Advisory Committee Backs New Weight Loss Drug, QnexaPosted: Feb 22 in Medical Weight Loss News by Dr. Lazarus
On February 22nd, 2012, the Advisory Committee to the FDA met to review a new weight loss drug, Qnexa. This drug is a combination of Phentermine and Topiramate, and the combination yields substantially better weight loss than Phentermine alone, even with lower doses of Phentermine.
In 2010, the same advisory committee voted against Qnexa, and shortly thereafter the FDA opted not to approve the drug. They also voted against 2 other obesity drugs, and we saw another weight loss drug, Meridia withdrawn from the market too.
If the FDA approves Qnexa, it will be the new first drug approved for weight loss in 14 years. Although it will not be an appropriate drug for women considering pregnancy or for those with heart disease or high risk of heart disease, it could offer very substantial weight loss for others. Keep tuned in to our blog for more news regarding Qnexa, and also regarding the other weight loss drugs up for review between now and this Summer.
I am hopeful and excited that 2012 will mark a new era in medical management of obesity, with more modern, improved, effective and safe tools. A drug like Qnexa can really help close the gap between medically-achievable weight loss results and surgical results. Also, Qnexa was researched long-term (2 years). This suggests that the idea of using medication short-term for obesity treatment will be put to rest, and we will manage it long-term with medication, similar to how we approach other chronic medical problems like diabetes or high blood pressure. A new long-term treatment option would be a powerful tool in our armamentarium.