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Non-Surgical Medical Weight Loss

At UPMC, we know that weight loss is a very personal journey: what works for another person may not be the right path for you. That’s why, in addition to our full range of bariatric surgery services, we offer customized non-surgical weight loss alternatives that are medically sound and supervised to help you achieve your weight loss goals.

What Is Medical Weight Loss?

Medical weight loss empowers you to lose weight without surgery, by changing your relationship with food by eliminating harmful eating habits and adapting a healthier lifestyle.

What Are the Benefits of Medical Weight Loss?

The benefits of medical weight loss go far beyond better-fitting clothes: it can also lower blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels, and reduce the pain in weight-bearing joints.

Your own results will depend on a variety of factors:

  • The amount of weight you want to lose
  • Your related medical conditions
  • The non-surgical weight loss options you choose
  • The personal commitment you bring to the process

Is Medical Weight Loss Right for Me?

Non-surgical medical weight loss services may be the right choice if:

  • You prefer to lose weight without surgery or do not qualify for bariatric surgery;
  • You have tried dieting on your own without success;
  • You are worried about other health issues such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, or sleep apnea that may be the result of your weight gain
  • You need to lose weight before bariatric surgery

Non-Surgical Medical Weight Loss Services

Medical weight loss looks at the big picture, taking into consideration your individual needs, overall health and medical conditions, and weight loss goals. We help you on your journey to long-lasting weight loss by making major lifestyle changes through nutrition, exercise, and counseling.

UPMC medical weight loss services vary by location, but can include:

  • Non-surgical intragastric balloon procedure
  • Nutrition and lifestyle counseling
  • Customized diet plans (including low-calorie meal replacement options)
  • Medication to help with weight loss

Intragastric Balloon for Weight Loss

The intragastric balloon procedure can help you shed pounds without the need for surgery. It’s an option if you’re overweight or obese and diet and exercise alone have not worked for you.

This minimally invasive outpatient procedure typically takes about 30 minutes. It can help jump-start weight loss by taking up space in your stomach — limiting how much you can eat and keeping you feeling full longer after meals. The balloon helps make portion control easier and weight loss more manageable when combined with a proper diet and exercise.

Nutrition and Lifestyle Counseling

Long-term weight loss requires a commitment to major lifestyle changes, such as eating healthy and being active. Finding the balance that’s right for you is key to achieving your weight loss goal.

Our registered dietitians/nutritionists partner with you on your weight-loss journey, providing:

  • Expert guidance on nutrition and diet
  • Customized eating and meal plans
  • Strategies and tools to help you make smart choices and needed lifestyle changes

They’ll help you to recognize unhealthy eating habits, emotional eating, and other personal barriers to weight loss. You’ll learn to understand your individual nutritional needs and sort through the choices, so you can make healthy eating part of your lifestyle.

Low-calorie meal replacements are available at some UPMC bariatric locations. Meal replacements can help accelerate weight loss, reduce the stress of meal preparation, and help you control portions.

Using Medicine to Lose Weight

Many people who struggle with their weight find that lifestyle changes — such as following a healthy eating plan and getting regular exercise — can help them lose weight and keep it off. But when lifestyle changes aren’t enough to help shed the excess weight, your doctor may suggest adding an FDA-approved prescription weight-loss medicine to your program.

Medically supervised weight-loss medicines work in different ways. Some help curb your appetite or make you feel fuller sooner. Others are designed to make it harder for your body to absorb fat from the foods you eat. Studies show that these medicines work best in when combined with other lifestyle changes, like mindful eating and exercise.

What to Expect

UPMC’s weight loss experts will work with you to create an effective plan for healthy, non-surgical weight loss. After being medically evaluated, you’ll work with a registered dietitian/nutritionist to create and follow an effective diet plan. You’ll also receive counseling to help you change your behavior and lifestyle. Our team of medical weight loss professionals will work with you to establish realistic goals and how to achieve them, and help you adjust your plan as needed.

Initial Consultation

Your journey starts with an initial consultation where you’ll meet one-to-one with a member of our medical weight loss team to discuss your goals, take your medical history, and determine the next steps in your weight loss plan.

Financial Considerations

Insurance coverage for medical weight loss varies by plan and patient medical needs. You should consult with your insurance provider before starting a plan.

Our Experts

Specially-trained weight loss professionals may include dietitians and a nutritionist, nurses, physician assistants, doctors, and counselors.