Everyone is aware that it is not easy to lose weight when compared to putting it up. And more so if weight issues are associated with medical conditions. It needs a lot of commitment from a person to bring about life style changes (to reduce weight) which is never easy and sometimes can be frustrating if the results are not shown quickly. Using dietary pills is a more easy method to lose weight, but most of them are over the counter products not approved by the government body, so their safety and effectiveness are always in doubt. But a few prescription dietary pills are approved by the government bodies and are sold under strict terms and conditions. Here we will discuss about one such drug Qsymia.

What is Qsymia? Qsymia (pronounced Kyu-sim-ee-uh) is the brand name of a FDA approved prescription, anti-obesity/weight loss drug. It is a combination of anorectic sympathomimetic amine “Phentermine “a pschcostimulant and an anticonvulsant “Topiramate”. It is recommended for chronic weight management for obese adults with basic metabolic index (BMI) of 30 kg/m2 or greater or 27kg/m2 or greater in case of a weight related medical issue as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, Type2 diabetes and dyslipidemia.

Mode of action and its effectiveness: As Qsymia is a combination of phentermine and topiramate hence it would be better to know the individual components role in the weight loss.

Phentermine: It is a sympathomimetic amine which is often used to treat attention defect disorder. It acts as an appetite suppressant by targeting on the hormones of, dopamine (related to increase in the ability to burn body fat) and neurotransmitter norepinephrine (fight and flight hormone).in obese people there is a decreased sensitivity to leptin a satiety hormone resulting in the inability to detect satiety despite high energy stores. These neurotransmitters signal a flight and fight response in the body which in turn stops the hunger signal by increasing the concentration of leptin in the blood. This leptin increase will in turn makes the brain signal that the body does not require further food.

Topiramate: It was earlier approved by FDA as an anticonvulsant to treat epilepsy. It is also prescribed for severe migraine attacks. It is added to dietary pills mainly as a fat blocker to slow down the rate of fat absorption in the body cells. It also makes the food less tasty to the tongue.

Although the exact mechanism of the combined effect (like in Qsymia) of the above two drugs are not known. But Qsymia seems to target serotonin (a natural appetite suppressant and primary satisfaction neurotransmitter).Qsymia seems to target multiple brain pathways that trigger overeating. It also acts by reducing the absorption of body fat (topiramate) and suppression of appetite (Phentermine). Through Qsymia, weight loss is associated with improved cholesterol, improved blood sugar and decreased blood pressure. It also increases anorexigenic effect (thus helps to stick to low calorie diet). It’s always important to discuss the potential risks involved with the physician which may vary with a person’s medical history. Remember that” A drug is worth, only if the benefits outweigh the risks”.