FDA panel backs previously rejected Qnexa weight-loss pill

Some women have trouble losing weight not because they eat too much but because they eat too little. Sounds unlikely, but Marisa Sherry, RD, a registered dietitian in private practice in New York City, says consuming less than 1,200 calories a day puts a woman's body into "starvation mode." The metabolism slows, meaning it takes longer to burn each calorie. Bumping the daily calorie count up a bit can speed weight loss.
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(AP) A panel of advisers to the Food and Drug Administration overwhelmingly backed approval for a highly anticipated anti-obesity pill from Vivus Inc., a drug which the FDA previously rejected due to safety concerns.

The FDA panel of outside physicians voted 20-2 in favor of the weight loss drug Qnexa, setting the stage for a potential comeback for a drug that has been plagued by side effects since it was first submitted to the agency in 2010.

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A majority of panelists ultimately backed the drug due to its impressive weight loss results, with most patients reporting nearly 10 percent weight loss. But the group stressed the importance of confirming the drug's safety, particularly its effects on the heart, by tracking patients in a large, follow-up study. FDA's decision is expected in April.