Pain, No Gain? Operant Conditioning Pain Patch
2010-03-02 0:00

By Amy Husser |

A controversial new weight-loss technique has tongues wagging — and feeling tender.

The medical procedure involves stitching a small piece of polyethylene mesh onto a patient’s tongue, making it painful to ingest solid foods and forcing a low-calorie, liquid diet.

"The patch is a pattern interrupt," said Dr. Nikolas Chugay, the California-based plastic surgeon who developed the concept. "It is uncomfortable to eat solid foods, so people will all of a sudden remember, I am only to eat liquids."

The medical procedure involves stitching a small piece of polyethylene mesh onto a patient’s tongue, making it painful to ingest solid foods and forcing a low-calorie, liquid diet.

Since last September, Chugay says 35 people have opted for the surgery, resulting in an average weight loss of 20 pounds (over the one-month period the postage-stamp-sized piece of fabric stays stitched on).

"These are people who have been through . . . every conceivable diet; they’ve tried everything and for some reason they just cannot stop eating," he said, adding that the odd patient is looking to shed unwanted weight for special occasions, such as weddings.

The patch wearer is put on a diet of 750 calories a day — about half the consumption amount suggested for the average adult female and one-third the amount for the average adult male. Patients also come in for weekly assessments that include a psychological consult and a diet and exercise plan.

"It gives us a chance to train the patient how to eat right, how to exercise right . . . so when they take the patch out, they will continue on a diet that is sensible," said Chugay.

And it doesn’t come cheap. The 10-minute surgery — performed using a local anesthetic to attach four to six sutures in the direct centre of the tongue — costs about $3,000 U.S..

But critics of the tongue patch have called the procedure "barbaric" and "medieval" and "unnecessarily cruel."

"I don’t think pain is the way to try to encourage people to change their lifestyles," said Dr. Yoni Freedhoff, an Ottawa-based physician who specializes in bariatics, the management of obesity.

"If there was a quick and easy way to do this, we’d all be skinny . . . The notion that pain is required to teach these people what to do is not only a ridiculous assertion but unnecessarily cruel."

Freedhoff says it takes one to three years of "consciously working" at a new behaviour to forge it into a habit.

"Having a device in your mouth that causes you temporary pain when you eat will likely cause a temporary reduction in weight as you stop eating," he said. "Once that device is removed from your mouth — like all diets that involve suffering — almost certainly the weight will return when you go back to the lifestyle you had before you had the medieval torture device installed in your mouth.

"I really can’t think of any other thing in medicine where we (purposefully) evoke pain . . . To me, it sounds like medical madness."

But Chugay rebuffs his fault-finders, saying the procedure is safer than extreme measures such as gastric bypass or liposuction.

"There is nothing barbaric about it . . . It’s a very gentle, non-invasive procedure," he said. "It is not a standard diet procedure; you need to start on your own, make an effort. But if you can’t and you really need to lose the weight . . . this is the next step."

Article from:

Video from:

Related Articles
Weight Loss Tongue Patch Surgery
Pavlovian Conditioning in Human Brains
B.F. Skinner - Changing Human Behaviour through controls (Video)
What is Negative Reinforcement?

Latest News from our Front Page

Munich Jews battle in court over Holocaust remembrance
2015-11-30 20:42
Two Jewish groups in Munich are at odds over how to remember the Holocaust. The situation has escalated, and now one of the groups is suing the city. The argument centers on ‘Stolpersteine’ - bronze memorial plaques that can be found all over Germany, but not in Munich. In July, Munich voted to continue the ban on Stolpersteine first introduced in ...
The Pilgrims Were Definitely Not Like Modern-Day Refugees
2015-11-27 20:01
This upcoming Thanksgiving Day is sure to offer you and your family plenty of opportunities to argue over whether America should be welcoming Syrian refugees. If you have any liberal relatives or friends coming over for your Thursday feast, they’re going to relish the chance to tell everyone that the Pilgrims were refugees too — and hope that statement decimates all ...
ISIS to France: "We will be coming. Victory has been promised to us by Allah"
2015-11-26 3:33
Homegrown French ISIS fighters have issued a chilling threat of new attacks on France just 24 hours after the terrorist group used movie footage of the Eiffel Tower's collapse in another video.  A balaclava-clad militant is seen warning 'we will be coming, we will come to crush your country' in footage posted on Twitter earlier today. It is unclear where the film ...
ISIS teenage 'poster girl' Samra Kesinovic 'beaten to death' as she tried to flee the group
2015-11-26 1:07
She appeared in social media images for the group carrying a Kalashnikov and surrounded by armed men A teenage girl who ran away from her Vienna home to join Isis in Syria has reportedly been beaten to death by the group after trying to escape. Samra Kesinovic, 17, travelled to Syria last year with her friend Sabina Selimovic, 15. The two became a ...
The Right Stuff's flagship podcast "The Daily Shoah" has been censored by Soundcloud
2015-11-25 22:56
Editor's note: The PC corporate moral police strike again. Just as Radio 3Fourteen & Red Ice Radio were censored from iTunes, The Daily Shoah was pulled from Soundcloud today. As per usual, there is a double standard, they allow any kind of anti-White material: No counter culture humor making fun of the genocidal mainstream garbage is allowed! ... From: Soundcloud took it upon ...
More News »