I’ve had both the Orbera balloon and then the subsequent ESG surgery permanently done. I am 5’3 and was about 225lbs at my heaviest before the balloon. I was going through a rough patch between a divorce and taking care of the kids. With my focus on the children and no help, I had a hard time taking care of myself. I put my kids first and worked to ensure their quality of life and education was maintained. My health started to deteriorate, which affected my weight and my back. I ended up becoming bed ridden on most days off from work from the pain of my weight.
I thought taking this step would fix everything. You should know that this typically does not work as it takes both the surgery and a mind frame change for it to work. It was hard to acknowledge the reality of my situation at that time because I was in denial. I denied that food was a comfort and that my health was spiraling out of control because I painted a beautiful picture of my life to my friends, family and colleagues. Lose weight and avoid back surgery. I lost weight from the Orbera balloon WITHOUT exercising. I COULDN’T exercise because of my back pain even after the weight loss. In the end, I underwent a lower back spinal fusion surgery. Losing the weight in the beginning before the back surgery cut my recovery time in half and physical therapy was not as difficult as it could have been at my previous overweight circumstances.
Looking back on it, I should have done ESG instead because it is essentially the same result as the Orbera balloon but more permanent. I was able to maintain the lifestyle with a drastic mind frame change because you can still EAT PAST the balloon and the ESG, defeating your purpose for the surgery, stretching your stomach and right back to where you were initially. The recovery was so easy and there was not any cutting involved. I am currently 127Lbs…and my quality of life and my children’s (because it directly affects them as well) has been changed for the best.
Overall, Dr. Ibegbu and his staff were extremely accommodating, professional and made me feel like I was a human being instead of a number. They answered my questions, was patient, and was there each step of the way. You also work with a very patient, caring but honest and firm dietitian. I did interview other places, but Dr. Ibegbu and his staff were by far the kindest to me. That shows how personal they make you feel and comfortable. They provide the service but ultimately it is YOU that has to make sure that you are doing what you have to do to change your quality of life. I hope this very personal experience helps somebody. Invest in yourself, you deserve so much more.