New diet tongue patch raising concerns

A patch, now known as the diet tongue patch, was invented by Dr. Nikolas Chugay who is an aesthetic plastic surgeon.  It is being touted by some dieters as a great new way to lose weight, at the same time, some doctors are concerned.

The procedure is done in-office.  The doctor numbs the tongue and sews the patch onto the tongue.  The patch is made of material that has been approved for other medical uses. "We put 4 to 6 stitches right into the patch and a little portion of the tongue to really secure it do it stays there for a month or 6 weeks," according to Dr. Chugay.

The placement of the patch makes it uncomfortable to eat solid food.  Dr. Chugay says patients follow a liquid only diet that provides adequate nutrition, but restricts calories to 800 a day.

Some doctors are concerned the diet tongue patch diet may be too extreme.  Patients risk infection, swelling, possible nerve damage, or even tissue necrosis.  Dr. Chugay denies any such complications have ever occurred.

Copyright 2011 KTRE. Information for this story was provided by ABC News.  All rights reserved.