It's pretty amazing, the lengths to which people will go, just to lose a bit of extra weight. Diet pills, lipo, lap-band surgery. Some opt to have their jaw wired shut.
Now, folks in the states are driving north, way north, to Canada, to have liquid-filled balloons surgically implanted into their gut, for a feeling of 'round-the-clock fullness. (Canada, because these diet balloons have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in the United States.)
The FDA sites the high risk/low reward odds and limited availability of long-term studies as reasons for its reluctance to approve of the procedure. Risks include ulcers, infections, and having the balloon deflate and tangle in your intestines, or puncture your abdomen, which can be life threatening. All this, for a not-so-extreme 13-34lb (on average) weight loss.
The New York Times reports:
"Successful weight loss with the intragastric balloon depends on lifestyle changes, including a better diet and increased physical activity."
But... if you're eating better... and working out... [The New York Times]