The EndoBarrier is a medical device for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and obesity which is worn inside of the body.

It is a thin plastic sleeve which lines the first 60cm of the small intestine, causing food to be absorbed further down in the intestine.

The body reacts to food in a different way when the first part of the small intestine is blocked.

This helps aid weight loss and reduction of blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes.

How is the EndoBarrier fitted?

The procedure can be performed in under an hour, with the patient under anaesthetic. The sleeve is inserted via the mouth, through the stomach to the small intestine where it is fixed in place by a sprung metal anchor to prevent it slipping out.

How does the EndoBarrier work?

The EndoBarrier works by preventing the body from digesting food within the upper part of the small intestine. Cutting out this part of digestion means that the body reacts differently to food you eat. You feel more full after a smaller meal. The liner also changes the way the body manages blood sugar so that in most patients their blood sugar level rapidly come down into the normal range.

The concept is therefore similar to that of having as gastric bypass, but does not involve invasive surgery, is safer, not permanent and is less expensive

Can I apply to try the EndoBarrier?

EndoBarrier therapy is available from the National Obesity Surgery Centre. The EndoBarrier can be fitted at London, Manchester and Southampton.

Who is the EndoBarrier suitable for?

The Endobarrier is suitable for people:

  • With type 2 diabetes
  • Aged over 18 years old
  • If you have struggled to lose weight by other methods
  • If you do not want to have weight loss surgery

Would anything rule out having the EndoBarrier?

The most common conditions which would prevent a patient having the EndoBarrier are:

  • Stomach ulcers (peptic ulcers)
  • Bleeding disorders (eg people with haemophilia or on anti-arthritis drugs)
  • Major digestive surgery in the past

How much would the EndoBarrier cost?

The process would likely cost in the region of £7,000.

Does the Endobarrier work?

In a previous 12 month study, participants lost an average of 3.5 stones in weight (22 Kg). 83% of patients with type 2 diabetes experienced a decrease in their HbA1c to under 7.0%, with a considerable percentage of these people able to come off their diabetes medication altogether.

The fact that digestion is delayed by the sleeve, changes the way the body’s hormones are activated, which helps the body feel full and improves glucose tolerance.

Are there any side effects of having the EndoBarrier?

Those interested in having the EndoBarrier should be aware that they may experience one or more of the following side effects:

  • Abdominal pain on the right side
  • Bloating

In earlier trials, the EndoBarrier had to be removed, in a small percentage of cases, after becoming dislodged. However, the sprung anchor has since been improved.

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