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Phentermine for weight loss: Can it help?By Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/phentermine/AN01715
- With Mayo Clinic preventive medicine specialist
Donald Hensrud, M.D.read biographyclose window
Donald Hensrud, M.D.Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H., M.S.
Dr. Donald D. Hensrud is chair of the Division of Preventive, Occupational and Aerospace Medicine with a joint appointment in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, Metabolism, & Nutrition at Mayo Clinic. He is an associate professor of preventive medicine and nutrition at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine. Dr. Hensrud directed the Executive Health Program at Mayo Clinic for more than 10 years.
He received his B.S. from the University of North Dakota, M.D. from the University of Hawaii, M.P.H. from the University of Minnesota and M.S. in nutrition sciences from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He completed residency training in internal medicine and fellowship training in preventive medicine at Mayo Clinic and completed a clinical nutrition fellowship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
Dr. Hensrud is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, the American Board of Preventive Medicine and the American Board of Physician Nutrition Specialists, of which he is a past president.
His career interests have combined nutrition, weight management, and prevention. He is the author of many scientific articles and book chapters and was editor of Mayo Clinic Healthy Weight for EveryBody; The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook, which won a 2005 James Beard Foundation award; The Mayo Clinic Plan: 10 Essential Steps to a Better Body & Healthier Life; and The Mayo Clinic Diet, published in January 2010.
Dr. Hensrud says healthy lifestyle habits in diet and physical activity are extremely important as evidenced by a large body of scientific evidence. He also says implementing these lifestyle habits is realistic, sustainable and enjoyable. A primary goal of his work is to help people achieve this.
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Phentermine for weight loss: Can it help?
Is phentermine a good option for weight loss?
from Donald Hensrud, M.D.
Phentermine (Adipex-P, Suprenza) is an amphetamine-like prescription medication used to suppress appetite. It can help weight loss by decreasing your hunger or making you feel full longer. Phentermine may be recommended as part of an overall weight-loss plan if you're significantly overweight — not if you want to lose just a few pounds.
Phentermine may be a way to kick-start your weight loss. But once you stop taking it, you're likely to regain the weight you lost. That's why phentermine should be part of a plan that includes healthy eating and regular exercise — you're more likely to maintain your weight loss over time if you don't rely solely on medications.
Phentermine is a Schedule IV drug, a classification given to drugs that have a potential for abuse, although the actual potential is low. Phentermine is approved only for short-term use — 12 weeks or less. Although phentermine is one of the most commonly prescribed weight-loss medications, it has some potentially serious drawbacks. Side effects may include:
- Increased blood pressure
- Dry mouth
Phentermine isn't a good option if you have certain medical conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, an overactive thyroid gland or glaucoma, or if you are pregnant, may become pregnant or are breast-feeding. Also phentermine shouldn't be combined with other weight-loss medications.Next question
Hoodia: Does this dietary supplement help weight loss?
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- Bray GA, et al. Drug therapy of obesity. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Aug. 10, 2011.
- Phentermine. Micromedex Healthcare Series. http://www.micromedex.com. Accessed Aug. 10, 2011.
- Prescription medications for the treatment of obesity. National Institutes of Health. http://www.win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/prescription.htm. Accessed Aug. 10, 2011.
- Hensrud DD (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 10, 2011.