Dr. Shieh Talks About Obalon


Dr. Moses Shieh: My Name is Dr Moses Shieh, I'm a bariatric surgeon here in Fort Myers, Florida. And I've been doing a weight loss surgery, weight loss procedures, even correcting weight loss procedures since about 2005. And then when Obalon came out, it came out in the sense of, now you've really created a sense of ease for the patient to get through that process of seeing the doctor and then swallowing a pill. I mean, how simple is that concept? And so, it does not take away diet, proper exercise, nutritional counseling. All those things are just as important with any surgical patient that wants to do weight loss. But what it does is it provides a tool for the patients that instead of needing to lose 200 pounds, now we're talking to patients that need to lose 20, to 30, or 40 pounds. So, that makes a big difference. I'm just as human as everyone else. But I have high cholesterol. I'm on multiple medications for it. But 10 to 15 pounds would also be helpful. I'm on that treadmill as well.

I get frustrated when I'm not seeing that scale move the direction that I want to see it move. And so if there's a way that I can feel what my patients are feeling, and I know it's safe, and it's a benefit to me, let's give it a shot. So the side effects are minimal. The side effects to me were... I actually have a picture of me eating a salad and spaghetti right after my balloon placement. I was fine. And so, of course I felt full fast, but I was fine. And so, really minimal side effects. Because a typical weight loss surgery patient, based upon their insurance requirements, and their health risk may take three to six months before they even get to a surgeon by their first consult. Versus with Obalon, depending on what the medical history of the patient is with, if there's any what we call contra indications most patients can be swallowing the balloon within a week, or less depending on that process.

So what it does is not only does it allow the practitioner to discuss weight loss, discuss their overweight or obesity, but then say, hey, here's a treatment that we can start right away. As of Tuesday, I just reviewed the data for our balloon number three swallows. So we have some patients that have lost over 50 pounds within the first two balloons. So, knowing that they're getting their third balloon, they're ecstatic.