An alternative to gastric reduction is the insertion of a gastric balloon, filled with physiological salt. The balloon contains a body-friendly colorant. Any leakage of the balloon will color the stool and urine. In this case contact your doctor as soon as possible. An advantage of this method, compared to the reduction ,is that the surgery is less invasive: the insertion is done through the esophagus with local anesthesia. The gastric balloon is a method to safely,and usually without serious complications, lose some pounds. The balloon (made of durable, elastic, high-quality silicon) is mirror-finished on the outside, and can thus generally not cause damage to the inside of the stomach.