"Oct. 30, 2012 -- Perhaps the best time to learn how to avoid regaining lost pounds is before you shed a single one, according to a new study.
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(Generic versions may still be available.)
Meridia Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Meridia (sibutramine hydrochloride or sibutramine hydrochloride monohydrate) is used along with a low-calorie diet to help people with obesity lose weight. Meridia is available in generic form and should be taken by mouth, usually once daily with or without food, or as directed by your doctor. Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Some common side effects may include: flu symptoms, fast or pounding heartbeats, high blood pressure, new or worsening shortness of breath, seizure (convulsions), fast or uneven heartbeats, dry mouth, upset stomach, and loss of appetite.
Drug interaction and warnings include: do not use Meridia if you have taken a MAO inhibitor drug in the last 14 days. The use of Meridia during pregnancy is not recommended. Meridia is not recommended for use in nursing mothers. Patients should be advised to notify their physician if they become pregnant or intend to become pregnant and if they are breast feeding while taking Meridia. Meridia is not recommended for the treatment of obesity in pediatric patients. This brand name drug is no longer available in the US.
Our Meridia Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Meridia in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using sibutramine and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
- fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeats;
- new or worsening shortness of breath;
- agitation, hallucinations, fever, tremor, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, dilated pupils;
- very stiff (rigid) muscles, high fever, sweating, confusion, feeling like you might pass out;
- easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums, or any bleeding that will not stop);
- dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, seizure);
- chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, general ill feeling; or
- sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), problems with vision, speech, or balance.
Less serious side effects may include:
- dry mouth, upset stomach;
- changes in appetite;
- constipation, stomach pain;
- headache, back pain, joint pain;
- feeling nervous, dizzy, or depressed;
- flu symptoms, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, cough;
- warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under your skin;
- trouble sleeping (insomnia); or
- mild skin rash.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Meridia (Sibutramine Hydrochloride Monohydrate) »
What is Patient Information Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Meridia Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the entire patient information overview for Meridia (Sibutramine Hydrochloride Monohydrate)»
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Meridia FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
In placebo-controlled studies, 9% of patients treated with sibutramine (n = 2068) and 7% of patients treated with placebo (n = 884) withdrew for adverse events.
In placebo-controlled studies, the most common events were dry mouth, anorexia, insomnia, constipation and headache. Adverse events in these studies occurring in ≥ 1% of sibutramine treated patients and more frequently than in the placebo group are shown in the following table.
Obese Patients in Placebo-Controlled Studies
(n = 2068)
(n = 884)
|BODY AS A WHOLE|
|Hypertension/increased blood pressure||2.1||0.9|
|METABOLIC & NUTRITIONAL|
|Cough incr ease||3.8||3.3|
|SKIN & APPENDAGES|
|Urinary tract infection||2.3||2.0|
The following additional adverse events were reported in ≥ 1% of all patients who received sibutramine in controlled and uncontrolled premarketing studies.
Body as a Whole: fever.
Metabolic and Nutritional: peripheral edema.
Musculoskeletal System: arthritis.
Nervous System: agitation, leg cramps, hypertonia, thinking abnormal.
Skin and Appendages: pruritus.
Special Senses: amblyopia.
Urogenital System: menstrual disorders.
Other Adverse Events
Convulsions were reported as an adverse event in three of 2068 (0.1%) sibutramine treated patients and in none of 884 placebo-treated patients in placebo-cont rolled premarketing obesity studies. Two of the three patients with seizures had potentially predisposing factors (one had a prior history of epilepsy; one had a subsequent diagnosis of brain tumor). The incidence in all subjects who received sibutramine (three of 4,588 subjects) was less than 0.1%.
Ecchymosis (bruising) was observed in 0.7% of sibutramine trea ted patients and in 0.2% of placebo-treated patients in premarketing placebo-controlled obesity studies. One patient had prolonged bleeding of a small amount which occurred during minor facial surgery. Sibutramine may have an effect on platelet function due to its effect on serotonin uptake.
Acute interstitial nephritis (confirmed by biopsy) was reported in one obese patient receiving sibutramine during premarketing studies. After discontinuation of the medication, dialysis and oral corticosteroids were administered; renal function normalized. The patient made a full recovery.
Altered Laboratory Findings
Abnormal liver function tests, including increases in AST, ALT, GGT, LDH, alkaline phosphatase and bilirubin, were reported as adverse events in 1.6% of sibutramine-treated obese patients in placebo-controlled trials compared with 0.8% of placebo patients. In these studies, potentially clinically significant values (total bilirubin ≥ 2 mg/dL; ALT, AST, GGT, LDH, or alkaline phosphatase ≥ 3 × upper limit of normal) occurred in 0% (alkaline phosphatase) to 0.6% (ALT) of the sibutramine treated patients and in none of the placebo-treated patients. Abnormal values tended to be sporadic, often diminished with continued treatment, and did not show a clear dose-response relationship.
Voluntary reports of adverse events temporally associated with the use of sibutramine are listed below. It is important to emphasize that although these events occurred during treatment with sibutramine, they may have no causal relationship with the drug. Obesity itself, concurrent disease states/risk factors, or weight reduction may be associated with an increased risk for some of these events.
Cases of depression, psychosis, mania, suicidal ideation and suicide have been reported rarely in patients on sibutramine treatment. However, a relationship has not been established between these events and the use of sibutramine. If any of these events should occur during treatment with sibutramine, discontinuation should be considered.
Allergic hypersensitivity reactions ranging from mild skin eruptions and urticaria to angioedema and anaphylaxis have been reported (see CONTRAINDICATIONS and PATIENT INFORMATION, and other reports of allergic reactions listed below).
Other Postmarketing Reported Events
Body as a Whole: anaphylactic shock, anaphylactoid reaction, chest pressure, chest tightness, facial edema, limb pain, sudden unexplained death.
Cardiovascular System: angina pectoris, atrial fibrillation, congestive heart failure, heart arrest, heart rate decreased, myocardial infarction, supraventricular tachycardia, syncope, torsade de pointes, vascular headache, ventricular tachycardia, ventricular extrasystoles, ventricular fibrillation.
Nervous System: abnormal dreams, abnormal gait, amnesia, anger, cerebrovascular accident, concentration impaired, confusion, depression aggravated, Gilles de la Tourette's syndrome, hypesthesia, libido decreased, libido increased, mood changes, nightmares, short term memory loss, speech disorder, transient ischemic attack, tremor, twitch, vertigo.
Drug Abuse And Dependence
MERIDIA (sibutramine hydrochloride monohydrate) is controlled in Schedule IV of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).
Abuse and Physical and Psychological Dependence
Physicians should carefully evaluate patients for history of drug abuse and follow such patients closely, observing them for signs of misuse or abuse (e.g., drug development of tolerance, incrementation of doses, drug seeking behavior).
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Meridia (Sibutramine Hydrochloride Monohydrate) »
Additional Meridia Information
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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