What is phentermine?
Phentermine is the most widely-prescribed weight-loss medication in the United States.
It is available as a tablet, capsule or orally dissolving tablet (ODT), and sold under the popular brand names: Adipex, Qsymia and Duromine.
This medication first received FDA approval in 1959 as an appetite suppressant for the short-term management of obesity. Phentermine helps patients lose weight by decreasing appetite and boosting energy.
Phentermine hydrochloride, the active ingredient in these weight loss pills, is a controlled substance. For that reason, it is only available with a doctor's prescription, and only for 12 weeks at a time.
When used as prescribed, phentermine is usually safe and well-tolerated. However, like all medications, it carries the risk of side effects and is not safe or appropriate for everyone. Potential reactions to this drug range from mild (e.g. dry mouth and insomnia) to severe reactions (e.g. chest pains or trouble breathing). Contact your doctor if any side effect bothers you or doesn’t go away.
Prescription weight loss drugs are designed as a complement to healthy lifestyle habits. It is critical that patients use their time on this medication to develop healthier eating and exercise habits that will help promote and maintain weight loss.
As many Type 2 diabetics are overweight or obese, phentermine provides an important treatment option to help control diabetes by reducing their weight.