Is a ‘Pacemaker for the Stomach’ a Good Idea?
Obesity is a major problem – especially among Americans – and last week the Wall Street Journal reported that the FDA has approved a device that’s being called a “pacemaker for the stomach.”
The device, made by EnteroMedics Inc. of St. Paul, Minn., is the first of its kind to treat obesity by targeting nerves that link the stomach and the brain. The Maestro Rechargeable System would block electrical signals in the abdominal vagus nerve by dispatching high-frequency electrical pulses.
I’m all for devices that make life easier for folks who really need it, but this appears to be one more thing that will help people lose weight without actually teaching them anything to avoid putting the unhealthy weight back on. It’s a shortcut.
This device – if it works as intended – will be just one more gimmick that takes the personal accountability out of becoming healthy. Most cases of obesity are due to poor nutrition and lack of exercise, and for those people this device won’t teach them how to be disciplined to live a healthier lifestyle, it will only limit how much unhealthy food they eat.
What do you think? Is the Maestro Rechargeable System a good idea?