Phentermine

PHENTERMINE- phentermine hydrochloride tablet
Actavis Elizabeth LLC

DESCRIPTION

Phentermine hydrochloride USP has the chemical name of α,α-Dimethylphenethylamine hydrochloride. The structural formula is as follows:

Image from Drug Label Content

C10 H15 N∙HCl M.W. 185.7

Phentermine hydrochloride is a white, odorless, hygroscopic, crystalline powder which is soluble in water and lower alcohols, slightly soluble in chloroform and insoluble in ether.

Phentermine hydrochloride, an anorectic agent for oral administration, is available as a tablet containing 37.5 mg of phentermine hydrochloride (equivalent to 30 mg phentermine base).

In addition, each tablet contains the following inactive ingredients: citric acid, corn starch, lactose monohydrate, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, and stearic acid.

CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY

Phentermine hydrochloride is a sympathomimetic amine with pharmacologic activity similar to the prototype drugs of this class used in obesity, the amphetamines. Actions include central nervous system stimulation and elevation of blood pressure. Tachyphylaxis and tolerance have been demonstrated with all drugs of this class in which these phenomena have been looked for.

Drugs of this class used in obesity are commonly known as “anorectics” or “anorexigenics”. It has not been established that the action of such drugs in treating obesity is primarily one of appetite suppression. Other central nervous system actions, or metabolic effects, may be involved, for example.

Adult obese subjects instructed in dietary management and treated with “anorectic” drugs, lose more weight on the average than those treated with placebo and diet, as determined in relatively short-term clinical trials.

The magnitude of increased weight loss of drug-treated patients over placebo-treated patients is only a fraction of a pound a week. The rate of weight loss is greatest in the first weeks of therapy for both drug and placebo subjects and tends to decrease in succeeding weeks. The possible origins of the increased weight loss due to the various drug effects are not established. The amount of weight loss associated with the use of an “anorectic” drug varies from trial to trial, and the increased weight loss appears to be related in part to variables other than the drugs prescribed, such as the physician-investigator, the population treated and the diet prescribed. Studies do not permit conclusions as to the relative importance of the drug and non-drug factors on weight loss.

The natural history of obesity is measured in years, whereas the studies cited are restricted to a few weeks’ duration; thus, the total impact of drug-induced weight loss over that of diet alone must be considered clinically limited.

Phentermine Indications and Usage

Phentermine hydrochloride is indicated as a short-term (a few weeks) adjunct in a regimen of weight reduction based on exercise, behavioral modification and caloric restriction in the management of exogenous obesity for patients with an initial body mass index ≥ 30 kg/m2 , or

≥ 27 kg/m2 in the presence of other risk factors (e.g., hypertension, diabetes, hyperlipidemia).

Below is a chart of Body Mass Index (BMI) based on various heights and weights.

BMI is calculated by taking the patient’s weight, in kilograms (kg), divided by the patient’s height, in meters (m), squared. Metric conversions are as follows:

pounds ÷ 2.2 = kg; inches x 0.0254 = meters.

BODY MASS INDEX (BMI), kg/m2 Height (feet, inches)
Weight (pounds) 5’0” 5’3” 5’6” 5’9” 6’0” 6’3”
140 27 25 23 21 19 18
150 29 27 24 22 20 19
160 31 28 26 24 22 20
170 33 30 28 25 23 21
180 35 32 29 27 25 23
190 37 34 31 28 26 24
200 39 36 32 30 27 25
210 41 37 34 31 29 26
220 43 39 36 33 30 28
230 45 41 37 34 31 29
240 47 43 39 36 33 30
250 49 44 40 37 34 31

The limited usefulness of agents of this class (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY) should be measured against possible risk factors inherent in their use such as those described below.

CONTRAINDICATIONS

Advanced arteriosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, moderate to severe hypertension, hyperthyroidism, know hypersensitivity or idiosyncrasy to the sympathomimetic amines, glaucoma.

Agitated states.

Patients with a history of drug abuse.

During or within 14 days following the administration of monoamine oxidase inhibitors (hypertensive crises may result).

WARNINGS

Phentermine hydrochloride tablets are indicated only as short-term monotherapy for the management of exogenous obesity. The safety and efficacy of combination therapy with phentermine and any other drug products for weight loss, including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (e.g., fluoxetine, sertraline, fluvoxamine, paroxetine), have not been established. Therefore, coadministration of these drug products for weight loss is not recommended.

Primary Pulmonary Hypertension (PPH) — a rare, frequently fatal disease of the lungs – has been reported to occur in patients receiving a combination of phentermine with fenfluramine or dexfenfluramine. The possibility of an association between PPH and the use of phentermine alone cannot be ruled out; there have been rare cases of PPH in patients who reportedly have taken phentermine alone. The initial symptoms of PPH is usually dyspnea. Other initial symptoms include: angina pectoris, syncope or lower extremity edema. Patients should be advised to report immediately any deterioration in exercise tolerance. Treatment should be discontinued in patients who develop new, unexplained symptoms of dyspnea, angina pectoris, syncope or lower extremity edema.

Valvular Heart Disease: Serious regurgitant cardiac valvular disease, primarily affecting the mitral, aortic and/or tricuspid valves, has been reported in otherwise healthy persons who had taken a combination of phentermine with fenfluramine or dexfenfluramine for weight loss. The etiology of these valvulopathies has not been established and their course in individuals after the drugs are stopped is not known. The possibility of an association between valvular heart disease and the use of phentermine alone cannot be ruled out; there have been rare cases of valvular heart disease in patients who reportedly have taken phentermine alone.

Tolerance to the anorectic effect usually develops within a few weeks. When this occurs, the recommended dose should not be exceeded in an attempt to increase the effect; rather, the drug should be discontinued.

Phentermine hydrochloride may impair the ability of the patient to engage in potentially hazardous activities such as operating machinery or driving a motor vehicle; the patient should therefore be cautioned accordingly.

Usage With Alcohol: Concomitant use of alcohol with phentermine hydrochloride may result in an adverse drug interaction.

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