Long-Term Safety of Diet Drugs Unknown
More Studies Are Needed, Canadian Researchers Say
Meridia Trial Under Way
A large, ongoing trial evaluating Meridia in overweight patients with heart
diseaseheart disease should
provide some answers. Results from the study are expected in 2008.
Endocrinologist Holly Wyatt, MD, of the University of Colorado Health
Sciences Center, says she is not overly concerned about the long-term safety of
the prescription weight loss drugs that are now on the market.
"It is true that we don't have clinical trials that follow users for a
decade or more, but we have as much data about the long-term safety of these
drugs as we do about many other drugs that have been approved," she tells
WebMD. "We have solid studies lasting from two to four years."
Meridia is made by Abbott Laboratories. Xenical is made by Roche
Laboratories. Acomplia is made by Sanofi-Aventis. All three companies are WebMD
WebMD attempted to contact all three manufacturers of the drugs.
A spokesperson for Abbott Laboratories says the company is committed to
doing the kind of research called for in the review and pointed to the ongoing
trial evaluating Meridia.
Roche Laboratories and Sanofi-Aventis did not respond to requests for