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THURSDAY, Feb. 13, 2020 (HealthDay Information) — A medical trial of the weight-loss drug Belviq (lorcaserin) reveals an affiliation with an elevated threat of cancer, and the U.S. Meals and Drug Administration is requesting that its maker withdraw the drug from the U.S. market.
Eisai Inc. has already “submitted a request to voluntarily withdraw the drug,” Dr. Janet Woodcock, who directs the FDA’s Middle for Drug Analysis and Analysis, famous in an announcement issued Thursday.
Now, “we’re taking steps to inform the general public,” she stated, including that “our assessment of the complete medical trial outcomes reveals that the potential threat of cancer related to the drug outweighs the good thing about therapy.”
Woodcock stated the FDA is advising that “sufferers ought to cease utilizing the remedy Belviq and Belviq XR [lorcaserin] and speak to their well being care professionals about different therapy choices for weight loss. Well being care professionals ought to cease prescribing and meting out Belviq and Belviq XR.”
The company first introduced that Belviq may need hyperlinks to cancer in a communication issued Jan 15.
On the time, the FDA stated “we can’t conclude that lorcaserin contributes to the cancer threat,” however “wished to make the general public conscious of this potential threat. We’re persevering with to guage the medical trial outcomes and can talk our last conclusions and suggestions when we’ve got accomplished our assessment.”
That assessment seems to have led to requires the voluntary withdrawal of the remedy.
Belviq will increase emotions of fullness so that individuals eat much less. It is obtainable as a pill (Belviq) and an extended-release pill (Belviq XR).
Contingent on approval, the FDA ordered a randomized, placebo-controlled trial be carried out involving 12,000 folks tracked for greater than 5 years.
The trial wrapped up in June 2018, and the information confirmed that whereas 7.1% of these taking a “dummy” placebo developed cancer, that quantity rose to 7.7% amongst these taking Belviq.
“A variety of cancer varieties was reported,” the FDA stated. “A number of several types of cancers occurred extra continuously amongst sufferers handled with Belviq, together with pancreatic, colorectal and lung cancer. Throughout the trial, one extra most cancers per 470 sufferers handled with the remedy for one yr was noticed.”
Individuals who have already taken Belviq ought to cease taking it, however “the FDA will not be recommending particular screening for sufferers who’ve taken Belviq,” Woodcock stated.
— E.J. Mundell
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SOURCES: information launch, Feb. 13, 2020, U.S. Meals and Drug Administration