London hospital trials alternative to gastric band for those who cannot have surgery… and it takes just 15 minutes to put in placeThe Endobarrier is installed orally and lines the intestine, preventing food from being absorbed
Speedy cure: Lorry driver Leslie Lloyd has had an Endobarrier fitted and his weight has dropped dramatically
A pioneering alternative to a gastric band operation – which takes just 15 minutes to put in place – is being trialed in London.
The Endobarrier is a balloon-type device, taken orally, which lines the intestine and prevents food from being absorbed.
It is designed to help dangerously overweight patients who are unlikely to be able to cope with the trauma of gastric surgery.
Researchers at Imperial College
Healthcare say that the treatment has so far been a big success.
The procedure is not currently available on the NHS but the
first patients to receive an Endobarrier are shedding weight without
experiencing the potentially debilitating side-effects of a major
driver Leslie Lloyd has had an Endobarrier fitted. His diet of bacon
rolls – bought in roadside cafes during lengthy journeys – caused his
weight to balloon to 18 stone.
Lloyd was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, a condition which kills three people an hour in the UK. But he has now lost almost three stone and his sugar levels have dropped from a dangerous 16.9 to a more healthy 7.1.
Mr Lloyd, from Crawley, told the BBC London’s Inside Out: 'I’ve tried dieting but unfortunately with the lifestyle that I lead on the truck it’s so easy to stop at snack wagons and get a bacon roll, packet of crisps or chocolate bar.'
Loose weight fast: The balloon-like Endobarrier lines the intestine preventing food from being absorbed
If his diabetes had reached the point where he needed to be treated with insulin, he would have lost his HGV licence.
The Endobarrier will stay in place for up to a year before being removed. However Mr Lloyd’s diabetes is expected to go into remission within a few weeks.
He said: 'Now I feel a lot better in
myself, I’m not so lethargic and more active. I can go out and go on
walks and I’m not tired all the time. I feel 100 per cent better. I’m
very happy, and the weight loss is a bonus.'
The weight loss aid takes just 15 minutes to put in place and is perfect for those who cannot cope with the trauma of a gastric operation
A clip from tonight's episode of Inside Out shows the Endobarrier being put in place
While the Endobarrier is not as effective as a gastric bypass, it will benefit those who cannot be exposed to the risks of surgery – a common problem for overweight patients.
In 2009, almost a quarter of adults in England were classed as obese and if nothing is done to slow down the proportion of obese people, the figure will rise 40 per cent by 2030.
Obese people are 80 times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes.
Professor Nadey Hakim, surgical director of the West London Transplant Unit at Hammersmith Hospital, said: 'Here we have a procedure which is simple. It takes 15 minutes, there is no incision and amazingly it does improve if not cure Type 2 diabetics.'
Inside Out is on BBC1 at 7.30pm tonight.