Contrave, a Naltrexone and Wellbutrin Combo, Tests Well

Orexigen Theraputics releases new drug

pillsI don’t approve of diet pills, in general. I don’t think they work, and they are usually unhealthy. Nonetheless, scientific studies on Contrave, a new drug from Orexigen Theraputics, say that the pill is effective, so if you’re going to take diet pills anyway, this might be a good one.

Contrave, which is a combination of naltrexone and Wellbutrin (or bupropion), treats the psychological side of obesity rather than the physical side. WEbMD says:

Contrave doesn’t work in the belly. It works in the hypothalamus, the brain’s central thermostat that controls appetite, temperature, and how the body burns energy.

Furthermore, Contrave results in gradual weight loss, so it doesn’t encourage quick, unhealthy amounts of weight loss.

Know your drugs

Don’t apply for that a no teletrack payday loan to purchase Contrave yet. Wait until you get the facts. Contrave is a combination of an anti-addiction drug, naltrexone, and an antidepressant, bupropion, which is sold under the brand name Wellbutrin. WebMD says:

It’s already known that people lose weight soon after starting Wellbutrin treatment. But this effect soon wears off, and people regain weight. That’s where the naltrexone comes in, says endocrinologist Dennis D. Kim, MD, MBA, Orexigen’s senior vice president for medical affairs.

“Naltrexone comes in and lifts the brake on the Wellbutrin effect,” Kim tells WebMD. “So you have a synergistic effect to signal the hypothalamus to reduce food intake. Weight decrease is maintained over time.”

Clinical trials

Of course, Contrave doesn’t have a 100 percent success rate. Furthermore, just like any other dieting supplement, it works best when combined with a healthy diet and exercise. It also doesn’t work all the time, but late-stage clinical trials found:

The drug was tested in a clinical trial that enrolled nearly 700 obese people — 90% of them women, with an average weight of 223 pounds. All study participants enrolled in an intensive weight loss program that included counseling, diet, and exercise. Two-thirds of the study participants also took Contrave.

Just under 60% of the participants stayed in the program for 56 weeks.

The intensive weight loss program worked well. After 56 weeks, they had an overall weight loss of just over 5% of their body weight — 11 to 16 pounds. Moreover, 11% of participants who finished the study lost more than 15% of their body weight.

But those who took Contrave did even better. After 56 weeks, they lost 9.3% of their body weight — 20 to 25 pounds. And more than 29% of them lost more than 15% of their body weight.

Side effects

WebMD reports the only side effects were nausea and mild to moderate headaches, usually experienced after test subjects first started taking Contrave.

Orexigen Theraputics plans to seek FDA approval for Contrave, the naltrexone and bupropion combination pill, next year.

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