In the past month the FDA has approved two different medications for the treatment of obesity. Most recently the combination drug Qsymia was approved. This medication is a combination of two medications that have been around for a long time: phentermine and topiramate. Phentermine (Adipex) has been used with success for many years to help patients lose weight, and we have been using it for several years either as a primary weight loss program, or to augment the success of surgical weight loss patients. Topiramate, initially released many years ago as an antiseizure medication, has been used by many obesitologists to increase the effect of phentermine without increasing the dosage.
Although this is exciting news, the success of both of these medications was modest in the study groups. What is more exciting than the approval of these medications is that, along with Medicare’s recent decision supporting sleeve gastrectomy, this shows support from several government agencies recognizing the serious public health threat that we face from the disease of obesity.
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Dr. Trace Curry