WeightControl.com Interview with:
Daniel Giraldo-Herrera, MD,
Postdoctoral research fellow
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and
Clifford R. Weiss, MD, PI of the study
Professor of Radiology and Biomedical Engineering
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and
Whiting School of Engineering.
WeightControl.com: What is the background for this study? Would you describe the procedure and how it works to reduce obesity?
Response: Bariatric Embolization is a minimally invasive image-guided medical procedure for patients with morbid obesity who seek weight loss. The procedure is performed with tiny catheters through small nicks in the skin, deploying precisely engineered microscopic beads. These are deposited to block blood flow in the upper part of the stomach to reduce appetite by suppressing the release of the hunger-stimulating hormone ghrelin. With less hunger, patients can then more easily restrict excess calories from food intake. Weight loss results as they tap their own caloric energy reserves, ideally from subcutaneous fat (the deposits between the skin and deep muscle tissues) and visceral fat (the deposits surrounding abdominal organs). Protein stored in muscle can also be turned to calories for energy.
The purpose of this study was to understand if weight loss resulting from Bariatric Embolization comes from fat, muscle, or a mix of both. In a pilot trial, we used AMRA Medical’s advanced body composition measurement techniques with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to determine body composition changes in the abdomen and thighs, where the most significant fat deposits and muscle groups are located. MRI is the reference standard for body composition measurement since it allows for rapid, detailed analysis of anatomic distributions and accurate measurement of fat and muscle tissue volumes.