MAR 24, 2019 04:47 PM PDT

Generic Weight Loss Drug Safe & Effective for Long-Term Use

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

In a study published in Obesity, an inexpensive weight-loss drug FDA-approved 60 years ago for a three month short-term use-- may now be regarded as safe and effective for longer-term treatment. The research was conducted by Wake Forest Baptist Health and the Patient Outcomes Research to Advance Learning (PORTAL) network.

"Although diet and exercise are critical components of any weight-loss program, up to half of patients don't have long-term success with lifestyle changes alone," said first author Kristina H. Lewis, M.D., assistant professor of epidemiology and prevention, at Wake Forest Baptist. "In those cases, medications or surgery can help. Generic phentermine is an effective and affordable option, but now that we view obesity as a chronic disease, it's important to have medications that can be used indefinitely. Most new weight-loss drugs are approved for long-term use, but unfortunately the newer drugs can be expensive if they are not covered by insurance."

The study concluded that individuals who stayed on phentermine longer will experience greater weight loss than those who stayed on the drug for three months or less. Additionally, longer-term analysis of the drug was not found to be associated with increases in blood pressure or an increased risk of heart attack, stroke or death.

"In general, the longer patients were on the medicine the more weight loss they had," Lewis said. "Not surprisingly, when patients stopped taking the medicine weight regain was common."

"For patients who respond to and tolerate it, phentermine may be a safe and affordable way to achieve greater and longer lasting weight loss, but we need clinical trials to provide more certainty," Lewis said. "At the moment, there is no change to the FDA labeling so doctors should use caution with the decision about prescribing it longer-term."

Source: Medical Xpress

About the Author
  • Nouran enjoys writing on various topics including science & medicine, global health, and conservation biology. She hopes through her writing she can make science more engaging and communicable to the general public.
You May Also Like
DEC 13, 2018
Drug Discovery
DEC 13, 2018
First Non-Opioid Drug?
In a study published in the medical journal—PAIN, a non-opioid drug compound discovered by researchers from the National Institute of Health (NIH)&md...
DEC 20, 2018
Health & Medicine
DEC 20, 2018
Common Medication Regimens for Sarcoidosis
Sarcoidosis is a granulomatous disease that most commonly affects the lungs, but any organ system can be involved. It is most often found and diagnosed in...
DEC 18, 2018
Drug Discovery
DEC 18, 2018
Increasing Misuse of Prescription Drugs
According to a study published in Psychiatric Services in Advance, misuse of prescription drugs accounts for more than 17 percent of overall use. In the st...
JAN 03, 2019
Health & Medicine
JAN 03, 2019
Antibiotic Resistance - A Global Health Threat
Antibiotics play a critical role in fighting off bacterial infections. Since the discovery of the first antibiotic, Penicillin, antibiotic treatment became an effective and safe tool which is...
FEB 01, 2019
Cardiology
FEB 01, 2019
Parents Prefer Opioids For Their Children Despite Risks
Opioid abuse has become an epidemic in the United States. It is estimated that 72,000 deaths were the result of opioid abuse in 2017. The hardest hit state...
APR 19, 2019
Genetics & Genomics
Loading Comments...