Dr. Roy C. Blank, MD, an expert in Internal Medicine and Clinical Nutrition, comments that “successful long-term pharmacological treatment of obesity has remained an elusive goal. Previous therapies that have produced adequate weight loss have produced unacceptable side effects. Fenfluramine and dexfenfluramine were associated with valvular heart disease and pulmonary hypertension. Sibutramine produced increased cardiovascular adverse events despite weight loss. The older agents are approved for short-term therapy only. Hopefully, the recently approved weight-loss medications will open a new era in obesity management. Chronic pharmacotherapy that produces weight-loss and reduces adverse cardiovascular outcomes represents the optimal therapeutic goal. If the new and future medications achieve this dual goal of weight loss and cardiovascular-event reduction, perhaps non-surgical treatment of obesity will achieve the success that is now seen with hypertension management.”
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