Qsymia vs. Contrave

Reviewed on 12/16/2020

Are Qsymia and Contrave the Same Thing?

Qsymia (phentermine and topiramate extended-release) and Contrave (naltrexone HCl and bupropion HCl) Extended-release are used as adjuncts to a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity for chronic weight management in overweight and obese adults.

Contrave is used in patients who have at least one weight-related comorbid condition (e.g., hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, or dyslipidemia).

Qsymia is a combination appetite suppressant/stimulant and seizure medication and Contrave is a combination of an opioid antagonist and an antidepressant.

Side effects of Qsymia and Contrave that are similar include trouble sleeping (insomnia), dizziness, anxiety, constipation, altered sense of taste, dry mouth, headache, flu symptoms, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, urinary tract infection (UTI), stomach/abdominal pain or upset, rash, palpitations, and problems with attention.

Side effects of Qsymia that are different from Contrave include mood changes such as depression, confusion, tiredness, irritability, numbness or tingly feeling, unpleasant taste in the mouth, upper respiratory tract infection, runny or stuffy nose, sinus infection, back pain, bronchitis, cough, blurred vision, pain in extremities, muscle spasms or pain, indigestion, thirst, eye pain, dry eyes, hair loss, loss of appetite, changes in menstrual periods, neck pain, and problems with concentration, memory, or speech.

Side effects of Contrave that are different from Qsymia include vomiting, hot flashes, tremor, ringing in the ears, high blood pressure, increased sweating, muscle strain, lightheadedness, and fainting.

Both Qsymia and Contrave may interact with opioid-containing medicines (such as cough and cold remedies, antidiarrheal drugs, and opioid analgesics).

Qsymia may also interact with birth control pills, other drugs that make you drowsy (sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, or medicines for anxiety or seizures), acetazolamide, methazolamide, zonisamide, valproic acid or divalproex sodium, diuretics (water pills), and insulin or oral diabetes medicines.

Contrave may also interact with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), antidepressants, antipsychotics, beta-blockers, antiarrhythmics, ticlopidine, clopidogrel, ritonavir, lopinavir, efavirenz, theophylline, corticosteroids, levodopa, amantadine, and alcohol.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Qsymia?

Common side effects of Qsymia include:

  • mood changes such as depression,
  • trouble sleeping (insomnia),
  • confusion,
  • dizziness,
  • anxiety,
  • tiredness,
  • irritability,
  • constipation,
  • numbness or tingly feeling,
  • altered sense of taste,
  • dry mouth,
  • unpleasant taste in your mouth,
  • headache,
  • upper respiratory tract infection,
  • runny or stuffy nose,
  • sinus infection,
  • back pain,
  • flu symptoms,
  • bronchitis,
  • fatigue,
  • nausea,
  • diarrhea,
  • cough,
  • urinary tract infection,
  • blurred vision,
  • pain in extremities,
  • depression,
  • rash,
  • stomach pain or upset,
  • muscle spasms,
  • indigestion,
  • thirst,
  • eye pain,
  • dry eyes,
  • palpitations,
  • hair loss,
  • loss of appetite,
  • changes in menstrual periods,
  • muscle pain,
  • neck pain, or
  • problems with concentration, attention, memory or speech.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Contrave?

Common side effects of Contrave include:

  • nausea,
  • headache,
  • vomiting,
  • constipation,
  • diarrhea,
  • dizziness,
  • trouble sleeping (insomnia),
  • dry mouth,
  • anxiety,
  • hot flashes,
  • fatigue,
  • tremor,
  • abdominal pain,
  • flu symptoms,
  • ringing in the ears,
  • urinary tract infection,
  • high blood pressure,
  • increased sweating,
  • changes in taste,
  • rash,
  • muscle strain,
  • palpitations,
  • problems with attention,
  • lightheadedness, or
  • fainting.

SLIDESHOW

Surprising Causes of Weight Gain See Slideshow

What Is Qsymia?

Qsymia (phentermine and topiramate extended-release) is a combination appetite suppressant/stimulant and seizure medication indicated as an adjunct to a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity for chronic weight management in overweight and obese adults.

What Is Contrave?

Contrave (naltrexone HCl and bupropion HCl) Extended-release is a combination of an opioid antagonist and an antidepressant used as an adjunct to a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity for chronic weight management in adults with an initial body mass index (BMI) of: 30 kg/m² or greater (obese) or 27 kg/m² or greater (overweight) in the presence of at least one weight-related comorbid condition (e.g., hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, or dyslipidemia).

What Drugs Interact With Qsymia?

Other medications may interact with Qsymia. Tell your doctor all medications you use.

What Drugs Interact With Contrave?

Contrave may interact with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), opioid-containing medicines (such as cough and cold remedies, antidiarrheal drugs, and opioid analgesics), antidepressants, antipsychotics, beta-blockers, antiarrhythmics, ticlopidine, clopidogrel, ritonavir, lopinavir, efavirenz, theophylline, corticosteroids, levodopa, amantadine, and alcohol. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Contrave is not recommended for use during pregnancy.

How Should Qsymia be Taken?

Dosing of Qsymia is based on the body mass index (BMI) of the patient. Start treatment with Qsymia 3.75 mg/23 mg (phentermine 3.75 mg/topiramate 23 mg extended-release) daily for 14 days; after 14 days increase to the recommended dose of Qsymia 7.5 mg/46 mg (phentermine 7.5 mg/topiramate 46 mg extended-release) once daily. Weight loss should be evaluated 12 weeks after the start of treatment.

How Should Contrave be Taken?

Contrave is started at a low dose and gradually increased. A total daily dosage of two Contrave 8 mg/90 mg tablets twice daily (32 mg/360 mg) is reached at the start of Week 4.

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References
VIVUS. Qsymia Product Information.

https://qsymia.com/

Nalpropion Pharmaceuticals. Contrave Product Information.

https://contrave.com

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