Weight Loss

FDA Set to Approve New Weight-Loss Drug Contrave

| by Kate Wharmby Seldman

A panel of experts at the US Food and Drug Administration has recommended that the FDA approve Contrave as a weight-loss drug.

The new medication is not a diet pill per se: it's a combination of an anti-depressant and an anti-addiction medication, and it's aimed at combating the psychological causes of obesity.

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Its antidepressant component, bupropion, is the same ingredient in popular antidepressant medication Wellbutrin and anti-smoking drug Zyban. Naltrexone is commonly used to treat opioid and alcohol dependency.

Contrave is the first weight-loss drug that the FDA has come close to approving in recent months: it rejected two others in October because of worries about safety. The panel of experts did, however, recommend that additional studies be conducted on possible heart risks.

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The FDA will make a final decision on Contrave by January 31.