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The Weight Loss Pills - Pharmacy Weight Loss History
One sentence summary:
[The THIN PILL has a long history of nasty setbacks.]
Trial and Error
Weight-loss drugs have worked, but the side effects can be nasty.
Page 1 of 1
Dubbed "speed," amphetamines like Hydrin were the miracle drugs of a
postwar US, used to treat everything from Parkinson's to hay fever. In
1947, Hydrin was also approved to treat obesity. True to its nickname,
speed worked fast: Patients lost an average of 11 pounds in 30 days.
Other amphetamine-based "diet pills" followed.
But: By the mid-1960s, amphetamines were the most prescribed and most
abused drug in the US. Classified as a controlled substance in 1971,
they were pulled from the market for weight loss in 1979.
In the 1990s, researchers discovered that a mixture of two
amphetamine-like appetite suppressants phentermine and fenfluramine
produced a highly effective combination for weight loss. Nearly
two-thirds of patients lost at least 5 percent of their body weight
after one year the FDA's benchmark for efficacy. The agency approved
phen-fen for weight loss in 1996.
But: Phen-fen was a huge hit until the Mayo Clinic reported that the
combination was associated with heart valve disease. In 1997,
fenfluramine was pulled off the market.
Approved by the FDA in 1997, Meridia (known generically as sibutramine)
boosts serotonin levels in the brain, making users feel satiated. In
trials, 60 percent of patients lost 5 percent of their body weight after
But: Meridia's most serious side effects are increased blood pressure
and pulse rate, as well as an elevated risk of coronary artery disease.
Since the obese are often already at great risk of heart disease, this
has dampened enthusiasm for the drug.
Sold as Xenical, the obesity drug was approved in the US in 1999. It
works by impeding the body's ability to absorb fat. Studies show
weight-loss results are comparable to Meridia.
But: The fat has to go somewhere, and Xenical users report what's
euphemistically called "oily discharge" flatulence and loose bowel
movements making it unpopular among patients.
This Sanofi-Aventis drug is on the market in Europe as Acomplia but
awaits FDA approval in the US. It packs a one-two punch: In the brain it
diminishes cravings, while elsewhere in the body it improves fat metabolism.
But: Good results in four human trials, but some patients reported side
effects including depression, anxiety, and irritability. The FDA delayed
a decision on the drug earlier this year.
The THIN PILL has a history of nasty setbacks.
1) Eat Till SATISFIED, Not STUFFED... Atkins repeated 9 times in the book
2) Exercise: It's Non-Negotiable..... Chapter 22 title, Atkins book
3) Don't Diet Without Supplemental Nutrients... Chapter 23 title, Atkins
4) A sensible eating plan, and follow it. (Atkins, Self Made or Other)
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