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Reviewers Take Second Look at Weight Loss Medications Due to Meridia Side Effects

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Silver Spring, MDRegulators with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will begin scrutinizing weight loss medications more closely due to concerns over medications like Meridia sibutramine.

span itemprop="image" itemscope itemtype="" style="display:block">In a recent review of the medication's side effects, the FDA found that Meridia can increase the risk of heart attack and stroke in patients with a history of cardiovascular disease. As of last January, the product's manufacturer, Abbott Laboratories, was legally required to include a contraindication on packaging for the drug warning about the dangers it poses.

The risk, and that potentially created by the use of other weight loss medications, stems from the drug's alteration of the body's chemistry, which can affect people differently, according to a recent report in the Wall Street Journal.

Reviewers at the FDA will most likely step up their research on weight loss medication to discern which chemical compositions will work best for particular groups of individuals.

"Obesity has many causes, and ferreting out what is going to work in individuals requires more options," Charles Billington, a professor of medicine at the University of Minnesota and medical director of the obesity program at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center, told the Journal.


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