Weight Loss Drugs
Side effects with weight loss drugs can vary depending upon the type of drug you take and how the drug works. Stimulants-type drugs like phentermine can lead to insomnia, increased blood pressure, fast heart rate, restlessness, drug dependence and abuse, and withdrawal symptoms. Drugs that interfere with fat absorption, such as orlistat (Alli), can lead to oily spotting, gas, and soft stools. Diet pills that affect neurotransmitters in the brain, such as Belviq (lorcaserin) or Contrave (bupropion and naltrexone) can be linked with headache, nausea and vomiting, constipation, dry mouth, and dizziness.
Many stimulant-type weight loss medications like phentermine or diethylpropion are only recommended for short-term use (up to 12 weeks) due to risk of dependence and other side effects. However, orlistat (Alli, Xenical) can be used for longer-term weight loss, including the maintenance of previously lost weight. You can get Alli at the drugstore without a prescription.Newer prescription weight loss drugs such as Qsymia(phentermine and topiramate), Belviq (lorcaserin), Contrave(bupropion and naltrexone), and Saxenda (liraglutide) are indicated for chronic, long-term use, but only if adequate weight loss (as outlined in the package labeling) occurs. If a 3 to 4 percent weight loss has not been achieved after 12 to 16 weeks, long-term treatment is typically stopped.