Pondimin is the brand name for the anorectic drug Fenfluramine. This prescription drug is used to encourage weight loss in obese patients. It is mainly used as a short term treatment intended to rapidly reduce a person’s weight over a period of two or three weeks. It has been officially taken off the market in the U.S.; however, it is still available in other areas of the world. While an effective drug for obesity treatment, it has several mild to severe side effects that patients need to take into consideration when determining whether or not to use it as a weight loss tool.
Pondimin (Fenfluramine) – The Basics
Pondimin (Fenfluramine) is a prescription appetite suppressant that was originally designed to treat obesity patients. While appetite suppression is the main way in which this drug helps overweight patients to lose weight, it is also suspected that Pondimin (Fenfluramine) may impact a person’s metabolism and their central nervous system.
Pondimin (Fenfluramine) – Dosage
Pondimin is normally given in three 20mg doses throughout the day to start out. If after a couple of weeks the medication is not helping with the patient’s weight loss, then the dosage is increased by 20mg a day. The new dosage schedule would be four 20mg caplets a day and would stay in effect for a week. If weight loss is still not experienced after a week, the dosage will be increase by one more 20mg caplet. The maximum dosage of Pondimin (Fenfluramine) for any patient is six 20mg caplets per day, or 120mg per day.
Pondimin (Fenfluramine) – Side Effects
There are many different side effects that Pondimin (Fenfluramine) can produce. The most common side effect is Xerostomia, which is also called dry mouth and cotton mouth. This condition is caused primarily by dehydration initiated by the effects that Pondimin (Fenfluramine) has on the patient’s digestive and central nervous systems.
Other side effects that Pondimin (Fenfluramine) has been known to cause include dizziness, headaches, depression, confusion, elevated mood and anxiety. Gastrointestinal problems can also develop such as abdominal pain, constipation and nausea. Genitourinary problems such as an increase in urination frequency and dysuria, which is painful urination, are other side effects caused by Pondimin. Also, skin conditions have been known to develop such as burning sensations and rashes.
The most serious side effects that have been associated with Pondimin (Fenfluramine) are cardiovascular in nature. They include things like palpitations, hyper-and hypo-tension, fainting and valve damage. These serious conditions led the FDA to pull Pondimin (Fenfluramine) from the shelves in the United States.