem to say that they make you feel miserable ... I actually enjoy a tiny ginger ale on occasion and it doesn't bother me.)

5. Protein and hydration are essential to being/feeling healthy. (Make sure you're getting enough calories and protein - too few of either and you will stall and/or lose muscle.)

6. Stay with liquids only for at least a week or two to help with the adjustment and to prevent getting sick. (I actually only needed to for about 4-5 days.)

7. Eat dinner early and, ideally, stick with a liquid dinner to prevent all sorts of discomfort. (I don't have trouble no matter when I eat.)

8. Invest in barf bags (done!). :-) Hopefully you won't need them, but they are worth it for the peace of mind alone. (Was SO glad I had them the first few days!!)

9. When the balloon feels uncomfortable, sleep on your left side and/or try downward dog to get it re-positioned.

10. sleep with your head elevated? I have not read much about that, but assume it might help with the reflux. Just to be safe, I ordered a wedge pillow. (Used the wedge for about a week - definitely helped.)

11. It ain't over until it's over. Even when you start feeling better, you still may have bad days. So never take it for granted, stay on the food program and continue to take your meds.

12. And last but not least, prepare. Stock the kitchen with Protein drinks and soft foods, invest in the items mentioned above early so that you have them if you need them, make sure you have Vitamins (and tum?) on hand, etc.. (Greek yogurt has been a staple for me, as have eggs, Organic Fuel Protein Drinks and nut butters.)

Do you agree? Have I missed anything? Any feedback would be most appreciated.

BTW has anyone tried Yonanas? It's a machine that instantly makes sorbet out of just fruit. A friend of mine has it (she got it after several of her friends got it) and she loves it ... says it is delicious! She usually just uses bananas and berries, but you can also use yogurt and other ingredients. I was wondering if that might not be a good way to get in some healthy carbs that are nice and soft. :-)

One last thing - do your balloons have the blue dye in them? If so, what type of balloon do you have? Some people get it and some don't ... I'm curious about your thoughts on that, too.

Thanks again and best of luck to you all!!

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Thanks so much for all these brilliant tips!!

What is the deal with coffee? I have 2-3 cups a day, can I keep this up or should I start weaning?

Thanks

Elle

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Thanks so much for all these brilliant tips!!

What is the deal with coffee? I have 2-3 cups a day, can I keep this up or should I start weaning?

Thanks

Elle

I'm not s coffee drinker so I don't recall specifically, but I think I've read others saying that they can't tolerate it. Having said that, I heard the same about Pasta, lettuce and carbonation, and yet I have all of those regularly. I've discovered that the best thing is to try everything yourself and see how it makes you feel. Just ease into them and don't do them all at the same time.

For example, Pasta was one of my early go to foods and I never had any trouble with it. Once I was ok with simpler soft foods that were a little more bland, I tried a frozen spaghetti and meatballs. It was a good transitional food. The pasta in those is fairly mushy and easy to digest, and the meatballs provide a decent dose of Protein. Since they are portion controlled, they are typically only 350-450 calories each. I continue to keep them handy for a quick and easy meal. So that worked for me, but may not for others.

Once you are past that first week or so, you may want to try a little coffee and see how you feel before having an entire cup or more each day. But, then again, after not having it for a week, maybe you won't want/need it anymore, or maybe you will decide to switch to something like tea. :-) Good luck!

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Good luck! I'm having mine on Tuesday and am so nervous! I've gotten all the different foods,liquids, and medications! I also found a medication time chart on google to help me keep track of my meds!

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Happy to see other people out there getting the procedure! Please do share your experiences as it helps others (considering) getting the balloon. There was not much info out there when I did it (and probably still is not much now), so forums like this help a lot! :-) Best wishes to you both!!

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Good luck to us both. Thanks for the great advice. What medication did you take before procedure?

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Good luck to us both. Thanks for the great advice. What medication did you take before procedure?

I'm having to take omeprazole, and the nausea patch before procedure, then more after- as needed for nausea and stomach issues.

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I was the same as @xingmaltese. I didn't take a stool softener (or Fiber pill/drink) before and immediately after, but I would highly recommend it. :-) That first week you're not taking much Fiber in (if any) and you might even struggle to get enough Fluid in ... yet you are getting some Protein in. So things could get, uh, challenging. An ounce of prevention ... ;-)

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Thanks I just bought some things to help with the constipation.

I was wondering if you could tell me what the initial feeling is like? Is it just a feeling of fullness or is there more to it? Can you 'feel' the balloon? Sorry for these questions, I'm just trying to prepare myself!

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Hmm ... Good question. I didn't feel anything at first. When I woke up, I pretty much felt normal. It was not until the drive home that I started feeling queasy, but even that was not bad and I could not feel the balloon. It was not until later that day that I could really tell something was there. Even then it felt more like a tummy ache than an object. I noticed it the most when I laid down, and that just felt like some pressure in certain positions (the wedge pillow helped). I probably noticed it most day 2 and for a week or two after, then the sensation started to subside.

Sometimes I still feel pressure, but I don't feel it often now, and it's easier to get comfortable when I lay down (I used to only be able to sleep on my left, but now I sleep on both sides and my back). To me it feels more than pressure than an object ... it's hard to describe. I guess it's fullness? But it's a little different. However a lot of people say they feel "the balloon".

I have to tell you, there was a day or so there when I thought, what have I done? But fortunately that passed quickly. :-) I've also read about a lot of people who've had it worse than I have, and a lot of people who have had it better. Given that and the statistics from the study, I think I'm pretty much a middle of the road case. I hoped for at least that, so I'm happy. But I would never encourage someone to do it or not to do it ... it's just too personal of a decision. Instead I encourage people to do the research so that they can make an informed decision - the decision that's best for them.

Gosh, I don't think I helped much - lol - sorry about that! But I hope it at least helped to provide some insight. Best of luck to you!! :-)

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Thanks so much for your amazing response, it is exactly what I needed to hear. I will also post on my experience so everyone can compare. I have just called the Dr. and he does not give any medication pre-op! Uh oh!

I will just have to trust him and see how I go!

Best of luck xingmaltese! I wish you a quick recovery and the results you desire! Let us know how it goes!

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@@athenean - does he at least put the patch on you before he does the procedure and give you the scripts at that time? You're going to need them ... sure would be nice if he hooked you up in advance. I was given prescription Prilosec to take a week in advance but it's the same dosage as over the counter (OTC). You might want to ask him if you can start taking the OTC version beforehand to reduce possible acid issues. Good luck!!

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