New Way to Lose Weight? - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

New Way to Lose Weight?

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The makers of a pill say it can help overweight and obese patients lose up to 20 pounds in three months.

The patient swallows a capsule with a balloon inside and gastric surgeons inflate it to make someone feel full so they eat less. "The balloon will act to educate them about portion size and retrain their brain and their mindset a little," says gastric surgeon Sally Norton.

Helene Fleckney lost 19 pounds during the clinical trial in England. "I'm delighted with that - it's made me feel so much better in myself."

More than 60% of adults in England are overweight or obese; health experts warn the balloon is not a magic pill.

"When they take the balloons out, what happens is the stomach hasn't shrunk, so you're left with the same size stomach or possibly even bigger than there was beforehand," says Tim Bean.

Manufacturers say the balloon is designed as a jumpstart to a weight loss program. In the first few days, patients may experience nausea and vomiting.

The balloon is also not a permanent fix - months after treatment, it is deflated and removed.

Doctors say people may need up to three balloons over months of treatment. A two-balloon pill procedure costs about $5,000. The pill is still being tested here in the U.S.

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