Gastric balloons now fit inside a pill

A PILL that releases a balloon in the gut has proved an effective means of losing weight in a randomised trial.

Gastric balloons are not new, but the novelty of the Obalon balloon is that it doesn’t require invasive surgery to put in place.

Instead, patients swallow a capsule the size of a vitamin pill, attached to a micro-catheter. Once in place, the capsule is gas-inflated to the size of an apple and the catheter is then released.

Patients can progressively receive a second or third balloon as their body adjusts to the