▸ Belviq and Qsymia approved for long-term treatment of obesity. ▸ Metformin might have greater role in treatment of obesity, than is appreciated. ▸ Modest weight loss has significant health benefits.
Obesity has reached epidemic proportions and is a significant public health concern. Obesity is associated with increased diabetes, cardiovascular and kidney disease, and associated morbidity and mortality. Despite the increasing public health problem of obesity, there is a dearth of effective treatment options. Following the FDA mandated withdrawal of sibutramine, the treatment options for obesity were limited to orlistat as the only pharmacological treatment option for long-term management of obesity. Recently two new medications (Belviq and Qsymia) were approved by FDA for long-term management of obesity. Many other antiobesity drugs are under development. Bariatric surgery has been shown to be effective in the treatment of obesity and its comorbidities. The available data suggest that even modest weight loss improves diabetes and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors. We summarize the treatment options for obesity and the efficacy of these options in ameliorating cardiovascular risk factors. We also focus on the recently approved antiobesity drugs.